ST. PAUL (AP) - Political leaders say the Minnesota Republican Party remains deeply in debt after spending heavily to take control of the Legislature in 2010.

Despite assurances from Chairman Tony Sutton, some Republicans were surprised the party remains in $533,000 in the red. The party's executive board met Thursday night to talk about finances and future plans.

Sutton says his calculated gamble to spend heavily on the 2010 elections paid off politically. Republicans gained control of the Legislature for the first time in a generation and blocked income tax increases proposed by DFL Gov. Mark Dayton.

The party also incurred big expenses from the recount between Dayton and GOP candidate Tom Emmer.

Federal records show the Minnesota DFL Party is about $242,000 in debt.

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