MINNEAPOLIS, MN — The Minneapolis Mayor’s race will take place in November of 2017. While there are more than 10 months remaining, one Republican has announced his candidacy for the traditionally blue city.
Abdimalik Askar, a candidate in 2012 for the presidency in Somalia, and the Republican-endorsed candidate in 2014 and 2016 for the deep blue 60B race has announced his candidacy for Mayor in Minneapolis via his personal Facebook page.
In the overwhelmingly Democratic house district, Askar made little impact with voters or media until scandal arose within the campaign of democratic challenger and election night victor Ilhan Omar. Controversy surrounded Omar’s campaign in August when news broke on Omar’s personal marriages.
Askar’s campaign gained attention after releasing this statement to the press:
“ Republican candidate for MN House 60B Abdimalik Askar calls for more facts and a forthright response from Ilhan Omar. “We all know what has been alleged about Omar illegally marrying her brother to commit immigration fraud. It is a serious accusation and would certainly disqualify her from representing district 60B if true,” said Somali-American and Republican-endorsed Abdimalik Askar. “The truly odd thing about the story is how Omar’s campaign has chosen to respond. Instead of having her brother explain who he married or producing any sort of documentation, Omar released a statement calling the accusations a racist witch-hunt. I’m obviously very much in favor of a Somali being elected in 60B, and my questions about this situation are like everyone’s. The constituents that Omar wishes to represent, myself included, would simply like a clear non-political answer about the allegations. If she can’t provide that, what kind of representative is she going to be?”
Abdimalik Askar is the father of five and is completing his PhD as he makes his second run for MN House 60B. He strongly believes in personal freedoms and helping all of his constituents reach the American Dream.”
Ten days following the release of this statement, Askar abruptly withdrew his candidacy for the seat at Minnesota’s Capitol. Askar said the decision was solely based on personal matters affecting his life.
Askar posted a blue flyer explaining his education and experience, and lists his priorities for his mayoral race. Priorities include: “jobs, jobs, jobs, “ “safety, safety, safety,” “housing, housing,” “education, education,” “health, health.”
Askar’s announcement will be the first for conservative constituents. Legally, the Office of the Mayor is nonpartisan – however, candidates have been known to seek and attend partisan support and events. Other candidates that have announced include: Raymond Dehn, Jacob Frey, Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges, Nekima Levy-Pounds, and Aswar Rahman.