Hibbing Republican wins redrawn Senate District 7

Rob Farnsworth defeated Ben DeNucci, a DFLer from Nashwauk, 53.07%-46.05%.

Rob Farnsworth.jpg
Rob Farnsworth
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Robert Farnsworth, a Republican from Hibbing, defeated Ben DeNucci, a DFLer from Nashwauk, in the Senate District 7 race, according to unofficial results Wednesday.

Farnsworth earned 20,659 votes (53.07%), while DeNucci had 17,926 (46.05%), Minnesota Secretary of State results show.

Farnsworth works as a special education teacher and a real estate agent. He ran for House District 6A in 2020, losing by 30 votes to Julie Sandstede.

ben denucci.jpg
Ben DeNucci

DeNucci is a small business owner and Itasca County commissioner. He formerly served as mayor of Nashwauk. DeNucci ran as a DFL candidate in 2016 for House District 6A, losing to Sandstede in the primary election.

Kim McLaughlin, of Hibbing, ran a write-in campaign as an independent candidate after losing the DFL nomination to DeNucci by 41 votes in the primary election. McLaughlin works as a business manager and certified personal accountant, and serves on the Hibbing School Board and the Range Associations of Municipalities and Schools board. There were 346 total write-in votes tallied in the race.


Senate District 7 previously covered Duluth and was represented by Jen McEwen. Because of redistricting after the 2020 Census, the new legislative boundaries include Iron Range cities in St. Louis, Itasca and Aitkin counties, including Hibbing and Virginia.

Minnesota Senate District 7 map
Minnesota Senate District 7, updated in 2022.
Contributed / Minnesota Legislature

This story was last updated at 8:33 a.m. Nov. 9. It was originally posted at 12:54 a.m. Nov. 9.

Laura Butterbrodt covers health for the Duluth News Tribune. She has a bachelor of arts in journalism from South Dakota State University and has been working as a reporter in Minnesota and South Dakota since 2014.
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