MN Businessman Graves to Run Against Bachmann Again
Local businessman and hotel founder Jim Graves reportedly announced Thursday that he will once again run against U.S. Representative Michele Bachmann for Minnesota’s 6th Congressional District seat—this time in 2014.
Graves, a Democrat, founded AmericInn and the Graves Hospitality company. During his last campaign, in which he lost narrowly to Bachmann, Graves focused heavily on creating jobs and improving the economy. Graves has never held political office; he previously campaigned as a self-starter who would use his business background to help attract jobs and companies to Minnesota.
In the contentious 2012 Congressional race, Bachmann beat out Graves by a margin of only about 4,300 votes.
During last year’s race, Graves repeatedly criticized Bachmann for her pursuit of the national spotlight and the time she spent away from Minnesota during her unsuccessful run for president.
“These days, Congress is all about scoring political points rather than actually solving problems, and Minnesota’s 6th District—my home—is losing out because of that more than anywhere,” Graves said in a statement provided to the St. Cloud Times. “I’m not interested in celebrity, only in solutions.”
Graves will have more time to prepare for the 2014 election than he had to prepare for the last one: Last time around, he was unable to campaign until the spring of 2012 due to redistricting. However, Bachmann will also be able to give her full attention to the campaign since she doesn’t have a presidential campaign to focus on.
Graves will run in a conservative region of Minneapolis suburbs that Bachmann has represented for four terms.
Elsewhere in Minnesota, another business leader recently announced plans to run for U.S. Congress. Sona Mehring, founder and CEO of CaringBridge, said she will step down from her role in order to run against John Kline in Minnesota’s 2nd Congressional District.