Gov. Under Pressure From Party Leaders

Gov. Under Pressure From Party Leaders Click to Enlarge Photo: Steven Coursolle (KNSI)

(AP) - Two Democrats tell The Associated Press that Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton is coming under pressure from party leaders to appoint more than a placeholder to fill Sen. Al Franken's seat until a special election next year.

Dayton initially planned to name his lieutenant governor, Tina Smith, to the post following Franken's Thursday announcement that he will resign amid accusations of sexual misconduct.

Smith would have served just until a 2018 special election.

But a Democratic official familiar with the discussions told The Associated Press that Democratic Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer has pressured Dayton to name a replacement who will also run for re-election next year to serve the remainder of Franken's term, which runs through 2020.

The official and a separate Democratic operative said Friday that Smith is now considering a possible run herself.

Neither Democrat was authorized to discuss the conditions before Dayton's announcement.

Associated Press writers Kyle Potter and Donna Cassata contributed to this report.

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