Serving Northern St. Louis County, Minnesota

McDonald wins Fourth District

Earns 7,877 votes over Mettler’s tally of 6,310

Marcus White
Posted 11/7/18

REGIONAL - How far do you have to drive in order to win a seat on the St. Louis County Board? About 30,000 miles if you’re Paul McDonald.

McDonald, who won the right to replace the retiring …

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McDonald wins Fourth District

Earns 7,877 votes over Mettler’s tally of 6,310

Posted

REGIONAL - How far do you have to drive in order to win a seat on the St. Louis County Board? About 30,000 miles if you’re Paul McDonald.

McDonald, who won the right to replace the retiring Fourth District Commissioner Tom Rukavina on Tuesday, said meeting with people across the sprawling district was an incredible experience. “I’ve had the chance to meet so many people. After driving 30,000 miles, I realize how much of a passion I have for people.”

McDonald, a longtime basketball coach and educator received 7,877 votes to beat out retired St. Louis County Deputy Sheriff Bernie Mettler, who finished with 6,310 votes.

McDonald ran up big margins of support in his adopted hometown of Ely, where he built a better-than 700-vote margin, as well as in northwestern parts of the district. He also won by narrower margins in the Tower-Soudan area. Mettler found strong support in the Embarrass and Babbitt areas, as well as portions of the Aurora area.

“I want to thank my family for their commitment and support,” McDonald said. “It would have been a very difficult road without them. It goes hand in hand for my campaign committee, especially over the past several weeks. It has been a pleasure for me to canvass the Fourth District. I’ve had the chance to meet so many people.”

McDonald and Mettler were the two winners of the August primary, setting the stage for Tuesday’s vote.

Rukavina had endorsed McDonald ahead of Tuesday’s vote.

McDonald advocated a fairer distribution of funds across the county. “One of the first things we’re going to have to do is setting a budget working towards fairness and equity for the Fourth District,” McDonald said on Wednesday morning. “I’ll be an advocate for each and every one of them (the voters).”

McDonald also talked frequently of HISdesire to see rural hospitals establish specialty units for mental health to take pressure off of care facilities in Hibbing and Duluth.

McDonald will assume his new role in January when he is set to be sworn in.

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