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Businessman, Army veteran Kendall Qualls announces run for governor

Qualls made his announcement on Fox & Friends, saying he would not be among those "that lost the America that we have known and loved."

MINNEAPOLIS — Editor's note: The video above first aired on Oct. 26, 2022. 

U.S. Army Veteran and businessman Kendall Qualls is joining a crowded field of Republicans seeking to unseat Democratic Governor Tim Walz in November. 

Qualls, who mounted an unsuccessful campaign for the congressional seat occupied by sitting 3rd District U.S representative Eric Paulsen, made the announcement on Fox & Friends Weekend. 

“I’m running for governor of Minnesota because we are at a crossroads in our country. For over a decade the radical left has morphed the culture of the country where it is not recognizable,” Qualls said in a released statement. "We are not going to be the generation that lost the America that we have known and loved." 

KARE 11 news partner Minnesota Public Radio (MPR) reports that Qualls announced his gubernatorial run after months of touring the state as head of a non-profit called TakeCharge Minnesota. Like a number of his cohorts Qualls appears to be zeroing in on public safety while taking aim at Gov. Walz. 

"Minnesota was ground zero for riots, looting and the defund the police movement and I will end the anti-American agenda pushed by Governor Walz, Ilhan Omar and Keith Ellison letting our kids fall behind in school all the while letting record crime go unchecked," Qualls' statement reads. 

Qualls joins a crowded Republican field of candidates running for the governor's mansion that includes State Senator Michelle Benson, former House Majority Leader Paul Gazelka, former State Senator Dr. Scott Jensen, and physician Neil Shah.

Democrats were quick to respond to Qualls' candidacy. “Kendall Qualls is yet another Donald Trump loyalist who wants to bring Trump’s extreme policies to Minnesota. He’s a failed political hack who’s out-of-touch with Minnesotans — that’s why he lost his congressional race by over ten points," reads a statement by Democratic Governor's Association spokesperson Noam Lee. “Qualls’ entrance into the already crowded GOP primary will do nothing but push the entire field further into the fringe as the MN GOP desperately seeks a viable candidate."

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