Public Service Commissioner State Executive Office

Elections: 1968-1972. On May 25, 1967, the legislature created the a three-member Public Service Commission under the Department of Public Service. Members from the Railroad and Warehouse Commissioner served out their term on the Commission and were eligible for reelection for one six-year term through the 1972 cycle. Thereafter members of the Public Service Commission were appointed by the governor with advice and consent of the state Senate.

Most recent elections

Date Office Stage Winners Details
11/07/1972 Public Service Commissioner General Karl Rolvaag (Democratic-Farmer-Labor) won with 863,200 votes (51.70%) and a winning margin of +3.39
Candidate Gender Party Votes Percent
Karl Rolvaag Man Democratic-Farmer-Labor 863,200 51.70
P. Kenneth (P.K.) Peterson Incumbent Man Republican 806,552 48.30

Following the 1972 election, seats on the Public Service Commission were filled via gubernatorial appointment.

Rolvaag was a former Lieutenant Governor (1955-1963), Governor (1963-1967), and U.S. Ambassador to Iceland (1967-1969).

Peterson was Chair of the Public Service Commission. Peterson's loss was the 14th defeat by a Railroad / Railroad and Warehouse Commissioner / Public Service Commissioner at the ballot box following Anti-Monopolist Alonzo Edgerton in 1875, Republican-turned-Prohibitionist William Marshall in 1881, Democratic-People's nominees Peter Rindal and Thomas Knox in 1900, Republican Christian Laurisch in 1934, Republican Frank Matson in 1936, Farmer-Laborite Harold Atwood in 1938, Farmer-Laborite Charles Munn in 1940, Republican Rollin Johnson in the 1944 GOP primary and 1948 general election, Republican Elling Knutson in the 1952 GOP primary, Clifford Peterson in the 1954 DFL primary, and Republican Wally Lund in 1958.

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09/12/1972 Public Service Commissioner Primary Karl Rolvaag (Democratic-Farmer-Labor) won with 114,502 votes (46.29%) and a winning margin of +21.08
Candidate Gender Party Votes Percent
Karl Rolvaag Man Democratic-Farmer-Labor 114,502 46.29
Bill Walker Man Democratic-Farmer-Labor 62,360 25.21
William R. (W.R.) Youngdahl Man Democratic-Farmer-Labor 60,847 24.60
William Quady Man Democratic-Farmer-Labor 9,673 3.91

Rolvaag was a former Lieutenant Governor (1955-1963), Governor (1963-1967), and U.S. Ambassador to Iceland (1967-1969).

Walker was a state Representative (HD 58A, 1971-1973) from Pine River and publisher of the Pequot Lakes Country Echo newspaper. Youndahl was a Minneapolis resident, a plant protection officer at Twin Cities Arsenal, former Lansing, Michigan School Board member, and 1966 DFL Railroad and Warehouse Commissioner nominee.

Quady was a private investigator from Minneapolis and former Minneapolis police officer.

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09/12/1972 Public Service Commissioner Primary P. Kenneth (P.K.) Peterson (Republican) won with 159,782 votes (100.00%) and a winning margin of +100.00
Candidate Gender Party Votes Percent
P. Kenneth (P.K.) Peterson Incumbent Man Republican 159,782 100.00

Commissioner Peterson was renominated without opposition in his campaign for a second term. He had been elected once to the Railroad and Warehouse Commission. Peterson was Chair of the Public Service Commission.

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11/03/1970 Public Service Commissioner General Ronald L. (Ron) Anderson (Democratic-Farmer-Labor) won with 715,734 votes (54.56%) and a winning margin of +9.11
Candidate Gender Party Votes Percent
Ronald L. (Ron) Anderson Incumbent Man Democratic-Farmer-Labor 715,734 54.56
C. Elmer Anderson Man Republican 596,159 45.44

Commissioner Ron Anderson was reelected to a third term. He had been elected twice to the Railroad and Warehouse Commission.

C. Elmer Anderson was a former Lieutenant Governor (1939-1941, 1943-1951) and Governor (1951-1955).

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09/15/1970 Public Service Commissioner Primary C. Elmer Anderson (Republican) won with 221,870 votes (100.00%) and a winning margin of +100.00
Candidate Gender Party Votes Percent
C. Elmer Anderson Man Republican 221,870 100.00

Anderson was a former Lieutenant Governor (1939-1941, 1943-1951) and Governor (1951-1955).

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