Tom Horner picks Jim Mulder for governor's race running mate

IPer Tom Horner has named Jim Mulder as his running mate in the 2010 governor's race, adding another layer of former-Republican wonkishness, and outstate expertise, to his campaign.

Among a laundry list of public policy initiatives, Mulder spent the last two decades as executive director of the Association of Minnesota Counties before stepping aside a few months ago.

In the AMC slot, he led the Minnesota Redesign initiative, part of which included a controversial proposal we told you about to do away with half of all State Patrol troopers as an efficiency move.

AMC hired Horner's PR firm, Himle/Horner, to help with the project, which fizzled in the Legislature.

Horner's spin on Mulder: "Neither of us has sought office before. We are not politicians. We are people who have invested our careers in public policy, community service and business."

The GOP spin from state party chair Tony Sutton: Mulder is a political insider and "cheerleader for higher taxes and more spending."

Horner's announcement rounds out the lieutenant governor candidate picks from the major players gunning for Tim Pawlenty's job.

Republican candidate Tom Emmer tapped conservative think-tanker Annette Meeks. On the DFL side, the endorsed candidate, Margaret Anderson Kelliher, picked Minnetonka city manager John Gunyou. Matt Entenza picked former TV anchorwoman Robyne Robinson, and Mark Dayton picked state Sen. Yvonne Prettner Solon.

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