Deceased Candidates Elected in 2 Minn. Cities

Updated: 11/08/2012 10:15 PM KSTP.com By: Scott Theisen

Voters in two Minnesota communities elected candidates who died before the election Tuesday.

In Rochester, incumbent Dennis Hanson earned 51-percent of the vote Tuesday night to beat Jan Throndson. He was running for re-election as City Council President, but Hanson died from a brain aneurysm last June.

Minnesota law said Hanson's name could not be removed from the ballot, so his family decided to continue his campaign for re-election.

"I think it speaks to how highly he was respected and that people liked his leadership and liked what he did for this city," said Hanson's daughter, Erin Henderson.

Hanson's win means there will be a special election next spring, which will cost about $60,000.

On Thursday we learned voters in Spring Park elected John Ericson, who passed away just days before the election.

Spring Park City Administrator Dan Tolsma says Ericson, who passed away on Saturday, Nov. 3, was elected to the city council in a special election for a two-year seat.

The city is now awaiting instructions from the Secretary of State on how to proceed with filling the vacant council seat.