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Waidelich creates a three-way race for GOP in House 10A

Offering to bring the perspective of a young person to the Republican House 10A race, Brad Waidelich, 24, of Nisswa has announced his candidacy for the Legislature.

A small business owner and partner in Ron’s Construction of Nisswa, Waidelich will join Chris Kellett, 45, Brainerd and Kurt Martin, 54, rural Brainerd, in the race for the Republican endorsement. All three said they would abide by the decision of the 9 a.m. March 31 Republican endorsing convention in Aitkin.

“I can offer youth,” Waidelich said. “I’m willing to knock on every door in the district if that’s what it takes to win.”

A lifelong resident of Nisswa, he’s a graduate of Brainerd High School and Central Lakes College in Brainerd.

He said he would focus on jobs, the economy and the creation of a business-friendly environment in Minnesota. The key to bolstering the economy, he said, was to reduce unnecessary regulations and to make a tax structure that’s competitive with other states.

Citing a Tax Foundation study, Waidelich said Minnesota was ranked 45th in the nation in terms of being business-friendly. He said the state’s corporate tax structure ranked 42nd and its individual income tax structure was ranked 44th.

Stating he would not vote in favor of a tax increase, Waidelich described Rep. John Ward, DFL-Brainerd, in his news release as a lawmaker who has “consistently voted to raise taxes and spending.”

Making his first bid for elective office, Waidelich expressed concern about the Brainerd area’s high unemployment rate; called for a return to full funding for K-12 education and state support for community and technical education. He said, in his news release, he wants students and classrooms to be priorities, not expensive administrative costs or teachers’ unions.

Pledging to be an advocate of strong family values rather than paternalistic government, Waidelich said he takes a strong pro-life position. He said, in a statement, he is “very much opposed to the use of taxpayer dollars to fund abortion.”

Waidelich is the son of Ron and Clara (Devon) Waidelich of Nisswa.

MIKE O’ROURKE may be reached at 855-5860 or Follow me on Twitter at

Mike O'Rourke
Mike O'Rourke began his career at the Brainerd Dispatch in 1978 as a general assignment reporter. He was named city editor in 1981 and associate editor in 1999. He covers politics and writes features and editorials.
(218) 855-5860