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No clear path for Minnesota GOP as financial problems linger

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A consensus on the future direction of Minnesota's Republican Party is proving elusive, even after GOP leaders held a summit meeting to regroup from Election Day losses.

Politics in Minnesota reports the party made some progress on its financial problems this year by whittling its debt down to $1.5 million. A change in leadership will occur this spring, though, when the term of Party Chair Pat Shortridge expires and plenty of questions await his replacement.

Some activists worry that fundraising is not the strong suit of the party's growing libertarian faction. Others are raising doubts about whether to stick with an endorsement process that produced a Kurt Bills Senate campaign some found embarrassing.

Meanwhile, Republican legislators are preparing to settle in as the minority party at the State Capitol next month. Senate Republican Leader David Hann tells ECM Publishers "Our job is to make the arguments, not win the votes." Sen. Michelle Benson says the party is shifting from sadness into running mode.

Speaking of running, some of those at last weekend's meeting were lobbying for Hann to be the Republican challenger to Gov. Mark Dayton in two years.

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