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Editorial: The 6th District race is heating up

The 6th Congressional District is heating up long before the 2010 election year even arrives.

Incumbent Michele Bachmann is seeking re-election. However, some DFL and Republican Party activists think the Stillwater representative is vulnerable.

They may be right.

Bachmann has not made many significant accomplishments, other than grabbing headlines on a regular basis, including:

- Her 2007 embarrassing extensive hug of President George Bush at her first State of the Union speech,

- During 2008 appearances on national talk shows, she questioned the patriotism of other congressional members,

- Her 2009 announcement that she would not completely fill out the census form, because it was too intrusive. She linked the World War II internment of Japanese Americans and nationals to the census.

The DFL appears to be aligning for a strong target effort to oust Bachmann.

Just last week former DFL challenger Elwyn Tinklenberg announced his candidacy to oppose Bachmann a third time. This week, he abruptly withdrew stating that defeating Bachmann was a more important goal than his own candidacy.

The other two announced DFL candidates are Assistant Senate Majority Leader Tarryl Clark, of St. Cloud, and Dr. Maureen Reed, of Stillwater.

Both appear to be strong candidates and have the fundraising ability to compete in the 6th District. Clark likely has the deeper and wider support within the district, especially in the northern St. Cloud area of the district. Reed has previously run in the Independence Party.

Bachmann has proven she can be a formable candidate. She has led a charmed political life, often exceeding expectations. Yet she often a habit of sticking her foot in her mouth, like her 2008 election quip about patriotism that turned a sizeable lead into a narrow 3-point win over Tinklenberg.

The 6th District race in 2010 appears to be shaping up as a heated political fight.