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Minnesota state senator announces plan to retire at end of 2016

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After some 14 years in the state legislature, DFL incumbent Sen. Barbara Goodwin has announced her decision to retire at the end of 2016.

The District 41 senator made the announcement that she would not be seeking re-election next year at the DFL monthly meeting on Thursday evening, later revealing her decision on her Facebook page.

Both DFL state representatives for District 41, Reps. Carolyn Laine and Connie Bernardy, have announced they intend to run for her seat, with Goodwin saying she will remain neutral in the race.

"Both of our State Reps have announced their intent to run and good candidates from both sides of the district have stated their intention to run for the House seat depending on endorsement for the Senate," she said on Facebook.

"All are great candidates and good friends so I will stay neutral. Thanks so much for all the wonderful support I have received in the past five years in the Senate and in my six years in the House."

District 41 covers an area of the north metro, including Fridley, Columbia Heights and Saint Anthony.

Rep. Laine, a 5th-termer in the House, made a statement declaring her intention to run Thursday evening, paying tribute to Goodwin in the process.

"She has been a dynamo in the Senate, standing up for the undeserved and for common sense."

Sen. Goodwin last month won an award from the National Foundation of Women Legislators' for her work on mental health, women and children's issues.

She was first elected to the Minnesota House in 2000, and elected to the senate 10 years later, her bio says.

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