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Minnesota Legislature

Recount affirms Persell wins District 5A seat

Fourth Judicial District Chief Judge Ivy S. Bernhardson asks a question of State Elections Director Gary Poser Tuesday as he presents the canvassing report for the Nov. 6 general election to the State Canvassing Board. Photo by Paul Battaglia


The State Canvassing Board certified Monday that John Persell will return to St. Paul for a fifth term.

2018 State Canvassing Board 11/27/18

A report of the Dec. 3 publicly funded recount shows that Persell (DFL-Bemidji) defeated Rep. Matt Bliss (R-Pennington) by 11 votes. The difference was eight votes after the Nov. 6 election. There were 16,904 votes cast in the District 5A race, including seven write-ins. Bliss beat Persell in 2016.

The DFL will have a 75-59 seat advantage in the House when the 2019 session begins Jan. 8.

On Nov. 27, the canvassing board certified all other results of the 2018 General Election, including state and judicial offices; two U.S. Senate races; and eight U.S. House of Representatives races.

[WATCH Full video of the Nov. 27 meeting on YouTube]

More than 2.6 million Minnesotans, among roughly 4 million eligible voters, cast ballots in this November’s election, said Gary Poser, elections director for the Secretary of State’s Office. That nearly equaled the 2.9 million votes cast in the 2016 election, and far surpassed the 1.9 million who voted in the last mid-term election in 2014.



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