Minnesota State Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka stepped down on Wednesday in what some are saying is a likely precursor to entering into the race for governor. A statement from Gazelka said that he will be a part of Minnesota’s “future success” as he pursues “the next chapter” in his “political life.”
Gazelka has held the majority leader position for five years. His letter, announcing his stepping down from the position, listed his accomplishments. He said that, “These accomplishments were possible because we stuck to our principles and communicated directly with the people of Minnesota.”
Gazelka said he believes “the caucus is in a very strong position to be successful in the 2022 session and the subsequent election.” He said that, “Outside of my family life, and my faith in God, leading this caucus has been the most rewarding experience of my life.”
As reported by the Star Tribune, “Gazelka has yet to announce whether he will run for governor, but said at the State Fair last week that he is ‘still leaning’ toward a gubernatorial bid and would make a decision within weeks of the Fair.”
Many have surmised this resignation from his position as senate majority leader is the last step before Gazelka announces his bid.
Gazelka said he thinks Minnesota needs change.
He said, “I think Minnesota needs a change right now, so I’m seriously weighing my options.” Last week, Gazelka hinted at stepping down from his position as majority leader, saying that he did not believe he could run for governor and hold that position at the same time.
Five Republican candidates have announced their candidacy for the gubernatorial bid so far: Dr. Scott Jensen, Dr. Neil Shah, State Senator Michelle Benson (R-Ham Lake), Mike Murphy, and Mike Marti. Current Minnesota Governor Tim Walz has not announced if he will seek reelection or not.
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