Candidates 'parry': GOP primary race for Walz's seat turns bitter

A Republican primary fight between state Sen. Mike Parry and former state Rep. Allen Quist in southern Minnesota sharpened this week, with the candidates trading insults and charges of distortion. The two will square off in an Aug. 14 primary, and the winner will take on Rep. Tim Walz, D-Minn., in November.
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The two Republicans vying to be the GOP candidate to challenge incumbent Rep. Tim Walz, D-Minn., are in a nasty fight in the southern Minnesota district.

Mike Parry's campaign sent out an e-mail accusing Allen Quist of failing to admit to several controversial statements he made in the past. Parry in the e-mail asks Quist to "man up" and take responsibility for his prior statements, the New Ulm Journal reports. Parry is challenging comments attributed to Quist that suggest he is sexist and against gays, the newspaper says.

Quist fired back, the newspaper reported: "Parry has gone entirely negative this campaign. None of his attacks have been on the important issues," said Quist, "[His actions] are absolutely disgusting. Mike Parry is an embarrassment to the Republican Party."

Parry is also being asked about his own controversial tweets. Parry was asked Tuesday if he’d be willing to explain tweets in May of 2009, about six months before he ran for the state Senate in a special election, the Mankato Free Press reports. In one, Parry tweeted: “What’s with Dems and Pedophiles?”

A second tweet referenced the president: “read the exclusive on Mr O in Newsweek. He is a Power Hungry Arrogant Black Man.”

The winner of the Aug. 14 primary will challenge Democratic Rep. Tim Walz, who is seeking a fourth term in a typically competitive congressional district that's considered by national observers to be a safe bet for the incumbent this year, the Associated Press reports.

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