Minnesota Citizens in Defense of Marriage is one of the many socially conservative groups that have set their sights on unseating Johnson by supporting Cruze as a primary challenger. In a mailing posted by the Marriage group, they even go as far as to ask their Republican supporters to cross over for the primary:
Your party affiliation does not matter! You receive a ballot with all candidates from all parties (you just can't vote for candidates from more than one party on your ballot). Because voter turnout is typically low in a primary, you can make a real difference by simply showing-up and casting your vote. Please, for the sake of our kids, vote for Michael Cruze on September 12th.
In Willmar itself, a few anti-Johnson signs are up. Nearby one is a sign not for DFL challenger Cruze, or even the Republican endorsed challenger Joe Gisme, but instead 13B Republican candidate Bonnie Wilhelm.
In fact, one DFLer in Willmar reports that the signage for Cruze himself is noticeably lacking, with only one small placard spotted in the window of a local restaurant.
The Johnson supporter notes that "the talk in coffee houses and cafes has tended to shift toward the unfairness of the attacks on Johnson."
Will the Republican cross-over strategy work to unseat Johnson, or will the the backlash from outside advocacy groups help keep Johnson safe through the primary? We will know tomorrow night.