CASS LAKE-In 2020, the highest recorded number of Native Americans ran for government office and this year’s midterm election candidates seem to be pushing for a repeat performance.
In data compiled by Indian Country Today, 113 Indigenous candidates are listed as running this year; including nine from Minnesota.
The spike in Indigenous candidates over the last six years has benefited Native Communities in a number of ways, the first and foremost, finally being able to claim a seat at the table of Federal Government that we were previously barred from.
More Native Americans in office means heightened visibility at all levels of government for the issues directly impacting our communities. This can be seen from the recent influx of initiatives both statewide and federally that have been passed in recent years to address native issues such as: the MMIW epidemic, boarding schools, and protecting the environment.
Minnesota’s Indigenous Candidates
- Erika Bailey-Johnson (Red Lake) – State House District 2B – Democrat
- Jamie Becker-Finn (LLBO) – State House District 42B – Democrat
- Steve Green (White Earth) – State House District 2B – Republican
- Peggy Flanagan (White Earth) – Lt Governor – Democrat
- Heather Keeler (Yankton Sioux/Eastern Shoshone) – State House District 4A – Democrat
- Alicia Kozlowski (Ojibwe) – State House District 8B – Democrat
- Mary Kunesh-Podein(Standing Rock Sioux) – State Senate District 39 – Democrat
- Ernest Joseph Oppegaard-Peltier (Anishinabe) – US House District 7 – People’s party
- Alan Roy (White Earth) – State Senate District 2 – Democrat
Community members who reside outside of the State, can visit their official state website to find an example ballot alongside candidate platforms, polling locations and candidate websites.