Gov. Jack Dalrymple’s announcement Monday morning that he won’t seek re-election in 2016 was shocking to many, including some members of his own party. But, unlike many states, it’s unlikely the governor’s decision is foreshadowing a vast political shakeup in North Dakota.
Instead, it’ll make for great debate into next year as to who is the best fit to replace him. The Republicans, led by Dalrymple, have an undeniably “deep bench,” as state Sen. Kelly Armstrong, the GOP chairman from Dickinson, told Forum News Service capitol reporter Mike Nowatzki on Monday.
Within minutes of Dalrymple’s announcement, Lt. Gov. Drew Wrigley and Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem were on Republican’s lips as his potential replacement. Even Fargo businessman Doug Burgum said he’s “open minded” about considering a run for the office, despite having no prior political experience. Heck, we’ve even had people ask if Dickinson Mayor Dennis Johnson would consider running.
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