THE BLOG
02/28/2008 03:48 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

DNC Minnesota Superdelegates

HuffPost's OffTheBus members produced these superdelegate profiles as part of its Superdelegate Investigation. You can find all profiles here.

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Donna Cassutt
Associate Chair, State DFL
Minnesota

Basic Bio
* Jewelry designer http://fundrace.huffingtonpost.com/neighbors.php?type=name&lname=Cassutt&fname=Donna&older=yes

Political interests and issues
* Cassutt was a delegate at the 2004 Democratic National Convention for Dennis Kucinich. http://www.democracynow.org/2004/7/27/2004_dnc_opens_in_boston_democracy

Involvement in the Democratic Party
* Cassutt was re-elected as Associate Chair by acclamation on Feb. 10, 2007. http://www.therochesterdemocrat.com/index.php/welcome/comments/melendez_dfl_state_officers_re_elected/

Pledged Status
* Barack Obama, Feb. 29, 2008 http://www.minnesotamonitor.com/tag.do;jsessionid=49C338351D4196B98766EEBBA78ECBC5?tag=Donna+Cassutt
* Endorsed Obama because Obama won the caucus strawpoll in Minnesota.
* Feb. 29, 2008 Joint statement with Brian Melendez, state DFL chair, who also endorsed Obama a the same time: "We are not joining Senator Obama's campaign, since our loyalty lies first and foremost with the DFL Party itself; and we will not be using either the Party's resources, or our own personal time, energy, or other resources, in promoting his campaign or any other. This announcement simply reflects our desire to let the more than two hundred thousand DFLers who braved a cold winter night, long lines, and bustling crowds on Caucus Night know that their voices were heard and that their Party's heads are honoring their choice." http://www.minnesotamonitor.com/tag.do;jsessionid=49C338351D4196B98766EEBBA78ECBC5?tag=Donna+Cassutt
* From the same statement: "...we doubt that the Party needs so many superdelegates and, if the number is cut, state-party leaders should be among the first to go. If a reform is proposed to that effect, we will support it. Meanwhile, our votes belong to the people that we serve, and we will cast those votes according to their wishes." http://www.minnesotamonitor.com/tag.do;jsessionid=49C338351D4196B98766EEBBA78ECBC5?tag=Donna+Cassutt

Contributions to Candidates
* 2004, $215, Dennish Kucinich http://fundrace.huffingtonpost.com/neighbors.php?type=name=CassuttFname=Donna&older=yes

This profile was produced through HuffPost"s OffTheBus Superdelegate Investigation. All profiles will be donated to the Superdelegate Transparency Project. If you have information that should be added to this profile, please join the Superdelegate Transparency Project and update the profile there.

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Ken Foxworth

Minnesota DNC Committeeman


Basic Bio
* Foxworth was raised in the suburbs of St. Louis and went to the University of Minnesota on a football scholarship. By his own admission, he "made it to the University... only because he could play football." However once there, he excelled academically, earning an advanced degree.
* Currently concentrates his efforts on helping underprivileged African American students in the Minneapolis, MN, area realize their potential and attain a great education, much like he did.
* Is a very charismatic leader among Minnesota Democrats, serving as an enthusiastic voice for the African American community as head of the Democratic Midwest Black Caucus. [See below sources]

Political interests and issues
* Associated with Fathers for School Success, a 2006 Minneapolis-based initiative. FSS is related to the Black Star Project, a similar Chicago initiative.
* Co-chair of MN division of Putting Fans First, "a new coalition of sports superfans and concerned consumers uniting to address the soaring cost of TV sports programming."
* Director of A Commitment to Excellence (ACE) program started in 1999 - $1 million project aimed at increasing graduation rate and college attendance rate young African-American boys in Minneapolis area.
* In 1995, raised almost $100,000 for minority scholarships by running from Duluth to Minneapolis (150+ miles)

Involvement in the Democratic Party
* Heads Democratic Party's Midwest Black Caucus

Pledged Status
* Endorsed Sen. Barack Obama, but not until after MN caucus on Feb. 5 (unclear as to exact date), for unknown reasons.

