St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter, challengers file for mayor


Paul Langenfeld’s grandfather taught him that to be successful, “be best dressed and first in line.” Langenfeld, a self-described community organizer from Highland Park and founder of the Langenfeld Foundation, was indeed first in line on Tuesday to file for the corner office at St. Paul City Hall.

Against a backdrop of riots, recession, pandemic and $166 million in pandemic relief funding from the federal government, he’s running for mayor in November.

So is Dora Jones-Robinson, who is technically still a resident of Roseville. On the affidavit of candidacy she filed Tuesday with Ramsey County Elections, Jones-Robinson said she planned to move to St. Paul by Sept. 28, just barely meeting the requirement that a mayoral candidate live within the city for 30 days prior to the Nov. 2 election.

Election filings opened Tuesday for municipal candidates in St. Paul, St. Anthony, Falcon Heights and five school districts, including the St. Paul Public School board.


In St. Paul, the mayoral race will be determined by ranked-choice voting, meaning there will not be a political primary to whittle down the field. Any candidate who pays $500 and meets minimal criteria, such as age and residency, will appear on the Nov. 2 ballot. Voters will be allowed to rank their preference, first choice through sixth choice.

And there may, in fact, be at least six mayoral choices to choose from. Affidavits of candidacy must be submitted by Aug. 10, but the field had already drawn some colorful contenders by mid-day Tuesday.

St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter arrived at 90 Plato Boulevard West with his wife and 1-year-old daughter, Amila Maelle Carter, to file for re-election shortly after noon on Tuesday. The DFL-endorsed mayor, who handily won a first term four years ago, was joined by St. Paul School Board candidates Uriah Ward and Halla Henderson, who also carry the DFL endorsement.

Beyond Carter, Langenfeld and Jones-Robinson, others who filed for St. Paul mayor on Tuesday include Scott Evans Wergin, who holds degrees in biochemistry and transcendental meditation, and perennial candidate Bill Hosko.

As of Jan. 25, Carter’s campaign had $81,000 in funds available, according to the latest campaign finance report on file with Ramsey County Elections.

All candidates and candidate committees are expected to file a campaign finance report once they reach $100 in donations or expenditures in a calendar year. However, no other candidate committee had filed campaign finance reports as of late Monday afternoon, according to the county’s elections website.


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