Politics is often the parsing of words. "The definition of is," for example is political legend.
The definition of "abandoned" occupies center stage in Minnesota politics today.
The quote of the day came early today, thanks to the Duluth News Tribune's article on the Minnesota House of Representatives candidate whose daughter came forward to say he "abandoned" her years ago.
Leah Simonson, 20, went to the paper to say her birthfather, DFL candidate Erik Simonson, hasn't seen her in 18 years.
"I wanted him to know that he is so against Gauthier for what he did and his actions -- and that's not OK -- but I want him to know that what he did is not OK, either," said Leah Simonson said.
That brings us to the definition of abandonment and Mr. Simonson's response:
"That's not true. I've paid my child support," he told the News Tribune. "To say the word 'abandoned' leads people to believe that I didn't do what I was supposed to do."
"I'm not understanding why this is an issue now that needs to go to the media, but apparently somebody wants some attention, I guess," he also said.
Question: Is it anybody's business?(13 Comments)
Maybe it's because we in Saint Paul were knee deep in the protests at the 2008 Republican National Convention in the city, but protests at the Democratic convention in Charlotte seem to be getting scant attention.
You may have to turn to unconventional and/or non-traditional sources for the information.
Enter Voice of America...
Undocumented residents protested yesterday...
By contrast to Saint Paul in '08, the cops in Charlotte don't seem to be dressed in the "Michelin Man" outfits. And they're using bicycles more...(2 Comments)
The Minnesota Vikings still aren't in the elite neighborhood, but the latest Forbes valuation of NFL football franchises puts them worth $975 million. Up until recently, Forbes listed the value at $796 million.
Why the big increase? It's simple math, according to Forbes:
The Vikings are getting a new $975 million stadium that will be financed with $477 million from the team and NFL, $348 million from the state and $150 million from the city of Minneapolis. The annual operating expenses and capital costs are estimated to be $20.5 million a year, of which the Vikings will cover $13 million and the city $7.5 million. The Vikings will retain all revenues derived from NFL game-day operations of the stadium and parking facilities, and a third-party operator will keep all revenues from ancillary events. The team, currently near the bottom of the NFL in stadium revenue, could generate an additional $40 million a year from the new stadium.
If Zygi Wilf sells the team, that's a big payday. He paid $600 million for the team seven years ago and the team would have increased in value more than 60 percent in that time (By contrast, the Packers have increased in value by only 33 percent).
On the other hand, the economy has taken its toll. Before the economic collapse, the team was valued at $839 million.
Royce White, the 2009 Mr. Minnesota Basketball and former U of M Gopher, is profiled in a new video on ESPN's new Grantland channel on YouTube.
It documents the night of the NBA draft, and White's battle with anxiety disorder.
"It feels like you're dying," White says.
He ended up going 16th in the draft -- to Houston.
It makes you want to root for the kid.(6 Comments)
We have an open invitation to you on NewsCut to tell us about people who are doing neat and inspiring things in your community and by and large, you come through. We could always use more, since we think these stories are more indicative of the human condition than many of the stories that dominate the news.
That's why we were interested today to get an e-mail that the Bus 52 project pulls into Minnesota next week.
Several people -- one of them from Luther Seminary but the rest out-of-staters -- have been traveling the country on a bus, stopping where there's a good story to tell.
Like this one from a few days ago...
and yesterday the team posted this video of an effort in Boise to help get drop-outs back on track...
I'll introduce you to the "bus people" when they're in the state next week. It will be fascinating to see what stories they dig up here and whether they meet some of the people you've suggested.
And, yes, that's a hint.(1 Comments)