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DFL holds peaceful Minneapolis caucus do-over after violence-marred event

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Two weeks after a DFL caucus meeting in Minneapolis was promptly ended by brawling, the party held a peaceful do-over Wednesday night, the Star Tribune reports.

The meeting Feb. 4 at the Brian Coyle Community Center, attended primarily by members of the city's Somali-American community, was halted when arguments spun into fights as activists fought over who was in charge of the meeting. Among the injured was City Council aide Ilhan Omar.

It was important to have another meeting to send a message, DFL Chair Ken Martin told the Star Tribune.

“It’s really about what kind of message we’re sending to immigrant communities and to the Somali-American community about their participation in this process. We value their participation,” he said.

The party business at hand was the state House race for the seat held by Rep. Phyllis Kahn, who is being challenged by Minneapolis School Board Member Mohamud Noor. A crowd of about 700 turned out for the meeting Wednesday (FOX 9 called it about 500), which had been moved to the University of Minnesota's Coffman Memorial Union, and 421 participants elected delegates in the intraparty showdown, the Star Tribune reported.

In the end, Noor walked away with 28 delegates to Kahn's 15. It was one of just 12 precinct meetings in the House district (the other precincts elected delegates earlier this month). Delegates are key to winning the party's endorsement at the DFL convention in April, and it's not clear either side has the necessary 60 percent of delegates needed to lock the endorsement, MinnPost reported.

“I think we got a good number of delegates,” Noor told MinnPost. “That shows the spirit of the process and we'll come back to the convention and see how things stand."

Noor had urged the crowd to embrace a change in leadership, KARE 11 reported. "It's not the time for others to decide the future for us. Our voice is ours we have to decide for ourselves," Noor said.

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