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Willmar’s Dave Baker files for local house seat

Dave Baker of Willmar awaits a Minnesota Capitol steps event to begin with fellow Republican state House candidates on Thursday. Forum News Service photo by Don Davis

WILLMAR –– Willmar businessman Dave Baker filed for election Thursday in St. Paul for the House of Representative seat for District 17B.

As the GOP-endorsed candidate he’ll run against Rep. Mary Sawatzky, DFL-Willmar, who is seeking her second term in office.

Baker said he filed for office at the Secretary of State’s office in St. Paul along with a number of Republican incumbents and challengers who were “standing in unison” in the belief that “one party government isn’t the best way to rule, “said Baker.

“I’m pretty excited we’re going to put together a good plate of candidates to give our voters a choice this fall,” he said.

Baker said as an entrepreneur he is concerned about the economy of Minnesota and he wants to send the message that the state needs a “vibrant” business community and good jobs with good wages.

He said businesses need incentives to hire more people, instead of the increased taxes that he said have been a “disservice” to businesses and has made it “harder to do business in Minnesota.”

Baker created Baker Hospitalities Inc. in 1999 with his wife, Mary. They own and operate the Oaks at Eagle Creek restaurant, Green Lake Cruises and Willmar Super 8.

He said health care costs and increasing taxes are having negative ramifications. “We can’t scare job creators away,” said Baker.

If he’s elected, Baker said he would support measures that would encourage more jobs and more pay, which he said would result in better schools because additional tax revenue would be generated.

Baker, who has not run for a political office before, announced this winter he intended to run for office. After “making it official” on Thursday, Baker said he’ll begin door-knocking and fund-raising next week.

“It’s a brand new journey,” said Baker. “I’m looking forward to a good, clean positive campaign.”

Carolyn Lange

A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.

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