Minnesota hasn’t gone Republican in a presidential race since 1972, making it among the country’s most reliably Democratic states.
Nevertheless, Democratic vice presidential nominee Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) recently admitted that the Biden/Harris ticket might not win the state in November.
The senator has good reason for concern, as Democrats have not been an overwhelming force in the state recently, as President Donald Trump came within less than 2 points of securing victory in 2016, The New York Times reported.
Harris: Minnesota “absolutely” up for grabs
Harris made the remarks in an interview on Monday with Christiane Cordero, a correspondent with Minnesota CBS affiliate WCCO. “The last time Minnesota voted for a Republican presidential candidate, you were you were all of 8 years old,” the journalist pointed out.
When Cordero asked whether “it feel like this state is up for grabs right now,” Harris was quick to concede that it is, declaring, “Absolutely.”
This prompted Cordero to point out that the Harris was appearing by video, asking her why she didn’t come to Minnesota “in person today, especially knowing that your counterpart, Vice President Mike Pence, is?”
The California senator replied, “We are all over the country doing a combination of in-person and virtual,” before bringing up the threat posed by coronavirus while campaigning.
Harris insisted, “We want to be safe, we want to create an environment where the people who come to see us are safe and we can’t do that if we’re trying to pack people into a room and so we’ve been very judicious and you know frankly, I’ve been there virtually in September, back in July, and we’re gonna keep talking to Minnesotans about the issues that impact them.”
Union support for Democrats may be slipping
Minnesota’s status as a reliable blue state comes in part from the power of organized labor there, particularly in its “Iron Range,” a mostly rural northern area that largely depends on mining.
However, a number of local mayors in the region have broken with tradition by signing a letter that endorsed the president’s reelection.
“When I signed the letter, I was very aware of the pushback,” Chisholm Mayor John Champa said, according to local NBC affiliate KBJR.
He continued, “You’re in the bear’s den of the Democratic Party right now, and it has been for the history of the iron range, but it’s changing. The problem is that the left wants to silence the right. Don’t back down.”