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Sen. Franken's Resignation Raises The Stakes For Minn. 2018 Elections

Sen. Al Franken announced his resignation Thursday, and that raises the question: Who's going to fill his Senate seat?

Minnesota law dictates the governor can make a temporary appointment to fill the vacancy. Some reports say U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison or Rep. Tim Walz could fill the seat. But other reports say Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton is expected to appoint Lt. Gov. Tina Smith.

SEE MORE: Franken Takes A Shot At Trump, Moore In Resignation Announcement

No matter whom the governor appoints, Franken's seat will be open for the 2018 elections — two years earlier than expected. The other Senate seat for Minnesota will also be on the ballot. And voters in the state will choose a new governor.

Those are some major stakes for Democrats and Republicans. Both groups are expected to fight for all three positions.

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