ST. PAUL (AP) -- The Saint Paul Pioneer Press has endorsed construction executive Rebecca Yanisch in the DFL primary race to challenge incumbent Republican Rod Grams for U.S. Senate.
Yanisch, a political newcomer who in a recent poll was trailing three other Democratic candidates vying to unseat Grams, demonstrates a different kind of leadership style with her combination of public and private business experience and her focus and discipline in pursuing the nomination, the newspaper said Sunday.
"Her moderate, practical campaign agenda suggests that Yanisch would bring a different voice and common sense to help alter the argument culture (in Washington) that has turned people off from politics," the newspaper said.
The three Democratic candidates leading Yanisch in the recent poll are former state auditor Mark Dayton, trial lawyer Mike Ciresi and state Sen. Jerry Janezich. Former Minneapolis alderman Dick Franson, Minneapolis painter Ole Savior, 1998 secretary of state candidate Gregg Iverson of Minneapolis and Hal Dorland of St. Paul are also running in the DFL primary.
The Pioneer Press said that while Dayton has an admirable desire for public service, voters have denied him on two previous attempts to be elected senator and governor.
Ciresi shows hard campaign work and impressive skills for progressively analyzing federal issues, but the lack of public disclosure from his firm's billing records in connection with the compensation won in Minnesota's tobacco lawsuit clouds his candidacy for public office, the newspaper said.
And Janezich, the DFL-endorsed candidate, has a strong desire to serve in public life but lacks the capacity to mount a vigorous general election campaign against Grams, the newspaper said.
Also published Sunday, a Star Tribune Minnesota Poll, conducted statewide last Sunday through Thursday of 527 likely voters in the Sept. 12 DFL primary election, shows Dayton clearly in the lead with 36 percent support. Ciresi was next at 15 percent, followed by Janezich at 14 percent and Yanisch at 6 percent. Twenty-seven percent were undecided or had no opinion.
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