Former Republican state Rep. Dan "Doc" Severson announced his second campaign for Minnesota Secretary of State at a state Capitol news conference Thursday morning. DFL Secretary of State Mark Ritchie is not seeking a third term this fall.
Severson, 59, lives in Sauk Rapids. He lost his first campaign for secretary of state to Ritchie in 2010 when he campaigned heavily on requiring voters to show photo identification. In 2012 Minnesotans rejected a proposed constitutional amendment that would have required voter I.D.
This time Severson says voter I.D. will not be the centerpiece of his campaign. He also says he will work harder to attract support from minority communities.
"In my 2010 race for S.O.S. we came within 3 points of unseating the incumbent," Severson said. "We won the majority of the counties but lost Hennepin and Ramsey county where immigrant and minority communities make up one out of every four votes. It was a big mistake. We won't do that again."
Severson is a retired Navy pilot. After losing his first bid for secretary of state four years ago, he pursued a U.S. Senate campaign against Democrat Amy Klobuchar but lost the Republican endorsement.
Also in this year's the race for secretary of state is former Red Wing mayor and former state Sen. John Howe. Two DFL legislators, Rep. Debra Hilstrom of Brooklyn Center and Rep. Steve Simon of Hopkins, are also running for the vacant seat.
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