Retired Air Force Major Dave Hughes of Karlstad has officially announced he is a Republican candidate for U.S. House of Representatives in Minnesota’s Seventh District. The seat is currently held by conservative Democrat Collin Peterson, a longtime incumbent from Detroit Lakes.

    This will be Hughes’ third consecutive attempt to unseat Peterson.

    “Congress is failing our nation with irresponsible overspending that saddles the American people with a crushing national debt that threatens the American dream for our children and generations to come. We need more battle-tested veterans and principled leaders to take power back from the federal government and return it to the people," Hughes said in a release from his campaign.

    “Collin Peterson is a prime example of what’s wrong with the DC swamp. Peterson is a career politician who’s been in office for 40 years. He supports more out-of-control spending through wasteful pork-barrel projects, higher taxes, and allowing a pathway to U.S. citizenship for illegal aliens, including murderers, gang members, and drug runners,” Hughes continued. “Recently, Peterson has a track record of voting against President Trump’s policies more than 80% of the time, including repeatedly opposing funding for the southern border wall. Further, he has sponsored and voted for legislation that would kill millions of American jobs and allow child molesters and rapists to use women’s bathrooms and locker rooms. He has voted in lockstep with Representatives Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Rashida Tlaib. It is time western Minnesota be represented by a strong Conservative who will put America first and support President Trump.”

    Despite Peterson being seen as a leader and go-to voice in agriculture, Hughes says that’s not reality.

    “The elephant in the room is that agriculture is in a death spiral, despite Peterson’s 30 years of opportunity to implement sound policy. During Collin’s long tenure, despite his ostensible clout, Minnesota has lost most of its dairies, corn prices have stagnated, family farms have gone under, and everyone in western Minnesota knows a farmer who’s committed suicide. This crisis must be turned around,” Hughes said.