Second GOP candidate seeks to unseat Smith

A second Republican is running for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by DFLer Tina Smith.

Bob Anderson, a dental technician from Hastings, said Wednesday he will seek the GOP endorsement but hasn’t ruled out running in the primary.

Republican state Sen. Karin Housley is also running in the contest to face Smith. Former Gov. Tim Pawlenty said this week that he will not run.

Anderson was an Independence Party congressional candidate in Minnesota’s 6

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District in 2008 and 2010. He said he’s running for the U.S. Senate as a political outsider and an enthusiastic supporter of President Trump.

“Donald Trump delivers, and I’m excited we’ve got a president in the White House that is changing American politics,” Anderson said. “I’m going to go there to help him.”

Anderson said he originally wanted to challenge Democratic U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar but changed course when a special election was scheduled for a state Senate vacancy. After losing the District 54 endorsement battle, he set his sights on the other U.S. Senate contest.

“I learned a very valuable lesson,” Anderson said. “I found out insiders run for endorsements, outsiders run for primaries.”