Dean Barkley

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Dean Malcolm Barkley (born August 31, 1950) is a politician who briefly served as a member of the United States Senate from Minnesota following the death of Paul Wellstone. A founder and chair of the Minnesota Reform Party (the predecessor of the Independence Party of Minnesota), he chaired Jesse Ventura's successful 1998 gubernatorial campaign; Ventura subsequently appointed him director of the state's Office of Strategic and Long Range Planning. Barkley ran as the Independence Party's candidate for the Senate in 2008, coming third to Al Franken and Norm Coleman.[1]


Early life and career

Barkley was born in Annandale, Minnesota, graduating from Annandale High School in 1968.[2] He received his BA from the University of Minnesota in 1972 and JD from the University of Minnesota Law School in 1976[2] During his university years Barkley volunteered for George McGovern's 1972 presidential campaign because of his opposition to the Vietnam War.[3]

After graduating from law school, he practiced law and in 1988 became president of Dayton’s Furniture in Annandale, a position he held until 1991.[2]

Political career

Prior to Jesse Ventura

A founder of the Minnesota Reform Party, Barkley ran for the U.S. House in 1992, a run inspired by Ross Perot's presidential campaign.[3] He was also a candidate for the U.S. Senate in 1994 and 1996.

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