Facing primary challenge, St. Paul DFLer announces retirement

Tim Mahoney is stepping down after 22 years in the Legislature.

A long-serving state lawmaker from St. Paul has announced he'll step down at the end of his term, just a month after a primary challenger came forward.

Democrat Rep. Tim Mahoney, who was first elected to District 67A, covering St. Paul's Eastside, in 1998, has announced he will retire from the Legislature at the end of his term.

Rep. Mahoney, who is the chair of the House Jobs & Economic Development Finance Committee, has said he retires having been a "vocal advocate for the Eastside and a champion for Minnesota’s workers."

"It is time for me to enjoy the next chapter in my life," he said in a statement.

"I can’t thank the people of the Eastside enough for allowing me to represent them at the Capitol for the past two decades. I am looking forward to spending time with my wife, two daughters, three stepsons, and two grandsons."

His cites the redevelopment of the 3M site, the revitalization of the Phalen Corridor, and the construction of CHS Field as being among the successes he led on.

His announced retirement comes a little over a month after 28-year-old resident Hoang Murphy announced he'd be challenging Mahoney for the DFL nomination.

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Murphy, whose family brought him to St. Paul from Vietnam when he was a young boy and who previously worked for the Obama Administration, is among a cadre of progressive Democrats intent on challenging long-serving DFL incumbents.

This includes former Rep. Erin Murphy, who ran for the DFL nomination for governor in 2018, and who is challenging DFL Sen. Richard Cohen for his District 64 seat, covering western areas of St. Paul.

You can find more information about this movement in this Star Tribune article, which explains how Democratic challengers, particularly in Minneapolis and St. Paul, are eager to shift the party's dialogue in the Legislature to more progressive endeavors.

That said, the newspaper notes it's causing concern for some DFL leaders, who fear it could drain resources it needs to flip the Minnesota Senate in 2020, with Republicans currently holding just a slim majority of two seats.

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