1890 Election Cycle
Democrats claimed their first statewide office since 1873 with Adolph Biermann winning the race for Auditor by double-digits. Republicans won the remaining six statewide offices – with Governor William Merriam eking out a reelection victory by less than a point over former state Supreme Court Justice, state legislator, and U.S. Representative Thomas Wilson. GOP nominees carried each of the other five offices by less than six points: Gideon Ives in the open seat for Lieutenant Governor, Fred Brown in the open seat for Secretary of State, Attorney General Moses Clapp, Treasurer Joseph Bobleter, and Charles Holcomb for Clerk of the Supreme Court.
Four of the five Republican U.S. Representatives were knocked out of office – two by Democrats, one by a Democrat-Farmers’ Alliance nominee (William Harries), and one by a Farmers’ Alliance-Prohibition nominee (Kittel Halvorson).
The GOP majority in the Senate turned to a plurality – 25 Republicans, 16 Democrats, and 13 from the Farmers’ Alliance. In the state House Democrats outnumbered the GOP for the first time since the 1st Legislature – 52 to 43 – with 19 from the Farmers’ Alliance.