Walz won't run for Minn. governor, so who will?


The 2010 governor race speculation and chatter is so apparent since Election Day you'd think Gov. Tim Pawlenty is already a lame duck. We've still got time to burn with that mullet-loving man before we can even think of ousting him. 

MinnPost broke big news this weekend when Eric Black spoke to Rep. Tim Walz who confirmed he will not run for governor. Walz was considered a top pick for the Democratic ticket as a two-term member of Congress who manages to reach strong middle ground in an often Republican-leaning district. 

"I'm in the right position to help the people in my district in this critical time," Walz said. "We were never going to do it."
So who else might run for the spot? A couple other names made news this weekend.

The Southwest Journal does a piece about R.T. Rybak's interest in a state office run, but it's still all speculation. 

Rybak could make the first part of Miller's request easy should he decide to run for governor, which he's admitted he is considering. The gubernatorial election isn't until 2010, meaning Rybak could run for mayor in 2009 and focus on becoming governor the next. Should he lose in the gubernatorial race, he then could still return as mayor if Minneapolis voters were to give him a third term. 

But a lot of talk seems to be focused on an either/or situation. If Rybak runs for mayor, no gubernatorial bid. If he runs for governor, no reelection. 

State Sen. Paul Thissen is already on the list of Democrats running. And perhaps Steve Kelley will throw his hat in the ring soon? MNPublius says Kelley all but announced his run this weekend at an Ashwin Madia "Thank You" event. They don't give us quotes to go off of, but this goes along with rumors we've heard as well.

Who is the Democrat's best pick? Is there someone we haven't heard from that could come from behind?