Monday, December 4

Paula Overby, third-party congressional candidate in Minnesota, dies before election

Third-party candidate Paula Overby, who was running in a competitive race for the congressional seat in Minnesota’s 2nd District, died Wednesday of heart complications, Overby’s son confirmed to WCCO CBS Minnesota

WCCO reporter and anchor Esme Murphy was scheduled to interview Overby on Tuesday, Murphy said in a tweet, and after the Marijuana Legal Now candidate did not show up, Murphy was told Overby had been hospitalized.

(credit: Paula Overby)

Overby, who was running on the Legal Marijuana Now ticket died just about a month before the midterm elections. The office of Minnesota’s secretary of state of will not be postponing the election, and Overby’s name will remain on the ballot.

The Republican challenger in the race, Tyler Kistner, is pausing his events for the next two days, out of respect for Overby’s family. “This is a very sad day for Minnesota’s Second District,” Kistner said in a statement. “Paula Overby cared deeply about our state, and the principles she believed in. It was an honor to have gotten to know Paula throughout this campaign.”

In an odd coincidence, this is the second consecutive congressional election in which the Marijuana Legal Now candidate in Minnesota’s 2nd Congressional District died just before the general election. In September 2020, Adam Weeks died, apparently of an accidental fentanyl overdose. After his death, the The Star Tribune reported that before his death, Weeks had left a voicemail for a friend saying that Republicans had recruited him to run for the seat just to take votes from Democratic Rep. Angie Craig. 

The 2nd District, which encompasses a suburb south of Minneapolis, is rated as a toss-up by Cook Political report..

Aaron Navarro contributed to this report.

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