Democrats Listening To Former Republican Richard Painter As MN US Senate Primary Nears By Bill Sorem | June 27, 2018 LikeTweet EmailPrint More More on Minnesota Subscribe to Minnesota Bill Sorem Richard Painter speaks to voters in Minnetonka. Former Republican Richard Painter is running in the Democratic primary for Minnesota’s US Senate despite losing the endorsement vote to Tina Smith. Smith was appointed to the office when Senator Al Franken resigned earlier this year. Painter is taking his campaign to people who will vote in the DFL (Democratic Farmer Labor) August 14th primary. He met with about 60 voters at Minnetonka City Hall on June 26. The winner of the primary will likely face Republican Karin Housley in the November general election. Support this story and all the stories from The Uptake. Donate.