Housley decides against 2014 gubernatorial bid

GOP state senator to focus on District 39

Sen. Karin Housley
Sen. Karin Housley

Clint Riese
News Editor

There will be no Housley for governor campaign this fall. Karin Housley, the first-term District 39 state senator, had been mulling a run for the Republican endorsement to challenge DFL Gov. Mark Dayton.

On Monday, the St. Mary’s Point resident told the Forest Lake Times that, after making a tough decision, she will not run.

Housley said she was overwhelmed by the encouragement she received from those urging her to make a gubernatorial bid, but said she wants to give her full attention to her family and constituents.

“Sometimes you just have to say ‘stop’ and you have to focus and do a good job right here, being a good daughter, mother and wife,” Housley said.

“I want to stay in the Senate, continue to work for the people who elected me and work to make this state a better place, and for that reason I will not seek any office in 2014,” she added in a statement.

In her second legislative session, Housley said she will aim to help local school districts, including Forest Lake’s. Last year she carried legislation for ISD 831’s unsuccessful effort to receive funding for deferred maintenance under the Alternative Facilities Program.

“We have real challenges with MNsure, out-of-control state spending and bringing more jobs to Minnesota, and those are things I am going to continue to work on,” she said in her statement.

The real estate agent and radio show host was elected in 2012. She said her relative newness to the Legislature did not factor into her decision.

“I think people really do like a breath of fresh air from the outside,” Housley, 50, told the Times. “I know I would have been a good candidate and would not have provided a voting record for the Dayton camp to go after, but that’s not a reason to run. I would want to be able to give it my everything.”