Voters in a southeast metro House district will pick a new state legislator today to replace former Democratic Rep. Ruth Richardson, who resigned in September.
The leading candidates for the vacant House District 52B seat are Republican small business owner Cynthia Lonnquist and Democrat Bianca Virnig, a current school board member who cast the lone dissenting vote in March 2022 to end a mask mandate for students in the Rosemount-Apple Valley-Eagan school district. Charles Kuchlenz is running as a Libertarian.
Virnig won a four-way DFL primary Nov. 16, with current Mendota Heights City Council Member Jay Miller placing in second. Lonnquist ran unopposed in the Republican primary.
According to recent campaign finance reports, Lonnquist has outraised Virnig $20,593 to $14,383.
House District 52B covers Mendota and parts of Mendota Heights and Eagan in Dakota County.
If Democrats lose Tuesday’s special election, they will see their majority in the House decrease from six seats to four. The winner of Tuesday’s election will be sworn in before the start of the next legislative session in February.