Contributions to Candidates
* Frequent donor to Minnesota Democratic Farmer Labor Party ($3,000 total from 11/02 - 8/04)

Previous Campaign Work
* Endorsed Howard Dean in the 2004 Democratic Primary
* Volunteered for John Kerry's Minnesota Kitchen Cabinet as a liaison to the African American Community

Connections to Politicians, Leaders on State Level
* Minneapolis Mayor R. T. Rybak

This profile was produced through HuffPost"s OffTheBus Superdelegate Investigation. If you have information that should be added to this profile, please send an email to campaigntrail@huffingtonpost.com with "superdelegate profile" in the subject line. All profiles will be donated to the Superdelegate Transparency Project

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Nancy Larson

Dassel, Minnesota

Basic Bio
* Lives in rural Dassel, MN, which is about 60 miles west of the Twin Cities, with her husband Merle.
* Graduated summa cum laude from St. Cloud State University with an undergraduate degree in mass communications/public relations and political science.
* From 1978-1988, worked as a reporter for the Dassel-Cokato Enterprise/Dispatch. http://www.flaherty-hood.com/NAL.htm
* As of 10/11/06, registered as a lobbyist for the Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities and the Coalition of Utility Cities http://www.politicsinminnesota.com/politics-minnesota-weekly-report-vol-2-issue-19-10-11-2006
* Lobbyist work is done through Flaherty & Hood PA of St. Paul, "a public affairs law firm providing legislative advocacy and legal representation to greater Minnesota in the areas of land use, economic development, labor and employment relations, and the environment." http://www.cfboard.state.mn.us/lobby/lbdetail/lb7949.html
http://www.flaherty-hood.com/
* Currently works as a lobbyist for the Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities (Senior Legislative Associate), particularly on this: "...substantive changes to the state's annexation law that will lead to better land-use planning, energy conservation, greater environmental protection, fairer tax bases, and fewer conflicts between townships and cities." http://www.greatermncities.org/annexation.html
* Was the DFL-endorsed candidate for lieutenant governor in 1994 and was the DFL-endorsed candidate for state auditor in 1998. http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-62573879.html
http://www.flaherty-hood.com/NAL.htmhttp://www.d.umn.edu/~maplwww/facultyfall05.htm
* Served as the Executive Director of the Minnesota Association of Small Cities for over 17 years. http://www.d.umn.edu/~maplwww/facultyfall05.htm
* Larson also works closely with other organizations interested in strengthening the economic and social base of small cities. Currently serves as a member of the board for the University of Minnesota Morris' Center for Small Towns and for the University of Minnesota Humphrey Institute's Community Assistantship Program (CAP). http://www.d.umn.edu/~maplwww/facultyfall05.htm
* Member of Center for Rural Policy and Development, "a rural policy think tank that would provide policymakers, rural advocates and concerned citizens an objective, unbiased and politically "unspun" examination of contemporary rural issues." http://www.mnsu.edu/ruralmn/membership.php

Political interests and issues
* Has spent her political career as a lobbyist for small cities and rural issues. http://www.voteforminnesota.com/article_detail.aspx?id=I1408816151

Involvement in the Democratic Party
* Involved in party politics since the 1970s. http://www.in-forum.com/articles/index.cfm?id=129759§ion=News&freebie_check&CFID=16905371&CFTOKEN=24398388&jsessionid=88308e584bd0191b4114
* National Committee Member for Minnesota http://www.dfl.org/index.asp?Type=B_BASIC&SEC={843B137E-A751-462F-9CF4-295E384F5FC7}
* Ran as the DLF endorsed candidate for lieutenant governor in 1994 and as the DLF endorsed candidate for state auditor in 1998. http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-62573879.html
http://www.flaherty-hood.com/NAL.htmhttp://www.d.umn.edu/~maplwww/facultyfall05.htm
* Was a delegate for Howard Dean in 2004. http://www.democracyforamerica.com/press/archives/2005/02

Involvement in the 2008 Election
* Uncommitted at this time, one of three Minnesota superdelegates to still be so. http://www.minnesotamonitor.com/showDiary.do?diaryId=3439
* Appears to have dropped an earlier endorsement of Clinton. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/al-giordano/exodus-of-clintons-super_b_86778.html
* In an interview on CNN on 2/11/08, she said, "I will not make up my own mind. That's for sure. I'll look at the state, first, and then the nation. But I don't think any of us want to be spoilers and overturn what's happening. I think it's going to be very difficult if we get down to that point." http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0802/11/ltm.02.html
* In an interview for Minnesota Public Radio, Larson stated that "she hasn't set a date for her decision... she'll just know when it's time." Ms. Larson said that her decision won't be about favoring one candidate over another. Ultimately, it will be about holding the party together. http://minnesota.publicradio.org/display/web/2008/03/05/superdelegates/
* Feels the entire "superdelegate" process needs to be looked at because it isn't working. http://www.startribune.com/podcasts/15506062.html
* Status as an uncommitted superdelegate is getting her a lot of interviews and press, both locally and nationally. http://www.independentreview.net/larson-faces-super-big-decision-2557

Contributions to Candidates
* Larson's last donation was $300.00 to the DNC in 2004. http://fundrace.huffingtonpost.com/neighbors.php?type=name&lname=Larson&fname=Nancy&search=Search

