National Republicans now view the Minnesota gubernatorial contest as a potential pickup and are sending in reinforcements with two weeks to go before the election.
The Republican Governors Association (RGA) transferred $750,000 to a local group called Heal Minnesota Tuesday and more money could be on the way. Heal Minnesota placed an initial ad buy with WCCO.
In a race where Republicans have been significantly outspent, the outside support could be the boost they need as polls show a tightening race.
Republican Dr. Scott Jensen was leading Democratic incumbent Gov. Tim Walz by half a point in the latest Alpha News/Trafalgar Group poll. Voters ranked inflation and crime as their top priorities, with abortion access a distant third.
For perspective, an estimated $22 million is expected to be spent on political ads in Minnesota from now until Election Day. But RGA’s $750,000 is likely the largest outside contribution to help Jensen this cycle.
RGA plans to send in Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds for a campaign rally and fundraiser for Jensen on Monday. Jensen was also endorsed by former President Donald Trump Tuesday night.
“As this campaign takes the lead in the polls, I expect many individuals and organizations to ride the momentum and endorse our campaign,” he said in response. “While we have not actively sought the endorsement of political leaders, we are grateful for those who have recognized our ability to lead and Heal Minnesota.”