Earlier Wednesday, about 25 Democrats called for Minnesota Sen. Al Franken to step down after one more woman accused the Democrat of sexual misconduct, taking the total number of allegations to seven.

If Franken resigns Thursday, state Gov. Mark Dayton is most likely to appoint his close ally and lieutenant governor, Tina Smith, as the new senator, Politico reported Wednesday, citing people “familiar with the Democratic governor’s thinking.”

Born March 4, 1958, in New Mexico, Smith completed her education from Dartmouth College, New Hampshire, with a Masters in business administration. She moved to Minnesota in the 1980s to work at General Mills in marketing. Later she opened her own marketing firm and went on to serve as the vice president of Planned Parenthood in Minnesota, South and North Dakota.

Tina smith Minnesota Lt. Governor Tina Smith at a news conference in Havana, Cuba, June 22, 2017. Photo: Reuters/Alexandre Meneghini

She took a step into politics when served as chief of staff to former Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak from 2006 to 2011, her profile in the Minnesota governor’s website said. She also played an important role in helping rebuild the 35-W Bridge that collapsed in 2007. Smith ensured fast-track funding and rebuilding of the bridge in record time, the website added.

A Democratic operative told Politico, “[Smith] really gets Minnesota, she gets the players, she has great built-up relationships. ... She makes practical sense, and she would be a good bridge builder.”

She joined Dayton’s governor campaign in 2010 as a senior advisor and transition co-chair. In 2011, she was appointed his chief of staff. Smith went on to take office as lieutenant governor in January 2015. The next year, she was named one of America’s Top 25 Most Influential Woman in State Politics by Congressional Quarterly, Inc.

Smith lives in Minnesota with her husband Archie and their two sons.

If Dayton appoints Smith, he would be giving the reigns to someone who apparently has no political ambition, Minnesota-based Star Tribune reported. It was speculated that Smith might run for Dayton’s position once he retires in 2018. Smith announced in March 2017 it won’t be happening.

“I feel very confident in that decision and actually really energized by being able to put all of my focus on the next, basically, two years left in the term and do this job that I really love,” Smith said.

According to the state law, in case of a Senate vacancy, a special election “shall be held at the next November election if the vacancy occurs at least 11 weeks before the regular state primary preceding that election.”

In this scenario, Smith would play the role of a “potential placeholder” who would take over the responsibilities before opening up the seat for November 2018 special elections, Politico reported.

Ryan Winkler, a former Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party legislator, said, “The governor came to rely on her judgment and advice while she was chief of staff,” Star Tribune reported.

Franken’s official Twitter account Wednesday posted: “Senator Franken will be making an announcement tomorrow. More details to come.” After the resignation rumors spread, another tweet was posted from the account.