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“If we have to wait until November of next year, that would kill the deal and the Vikings could be put on the auction block and up for sale,” Lanning said.

Ramsey County Commissioner Rafael Ortega, who backs the stadium proposal, said he’s so certain voters would kill the proposed sales tax that if state lawmakers attach a referendum requirement he would consider yanking the county’s participation altogether.

“It doesn’t make sense to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on a referendum that we know is going to fail,” Ortega said.