SAINT PAUL — Today, Secretary of State Steve Simon presided over Minnesota’s 40th Electoral College Assembly where the state’s ten electors cast their official Electoral College votes for Hillary Clinton for president and Tim Kaine for vice president of the United States of America. In Minnesota, electors are required by law to vote for the presidential candidate who won the state and to whom they were pledged.
Over 250 Minnesotans, including more than 160 high school students and teachers from across the state, attended the assembly. In his opening remarks, Secretary Simon highlighted the many ways Minnesota voters made history in 2016, including the state’s return to number one in voter turnout in the nation.
“I’m happy to say when all the ballots were counted in all the states on November 8th, Minnesota was again number one in the country in voter turnout,” Secretary Simon said at the assembly. “Being number one in America is saying something, and that should make us proud.”
Secretary Simon also presented the Medallion Award from the National Association of Secretaries of State, the highest honor that a secretary of state can make, to Minnesota’s high school students and principals. The award is for their commitment and participation to Students Vote 2016—Minnesota’s first statewide mock election for high schools—and inspiring the next generation of voters to be engaged. Over 96,000 students cast a mock ballot for U.S. President and got hands on experience with the electoral process.
“Democracy is in your hands now,” Secretary Simon said to Minnesota’s high school students. “When you’re eligible to vote, stand up, step up, and be a voter.”
Brooke Chesley, a senior at Marshall High School and President of the Minnesota Association of Student Councils; and David Adney, Executive Director of Minnesota Association of Secondary School Principals, accepted the award on behalf of Minnesota’s high school students and principals.
Students from schools in Albert Lea, Apple Valley, Brainerd, Buffalo, Burnsville, Chatfield, Clearbrook, Detroit Lakes, Duluth, Forest Lake, Granada, Hawley, Hermantown, Hopkins, Mahtomedi, Minneapolis, New Prague, Oakdale, Rochester, Saint Paul, Sleepy Eye, Windom and Woodbury were in attendance at the assembly.
Minnesota’s 10 electors are from the Democratic-Farmer Labor Party and include: Fred Knudsen (District 1), Roger Gehrke (District 2), Marge Hoffa (District 3), Raymond Hess (District 4), Jill Garcia (District 5), Betsy O'Berry (District 6), Mike Wammer (District 7), Mary Murphy (District 8), Jules Goldstein (At-Large), and Sherrie Pugh (At-Large).
The alternates were Linda Wunderlich (District 1), Roxanne Mindeman (District 2), James Williams (District 3), Megan Thomas (District 4), Mel Aanerud (District 6), Lillian Ortendahl (District 7), Jim Nardone (District 8), Joel Heller (At-Large), and Ardis Wexler (At-Large).