GOP entrant in Minn. gov race is political vet 06 May 13

HAMEL, Minn. (AP) – A Republican rooted in Minnesota politics for a dozen years is the latest to announce a 2014 challenge to Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton.

Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson kicked off his campaign Sunday, saying his focus would be on education policy, tax rates and streamlining government. He joins businessman Scott Honour in vying for the GOP nomination.

Johnson has been on the governing board of Minnesota’s most populous county since 2009 and was a state legislator before that. He also serves in the state Republican Party’s leadership ranks, making him familiar to the activists who will endorse a candidate next year.

Johnson ran unsuccessfully for attorney general in 2006. Johnson says he will exit the race if his party endorses a different candidate at its convention, forgoing a primary.