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Zerwas to resign House seat in December

Rep. Nick Zerwas, shown here speaking on the House Floor in 2019, announced Monday he will resign his House seat in December following a recent heart surgery. Photo by Andrew VonBank

Rep. Nick Zerwas (R-Elk River) will resign from the House of Representatives Dec. 6, the four-term member announced Monday.

Zerwas, who has battled heart problems throughout his life, said another medical procedure last month contributed to his decision.   

"For the last 13 years it has been the honor of my lifetime to serve my neighbors in Elk River on the city council and the state legislature,” Zerwas said in a statement. “My recent heart surgery brought into focus the need to spend as much time as I can with my wife and three-year-old son and spend my prime working years providing the best possible life for my family. It is not easy leaving a job that I absolutely love, but I'm able to depart on my own terms with no regrets and with optimism for what lies ahead. I want to thank my parents, my brothers, my wife Bette and my son for being unbelievably supportive of my service in the legislature."

Zerwas is currently the Republican lead on the House Government Operations Committee and also sits on the House Corrections and the House Health and Human Services Finance divisions.

First elected to the House in 2012, Zerwas has served on several health and human services and public safety committees during his time at the Legislature.

In a statement, House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt (R-Crown) said the impact of work done by Zerwas will continue to be felt long after his departure.

“From the Right-to-Try Act that earned him national recognition and a visit to the White House, to his bipartisan work to reform solitary confinement laws, he has earned respect on both sides of the aisle, and we will miss his humor and wit,” Daudt said. 

The departure of Zerwas means two special elections will need to be held before the Legislature convenes Feb. 11, 2020. Rep. Diane Loeffler (DFL-Mpls) passed away Nov. 16.


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