State GOP regroups, looks forward with 'pick-up-the-pieces meeting'

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Minnesota Republican activists gathered in Blaine Saturday for what a GOP operative dubbed "a lick your wounds and pick-up-the-pieces meeting," the Star Tribune reports.

Deputy party chair Kelly Fenton was forthright in the meeting, saying the state GOP got their "butts kicked this election," alluding to state Democrats' retaking of the state House and Senate on Election Day.

Among the items addressed Saturday was the party's $1.5 million debt -- and a new effort to attract new members to the party instead of banishing old ones like former GOP Gov. Arne Carlson after he teamed with Gov. Mark Dayton in an ad against the Voter ID amendment.

Also discussed Saturday coming up with possible candidates to run again Gov. Mark Dayton and U.S. Sen. Al Franken when their terms are up in two years.

Among the possibilities mentioned for a gubernatorial run was incoming Senate Minority Leader David Hann, who briefly ran for the post in 2010 -- as well as Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson, who indicated last month that he may consider running against Dayton.

Hann's backers aren't wasting any time drumming up support for a possible run. According to the Pioneer Press, they passed out stickers, T-shirts and glossy cards, pushing for a "Draft David Hann for Governor" campaign.

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