Previous Campaign Work and Experience
* Ran for lieutenant governor in 1994 and state auditor in 1998. http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-62573879.html
http://www.flaherty-hood.com/NAL.htmhttp://www.d.umn.edu/~maplwww/facultyfall05.htm
* Endorsed Howard Dean for President in 2004. http://www.democracyforamerica.com/press/archives/2005/02

Connections to Politicians, Leaders on State Level * 8/30/07 - Supported Al Franken for Senate. http://www.alfranken.com/content/endorsements/ "He reminds me a lot of good old Senator Wellstone -- honest, open, for the people," Larson said.

http://minnesota.publicradio.org/display/web/2007/08/30/senatefair/

This profile was produced through HuffPost"s OffTheBus Superdelegate Investigation. If you have information that should be added to this profile, please send an email to campaigntrail@huffingtonpost.com with "superdelegate profile" in the subject line. All profiles will be donated to the Superdelegate Transparency Project.

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Brian Melendez

Minnesota

Basic Bio
*Received A.B. Harvard University 1986, cum laude
*M.T.S Harvard University 1991
*J.D. Harvard University 1991, cum laude
*Melendez is a full partner at the Faegre & Benson law firm as a litigation attorney covering a wide range of practice areas.

Involvement in Democratic Party
*Melendez has been involved with the Democratic party since the early 1990's and has held a variety of party posts, beginning as a local unit chair, city chair, and is currently state chair of the Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor party.
*Melendez has been covered in the press in a number of different ways. He was the subject of a Minnesota Law and Politics article as part of their super lawyer series. He has been quoted frequently in the press as DFL chair in relation to the ongoing battles with the state GOP.
*People would probably know him from his press conferences and articles associated with the DFL.

Personal political interests and issues
*Melendez appears to be a fairly progressive individual, but has sublimated his personal issues to the greater issues of the party. He has been most notably associated with creating a more efficient state party operation and is known as an able manager and leader.
*Melendez comes from very humble origins, but because of Great Society education programs was not limited by his family's finances. He wants to make sure that opportunity exists for all citizens.

Involvement in 2008 election - campaign appearances, statements
*Melendez has not publicly declared support for a candidate. He has been involved in the 2008 election on more of a behind the scenes, state level basis. He has been working to create an environment where Democratic candidates, and party units, can succeed.
*Melendez makes regular appearances at party-wide functions, and on behalf of individual elected officials, both state and national.
*Melendez is very active in fundraising for the state DFL.

Contributions to Candidates
*This information is not currently available.

Family's Involvement in Politics, the Democratic Party
*No

Previous Campaign Work
*There is no information available to suggest he has been anything but a strict party guy.

Connections to Politicians, Leaders On State Level
*Other than perhaps as a volunteer, there is no evidence available that Brian has been actively employed by any prominent candidates.

This profile was produced through HuffPost"s OffTheBus Superdelegate Investigation. All profiles will be donated to the Superdelegate Transparency Project. If you have information that should be added to this profile, please join the Superdelegate Transparency Project and update the profile there.

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Mee Moua

State Senator

Bio
*Mee Moua is a Hmong American politician and member of the Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party.
*She currently serves in the Minnesota SenateSaint Paul, Minnesota. She is serving her third term, chairs the Judiciary Committee and holds the highest
office of any Hmong American politician.
*She was first elected to theDistrict 67 seat on January 29, 2002 with 60% of the vote, replacing
previous senator Randy Kelly, who had resigned to become mayor of Saint Paul.
*Born June 30, 1969 in Laos. Her father was a medic in the Vietnam War.
*At the end of the war, her family fled to Thailand when Moua was five years old.
*In 1978 her family, along with other Hmong refugees, moved to the United States.
*Moua is part of the Democratic National Committee and a serves as a board member for the Asian and Pacific
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mee_Moua
*Occupation: Attorney
*Education: BA, Brown University JD, University of Minnesota
*MPAff, Lyndon Baines Johnson School of Public Affairs, University of Texas

Committees
*Judiciary, Chair
*Finance - Public Safety Budget Division
*Finance - Transportation Budget and Policy Division
*Taxes
*Taxes - Property Tax Division
*Transportation

This profile was produced through HuffPost"s OffTheBus Superdelegate Investigation. All profiles will be donated to the Superdelegate Transparency Project. If you have information that should be added to this profile, please join the Superdelegate Transparency Project and update the profile there.

