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Primaries are today

Minnesota voters can begin to make their candidate choices today.

The state primary election is Tuesday, Aug. 10, with voting from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

There is no city primary as Mayor Paul Hicks and at-large city council members Barb Hollenbeck and Mike Slavik have no challengers in the upcoming general election.

There is a race for one of the 1st District judges' position, currently held by Timothy Blakely. Stephen Baker and Larry Clark are challenging him.

And, of course, there is the Minnesota governor's race. While each of the major political parties has endorsed candidates, they are being challenged.

Mark Dayton, Matt Entenza and Peter Idusogie are challenging the endorsed Democratic candidate Margaret Anderson Kelliher.

The endorsed Republican candidate Tom Emmer faces opposition from Ole Savior, Leslie Davis and Bob Carney Jr.

Rob Hahn, Phil Rattee, Rahn Workcuff and John Uldrich are challenging the Independence Party endorsed candidate Tom Horner.

At the state level, both the Democrats and Republicans also have a race for attorney general - Sharon Anderson and Chris Barden face each other for the Republicans, and Lori Swanson and Leo Meyer face each other for the Democrats. The field must be reduced to one candidate for each party.

In Dakota County there is one primary race -- the commissioner seat currently held by Nancy Shouweiler. She faces challenges from Linda Appel and Bill Klein. Hastings area Commissioner Joe Harris is not up for re-election this year.

While each of the Soil and Water and Conservation Districts - 1 and 2 - has more than two candidates, there will be no primary. State law mandates that particular race.

Other candidates for county races (no primary races) are: Kathleen Gaylord (incumbent) and Molly Park, commissioner District 2; Paul Krause (incumbent), District 6; Dave Bellows (incumbent) and Mitch Scott, sheriff; and James Backstrom, attorney.

For state offices (Hastings area), House of Representatives District 57B, incumbent Denny McNamara, Republican, Hastings, is being challenged by Dave Page, Democrat, Hastings.

For Senate District 57, Karin Housley, Republican, Afton, is challenging incumbent Katie Sieben, Democrat, Cottage Grove. There is no primary race for any of the above races as there are two candidates, at most, for the offices.