Skip to main content Skip to office menu Skip to footer
Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

204B.13 VACANCY IN NOMINATION; PARTISAN OFFICE.

Subdivision 1.Partisan office.

(a) A vacancy in nomination for a partisan office must be filled in the manner provided by this section. A vacancy in nomination exists for a partisan office when a major political party candidate who has been nominated in accordance with section 204D.03, subdivision 3, or 204D.10, subdivision 1:

(1) dies;

(2) withdraws by filing an affidavit of withdrawal, as provided in paragraph (b), at least one day prior to the general election with the same official who received the affidavit of candidacy; or

(3) is determined to be ineligible to hold the office the candidate is seeking, pursuant to a court order issued under section 204B.44.

(b) An affidavit of withdrawal filed under paragraph (a), clause (3), must state that the candidate has been diagnosed with a catastrophic illness that will permanently and continuously incapacitate the candidate and prevent the candidate from performing the duties of the office sought, if elected. The affidavit must be accompanied by a certificate verifying the candidate's illness meets the requirements of this paragraph, signed by at least two licensed physicians. The affidavit and certificate may be filed by the candidate or the candidate's legal guardian.

Subd. 2.Partisan office; nomination by party; special election.

(a) Except as provided in subdivision 5, a major political party may fill a vacancy in nomination of that party's candidate as defined in subdivision 1, clause (1), (2), or (3), by filing one nomination certificate with the same official who received the affidavits of candidacy for that office.

A major political party may provide in its governing rules a procedure, including designation of an appropriate committee, to fill a vacancy in nomination for any federal or state partisan office. The nomination certificate shall be prepared under the direction of and executed by the chair and secretary of the political party and filed within the timelines established in this section. When filing the certificate the chair and secretary shall attach an affidavit stating that the newly nominated candidate has been selected under the rules of the party and that the individuals signing the certificate and making the affidavit are the chair and secretary of the party.

(b) In the case of a vacancy in nomination for partisan office that occurs on or before the 79th day before the general election, the major political party must file the nomination certificate no later than 71 days before the general election. The name of the candidate nominated by the party must appear on the general election ballot.

(c) Except as provided in subdivision 5, in the case of a vacancy in nomination for a partisan office that occurs after the 79th day before the general election, the general election ballot shall remain unchanged, but the county and state canvassing boards must not certify the vote totals for that office from the general election, and the office must be filled at a special election held in accordance with this section. Except for the vacancy in nomination, all other candidates whose names appeared on the general election ballot for the office must appear on the special election ballot for the office. New affidavits of candidacy or nominating petitions may not be accepted, and there must not be a primary to fill the vacancy in nomination. The major political party may file a nomination certificate as provided in paragraph (a) no later than seven days after the general election. On the date of the general election, the county auditor or municipal clerk shall post a notice in each precinct affected by a vacancy in nomination under this paragraph, informing voters of the reason for the vacancy in nomination and the procedures for filling the vacancy in nomination and conducting a special election as required by this section. The secretary of state shall prepare and electronically distribute the notice to county auditors in each county affected by a vacancy in nomination.

Subd. 2a.Partisan office; filing period.

A vacancy in nomination for a partisan office due to a withdrawal of a candidate under section 204B.12, subdivision 1, may be filled in the manner provided in sections 204B.06, 204B.09, and 204B.11, except that all documents and fees required by those sections must be filed within five days after the vacancy in nomination occurs. There must be a two-day period for withdrawal of candidates after the last day for filing.

If there is more than one candidate at the end of the withdrawal period to fill the vacancy in nomination, the candidates' names must appear on the primary ballot. Otherwise, the candidate's name must appear on the general election ballot.

Subd. 3.

[Repealed, 1991 c 320 s 16]

Subd. 4.

[Repealed, 2013 c 131 art 5 s 10]

Subd. 5.Candidates for governor and lieutenant governor.

(a) If a vacancy in nomination for a major political party occurs in the race for governor, the political party must nominate the candidates for both governor and lieutenant governor. If a vacancy in nomination for a major political party occurs in the race for lieutenant governor, the candidate for governor shall select the candidate for lieutenant governor.

(b) For a vacancy in nomination for lieutenant governor that occurs on or before the 79th day before the general election, the name of the lieutenant governor candidate must be submitted by the governor candidate to the filing officer no later than 71 days before the general election. If the vacancy in nomination for lieutenant governor occurs after the 79th day before the general election, the candidate for governor shall submit the name of the new lieutenant governor candidate to the secretary of state within seven days after the vacancy in nomination occurs, but no changes may be made to the general election ballots.

(c) When a vacancy in nomination for lieutenant governor occurs after the 79th day before the general election, the county auditor or municipal clerk shall post a notice in each precinct affected by the vacancy in nomination. The secretary of state shall prepare and electronically distribute the notice to county auditors. The county auditor must ensure that each precinct in the county receives the notice prior to the opening of the polls on election day. The notice must include:

(1) a statement that there is a vacancy in nomination for lieutenant governor and the statutory reason for the vacancy in nomination as provided in subdivision 1, paragraph (a), clause (1), (2), or (3);

(2) a statement that the results for the governor and lieutenant governor will be counted and that no special election will be held for that race; and

(3) a list of all candidates in the governor and lieutenant governor's race, listed in order of the base rotation. The listing of candidates shall include the name of the candidate to fill the vacancy in nomination for lieutenant governor. If the name of the candidate has not yet been named, then the list must include the date by which the candidate will be named.

Subd. 6.

[Repealed, 2013 c 131 art 5 s 10]

Subd. 7.Date of special election.

If a special election is required under this section, the governor shall issue a writ calling for a special election to be conducted on the second Tuesday in February of the year following the year the vacancy in nomination occurred. Except where otherwise provided in this section, the writ shall be issued and the special election conducted according to the requirements of sections 204D.22 to 204D.27.

Subd. 8.Absentee voters.

At least 46 days, but no more than 50 days, before a special election conducted under this section, the county auditor shall transmit an absentee ballot for the special election to each applicant for an absentee ballot whose application for an absentee ballot for the preceding general election was recorded under section 203B.04 or 203B.17. New applicants for an absentee ballot may be provided a ballot in the manner specified in chapter 203B.

Subd. 9.Appropriation.

In the case of a statewide special election under this section, the amount necessary is appropriated to the secretary of state to cover costs incurred by the state, county, and municipal governments to conduct the special election.