Willmar set to host the 7th District Republican convention
WILLMAR -- A long slate of statewide Republican candidates and as many as 268 delegates will be in Willmar this weekend for the 7th District Congressional Republican party convention.
The delegates will debate the merits of 50 resolutions, endorse a candidate for Congress and hear from Republican candidates that are seeking election, or reelection to statewide posts.
"We're very happy and excited to have the 7th district convention here in Willmar," said Rollie Nissen, co-chair of the Kandiyohi County Republicans. "It's going to be a lot of fun."
He said the Willmar Convention and Visitor's Bureau was crucial in helping land the convention, which includes a Friday evening banquet at the Kandi Entertainment Center. The convention begins at 9 a.m. Saturday at the KEC. Judie Rosendahl, chairwoman of the 7th District Republicans, said Willmar was the only site that requested to be host community this year.
Rosendahl said Gov. Tim Pawlenty, U.S. Sen. Norm Coleman and Rep. Mark Kennedy are scheduled to speak at the convention.
At 1 p.m., the delegates will endorse a candidate to run against DFL Rep. Collin Peterson. Mike Barrett, from Long Prairie, is the only candidate who's announced he intends to run against Peterson.
Debate on 50 resolutions will take place in the afternoon.
Two people will be allowed to speak for a resolution, and two will be allowed to speak against an issue. Each speaker will be given one minute, Rosendahl said.
The marriage issue is included in one of those resolutions.
Debating the resolutions is the main reason many delegates come to the conventions.
The 7th District is the largest in Minnesota with 35 counties.