The legislature moved one step closer to selecting new members for the University of Minnesota’s Board of Regents this week. Interviews were held by the Regent Candidate Advisory Council (RCAC), and the top two candidates for each of five Congressional District openings made their case in front of a joint House and Senate Higher Education Committee hearing Tuesday.
During the meeting, the joint committee brought forward new candidates not interviewed by the RCAC for consideration in Congressional Districts 1 and 3. The committee nominated current Regent Patricia Simmons and former legislator Randy Demmer for consideration for the 1st Congressional District seat. In the 3rd District, the committee nominated two new candidates for consideration: former Congressman Bill Luther and attorney Darrin Rosha (who had received the CD3 endorsement). Only candidate Patricia Simmons moved forward in consideration.
The Committee was unable to select a single candidate to forward in both the 1st and 3rd Congressional Districts, and instead forwarded two candidates for consideration. The following regent candidates will be formally considered in the joint legislative convention:
Patricia Simmons (current regent, nominated at the hearing)
The regent candidates will now be considered in a Joint Legislative Convention, where a simple majority is required to select the regent for each Congressional District. These seven candidates will be considered, but only five regents will be selected. However, legislators may nominate any candidate during the convention, leaving the potential for candidates not selected by the Joint Higher Education Committee to be nominated and selected. Any candidate requires a simple majority. The DFL currently holds a 101-100 majority in the joint convention.