1972 Election Cycle

Republican President Richard Nixon carried Minnesota by 5.5 points in what was the most narrowly decided presidential election across the country.

The DFL did pick up a seat on the Public Service Commission when former Governor Karl Rolvaag unseated P.K. Peterson. Following the 1972 election, seats on the Public Service Commission were filled via gubernatorial appointment.

U.S. Senator Walter Mondale emerged unscathed by the Nixon landslide with a double-digit win en route to a third term in the chamber.

All eight members of the U.S. House delegation – four Republicans and four DFLers – won reelection this cycle.

Associate Justices C. Donald Peterson and Fallon Kelly were each reelected to the Supreme Court without opposition.

Elections

Date Office Stage Winners Details
11/07/1972 U.S. Senate General Walter Mondale (Democratic-Farmer-Labor) won with 981,320 votes (56.67%) and a winning margin of +13.81
Candidate Gender Party Votes Percent
Walter Mondale Incumbent Man Democratic-Farmer-Labor 981,320 56.67
Phil Hansen Man Republican 742,121 42.86
Karl H. Heck Man Industrial Government 8,192 0.47

Senator Mondale was reelected to a third term. Mondale resigned on December 30, 1976 following his election to the Office of Vice-President of the United States on November 2, 1976. DFL Governor Wendell Anderson resigned his post to be appointed to Mondale's seat by his successor on December 30, 1976. Republican Rudy Boschwitz, who defeated Senator Anderson in the 1978 general election was appointed to the U.S. Senate on December 30, 1978 for the unexpired term ending January 3, 1979 to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Anderson on December 29, 1978.

Hansen was an ordained minister from Roseville.

Heck was a school janitor from White Bear Lake, Industrial Government nominee for Governor in 1970, and nominee for Lieutenant Governor in 1974. He was nominated by petition.

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11/07/1972 State House, District 67B General John Tomlinson (Nonpartisan) won with 6,870 votes (59.44%) and a winning margin of +18.88
Candidate Gender Party Votes Percent
John Tomlinson Man Nonpartisan 6,870 59.44
Howard C. (Howie) Kinney Man Nonpartisan 4,688 40.56
11/07/1972 State House, District 67A General Robert L. (Bob) Pavlak (Nonpartisan) won with 7,106 votes (63.75%) and a winning margin of +27.50
Candidate Gender Party Votes Percent
Robert L. (Bob) Pavlak Incumbent Man Nonpartisan 7,106 63.75
Steve Anderson Man Nonpartisan 4,041 36.25
11/07/1972 State House, District 66B General Tony L. Bennett (Nonpartisan) won with 7,045 votes (56.14%) and a winning margin of +12.27
Candidate Gender Party Votes Percent
Tony L. Bennett Incumbent Man Nonpartisan 7,045 56.14
Bruce Lindahl Man Nonpartisan 5,505 43.86

Lindahl was a science and mathematics teacher from St. Paul and former state Representative (HD 48, 1965-1967; HD 44B, 1967-1971).

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11/07/1972 State House, District 33B General E.W. (Bill) Quirin (Nonpartisan) won with 5,402 votes (51.65%) and a winning margin of +3.31
Candidate Gender Party Votes Percent
E.W. (Bill) Quirin Incumbent Man Nonpartisan 5,402 51.65
Darrell Strain Man Nonpartisan 5,056 48.35