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Rick Stafford

Chair of the DNC GLBT Caucus

Minnesota


Basic Bio
* Chair of the DNC GLBT Caucus http://www.democrats.org/a/communities/lgbt_community/
* Former Chairman of the Minnesota Democratic-Farmers-Laborer Party http://www.kaisernetwork.org/reports/1993/06/a930608.13.html
* First openly gay state chair of any state of either major party http://www.kaisernetwork.org/reports/1993/06/a930608.13.html
* HIV Positive http://www.kaisernetwork.org/reports/1993/06/a930608.13.html


Personal Political Interests and Issues
* Posts Frequently at MNPUBLIUS.COM
* Gay/Lesbian/Bisexual/Transgender issues http://www.democrats.org/a/communities/lgbt_community/


Involvement in the Democratic Party
* Former chair of MN Democratic Party
* 2000 Democratic Convention was his 8th http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-64193746.html
* National Stonewall Democrats Board of Directors http://www.stonewalldemocrats.org/2005/05/board_of_direct.php


Involvement in the 2008 Election
* Led move of MN caucus to become part of 2008 "Super Tuesday" 2/4/08 http://www.politicsinminnesota.com/node/34
* Pledged to Senator Clinton http://www.hillaryclinton.com/news/release/view/?id=2235
* Part of Clinton's Minnesota Steering Committee (as announced Dec. 13, 2007) http://www.gwu.edu/~action/2008/clinton/clintonorgmn.html

This profile was produced through HuffPost"s OffTheBus Superdelegate Investigation. All profiles will be donated to the Superdelegate Transparency Project. If you have information that should be added to this profile, please join the Superdelegate Transparency Project and update the profile there.

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Jackie Stevenson

Minnesota

Basic Bio
* Stevenson has been involved in politics for almost all her life. She's been involved in the DFL (Minnesota's Democratic Farmer Labor Party) since the 1950's. http://www.minnpost.com/stories/2008/02/15/902/who_are_these_folks_and_why_should_you_care
* Currently, she's involved with the DFL's feminist caucus, holding office as political director. http://www.dflfc.org/directors.htm


Political interests and issues
* Stevenson has been heavily involved in the DFL and its feminist caucus. The Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party is the Minnesota version of the national Democratic party. It has its roots in third-party protest movements. "The DFL came into being in its modern form when the Minnesota Democratic and Farmer-Labor parties merged in April 1944." http://www.dfl.org/


Involvement in the Democratic Party
* Stevenson is a political director and past president of the DLF Feminist Caucus. The DLF caucus supports causes like the Federal Equal Rights Amendment, Roe vs. Wade, contraceptives research and access, anti-discrimination laws, and more. The caucus endorses and supports candidates that support these principles. http://www.dflfc.org/directors.htm
* Elected DNC member, at least since 2005 as she supported Howard Dean's run for Party Chairman. http://www.democracyforamerica.com/press/view/63


Involvement in the 2008 Election
* Stevenson has pledged her support to Sen. Clinton, as early as June 2007. http://www.hillaryclinton.com/news/release/view/?id=2235
* Stevenson is a member of Clinton's Minnesota Steering Committee. http://www.hillaryclinton.com/news/release/view/?id=4698
* The MinnPost has a March 5th article covering Stevenson's involvement in the campaign and her thoughts after Clinton's win in Ohio. http://www.minnpost.com/stories/2008/03/05/1074/clinton_victories_re-energize_state_supporters
* Another MinnPost article from Feb 15th shows her support of Clinton as well. "As long as she's a candidate, she has my support,'' said Stevenson. http://www.minnpost.com/stories/2008/02/15/902/who_are_these_folks_and_why_should_you_care


Contributions to Candidates
* Stevenson has made a number of contributions to the Minnesota Democratic Farmer Labor Party, from 2001 to 2006.
* Stevenson donated $250 to Mark Dayton's senate campaign in 2006.
* Stevenson donated $500 to Sen. Kerry's presidential campaign in 2004.
* Stevenson donated $200 to Sen. Bill Bradley's presidential campaign in 1999. http://www.fec.gov/finance/disclosure/norindsea.shtml


Previous Campaign Work and Experience
* Stevenson was involved in Sen. John Kerry's presidential campaign in 2004. Was a member of the Minnesotans For John Kerry Steering Committee. http://www.gwu.edu/~action/2004/kerry/kerrorgmn.html
* Stevenson helped organize the DFL for Kerry, as well as the senior community. http://www.gwu.edu/~action/2004/kerry/kerrgenmn2.html
* In a MinnPost article, Stevenson mentioned she worked on Eugene McCarthy's congressional campaign in the 1950's. http://www.minnpost.com/stories/2008/02/15/902/who_are_these_folks_and_why_should_you_care
* Stevenson had also endorsed Democrat Mike Ciresi during his 2008 race for U.S. Senate. http://mnpublius.com/2007/07/more-ciresi-endorsements/

This profile was produced through HuffPost"s OffTheBus Superdelegate Investigation. All profiles will be donated to the Superdelegate Transparency Project. If you have information that should be added to this profile, please join the Superdelegate Transparency Project and update the profile there.

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