Garofalo retains seat in Minnesota House
In complete but unofficial results, Republican incumbent Pat Garofalo received 10,945 votes (59.63 percent) in Minnesota House District 58B. Democratic challenger Marla Vagts received 7,391 votes (40.27 percent).
Garofalo maintained a lead in the race throughout the night. With just under half of the precincts reporting, Garofalo led with 3,771 votes while Vagts had 2,318.
Garofalo received strong support in Farmington, receiving 4,779 votes compared to Vagt’s 3,464.
“I am honored to have been re-elected by the voters of our area,” Garofalo said. “I look forward to working with Governor-elect (Tim) Walz as well as both Republican and DFL legislators. 2019 presents us with many opportunities to improve Minnesota government.”
Garofalo and Vagts have been on the ballot since 2014 with Garofalo securing around 64 percent of the vote in the previous two elections. Garofalo has held the seat since first running in 2004.
In the lead up to the election, Garofalo touted his track record of working with both political parties to cut taxes, eliminate wasteful government spending and increase funding for roads and bridges. One of his top priorities if elected is to tackle the opioid epidemic. He is currently the chair of the Job Growth and Energy Affordability Policy and Finance Committee and serves on the Taxes and Ways and Means committees.
Vagts said that health care was her primary focus heading into the election. She wanted to increase access without increasing debt. She said she had 17 years of experience as a contract negotiator that could be used to improve collaboration and compromise in the Minnesota House.
District 58 includes Farmington and Lakeville, as well as cities and townships across southern Dakota County.