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Blaha holds late lead in Minnesota auditor race

Julie Blaha1 / 2
Pam Myhra2 / 2

ST. PAUL — Democratic Farmer-Labor candidate Julie Blaha led Republican Pam Myhra for Minnesota State Auditor at 50 percent of the vote with 81 percent of precincts reporting unofficial results Tuesday, Nov. 6.

As of 11:45 p.m., Blaha had 50 percent of the vote to Myhra’s 42.5 percent. Legalize Marijuana Now candidate Michael Ford was at 5 percent and Libertarian candidate Chris Dock at 2 percent.

Minnesota is one of 24 states that elect an auditor. The position focuses on oversight of about $20 billion spent by local governments yearly and involves auditing, reviewing, investigating, reporting and educating, according to the state website. The auditor is paid $108,485.

Blaha is a middle-school math teacher from Anoka. She is a first-time candidate with ties to local government as a member of the Public Employee Coalition, Minnesota AFL-CIO and Anoka-Hennepin Education Minnesota. She was backed by Minnesota DFL party.

Myhra is a certified public accountant from Burnsville. She served two terms as a Minnesota State Representative. Myhra is backed by the GOP and also is president of the Minnesota Federation of Republican Women.

State Auditor Rebecca Otto has held the position for three consecutive terms, first assuming office in 2007. She was not seeking re-election this year and instead announced plans to run for governor. Otto did not receive the DFL endorsement during the state convention and withdrew from the race in June.