St. Thomas-affiliated individuals fall at midterm election

Three St. Thomas-affiliated individuals ran for office in the midterm election Tuesday, although none won their respective races.

School of Law professor Teresa Collett
School of Law professor Teresa Collett ran as a Republican congressional candidate in the 4th District and lost to Democrat Betty McCollum. (Photo courtesy, School of Law)

St. Thomas professor Teresa Collett ran as a Republican congressional candidate in the 4th District, which includes all of Ramsey County and small parts of Dakota and Ramsey counties. She lost to Democrat Betty McCollum, who has held the representative position since 2000.

McCollum received 59 percent of the vote, while Collett received 35 percent.

“It’s disappointing,” Collett said about her loss. “But it’s been a remarkable experience talking with people through Ramsey County and the 4th District. I appreciate more deeply the fact that people are concerned about our community.”

She said her job at St. Thomas helped prepare her to run for election.

“St. Thomas is a strong member of the St. Paul community and it provides you the opportunity as a candidate to get to know lots of different aspects of the community,” she said. “Talking with students from all over the state and country gives you perspective on what concerns are out there.”

Independence Party gubernatorial candidate Tom Horner graduated from St. Thomas. He received 12 percent of the vote in the race, compared to Dayton and Emmer, who each received roughly 44 percent of the vote.

Because less than half of one percent separates Emmer and Dayton, there will most likely be a recount to determine which candidate will be Minnesota’s new governor. Horner conceded and said he is ready to offer his support to the candidate who wins. He could not be reached for comment.

A St. Thomas student also ran for a seat in the Minnesota House of Representatives Tuesday. Junior Zach Freitag ran as the Republican candidate in District 64A against Democratic candidate Erin Murphy. Freitag received 21 percent of the vote and Murphy received 79 percent. Freitag could not be reached for comment.

Katie Broadwell can be reached at

2 Replies to “St. Thomas-affiliated individuals fall at midterm election”

  1. After working non-stop for Teresa Collett in her campaign for the 4th District Congressional seat and my experience with many other campaigns, I can testify that Teresa worked the hardest than any other candidate I have ever witnessed, and if she had run in any other district than the heavily Democratic, strongly unionized and government monopolized St. Paul 4th District, she would have won hands down. She is without doubt the strongest pro-life, pro-family candidate the District has ever seen and it is truly a shame that she is not our representative. Having witnessed Teresa in comparison with Betty McCallum was like black and white. St. Thomas is most fortunate to have such a well qualified professor on it’s staff.

  2. The article surprisingly fails to mention Jim Oberstar (DFL), also a St. Thomas alum, who was narrowly defeated this election after serving 18 terms and 35 years as the U.S. Representative for Minnesota’s 8th Congressional District. Congressman Oberstar’s presence and influence in Congress were great assets to the State of Minnesota and he will be sorely missed.

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