The Potluck

MyPillow guy delays decision on governor’s race

By: - November 4, 2020 1:37 pm

Photo courtesy of Mike Lindell.

Mike Lindell — better known as “the MyPillow guy” for his commercials and infomercials selling pillows — said he’d make an announcement the day after the election on whether he’ll run for Minnesota governor in 2022.

It’s the day after the election, but the MyPillow CEO still isn’t sure. He said he’s waiting for the presidential election to be decided, and noted there was a disclaimer when he told Minnesota campaign crowds this year that he might run.

“I said I’d run if we won Minnesota; obviously we lost so now I have to weigh that,” he said in a Reformer interview. “I had said I’m only running if we won Minnesota up and down the ticket. But now I’ve gotta debate and I’ve gotta pray about it and see what happens with the presidential election. (They) might need me now more than ever.”

He was in Washington, D.C., where he attended a watch party at the Trump Hotel Tuesday night.

“Everybody and their brother’s been calling me for hope this morning (after) all the corruption that went on in Arizona and Pennsylvania and Wisconsin but I think it’s still gonna be fine,” he said, although there’s no indication of “corruption” in those places.

Lindell was one of the warmup speakers before Trump’s Sept. 30 campaign rally in Duluth, and went off script, saying, “I promise if we flip Minnesota red, I will run for governor.”

A week later, he told the Reformer he’d announce his decision after the election but was “very much leaning that way.”

Lindell has been critical of Democratic-Farmer-Labor Gov. Tim Walz’s restrictions to combat the coronavirus pandemic and repeatedly predicted Minnesota would go Republican in a landslide on Tuesday.

Walz is up for re-election in 2022, but is relatively popular with Minnesotans according to a recent Star Tribune poll.

Lindell has become a darling of Trump-loving Republican Party activists and especially the religious right, which recognizes him from his ubiquitous Fox News ads selling his pillows. Trump has returned the favor by frequently publicly praising Lindell.

Lindell says he was a crack addict before he became a Christian and founded MyPillow, which is based in Chaska and has a manufacturing plant in Shakopee. Last year, after laying off 150 Shakopee workers, Lindell said he needed the space to launch an online store for entrepreneurs and inventors to sell their products.

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Deena Winter
Deena Winter

Deena Winter has covered local and state government in four states over the past three decades, with stints at the Bismarck Tribune in North Dakota, as a correspondent for the Denver Post, city hall reporter in Lincoln, Nebraska, and regional editor for Southwest News in the western Minneapolis suburbs. Before joining the staff of the Reformer in 2021 she was a contributor to the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times. She and her husband have a daughter, son, and very grand child. In her spare time, she likes to play tennis, jog, garden and attempt to check out all the best restaurants in the metro area.