ST. PAUL -- Dave Thompson, who made his name as a conservative talk show host, says he stands out from other Republican gubernatorial candidates because he can work with Democrats and Republicans alike.

"I don't like to put one set of Minnesotans against another," the state senator said Wednesday as he became the fourth person to join the GOP race to take on Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton next year. "I will be there for that farmer ... that window maker in Warroad ... that shoemaker in Red Wing and ... that single mother in East Grand Forks," he said.

Thompson, like other Republicans, criticized a $2 billion tax increase the Democratic-controlled Legislature and Dayton approved this year. He also called for financial help, perhaps in the form of a tuition tax credit, that would allow parents to put their children in private schools if their local public schools are not adequate.

Thompson, 52, an assistant Senate minority leader, is a former KSTP radio talk show host, a lawyer and state senator since 2011. His district serves parts of Dakota and Goodhue counties.

He joins former House Speaker Kurt Zellers, Jeff Johnson and Scott Honour in seeking the GOP nomination.