See more of the story

GOP candidate for governor Mike Murphy announced Lacy Johnson as his running mate Thursday, as the Minnesota Republican Party gears up for its state convention.

Johnson, a businessman from north Minneapolis, challenged U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar in the 2020 race for the Fifth Congressional District. He said in a video announcement that after much "soul searching" he opted to run as Murphy's lieutenant governor pick.

"Mike has indicated a detailed understanding of the issues within the metropolitan area and the inner city as well as our state of Minnesota," Johnson said. "So I think we are going to be well-positioned to provide solutions to help make people's lives better and to win their votes and to take back the state of Minnesota from the Democrats."

Murphy, who is mayor of the small northern metro suburb of Lexington, is one of many candidates vying for the GOP endorsement as the party's delegates gather on Friday and Saturday. He is the third Republican candidate to chose a running mate, following Scott Jensen's choice of former Viking Matt Birk and Paul Gazelka's pick of former Woodbury Mayor Mary Giuliani Stephens. Others could select their lieutenant governors around the convention.