Posted at 10:05 AM on December 8, 2006
by Tom Scheck
Filed under: Daily Digest
Governor Pawlenty's cabinet shake-up leads the digest. Finance Commissioner Peggy Ingison is leaving to take a job with Minneapolis Public Schools and DNR Commissioner Gene Merriam decided it was time to leave. Revenue Commissioner Dan Salomone says he asked for a demotion. Ingision will be replaced by Pawlenty's deputy chief of staff Tom Hansen. Salomone will be replaced by Ward Einess, acting Commissioner of the Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED). The DNR and DEED positions are open. MPR, the Star Tribune, the AP and the Pi Press have the stories.
One of the Strib's outdoors writers say Merriam's departure is a surprise.
Pawlenty has a 1pm event today.
The Star Tribune says Mike Hatch may stay on as am advisor to Attorney General-elect Lori Swanson. He insists his advice won't consist of "Do this" and "Do that."
MPR continues the transit woes story by saying three major bus rapid transit projects losing money and steam.
The Pi Press picks up the metro transit funding problems.
Forum Communcations has a story saying gas may get cheaper but that steak will cost you a bundle.
What if you held a hearing and no one came?
Some elected legislators (new and old) tell the Winona Chamber of Commerce that there's a big rush to get up to speed.
Both he and Coleman think war in Iraq is bad shape.
This poll says the public agrees
John Kline and Tim Walz back Iraq study report says the Rochester Post Bulletin.
Oberstar is also officially named House Transportation chair says the Duluth News Tribune.
Coleman says he's fine with Ellison swearing on the Qur'an.
Outgoing Congressman Martin Sabo leaves Congress this weekend but goes out swinging. He and others question Homeland Security's risk assessment tags.
Klobuchar says rural issues will be front and center as she visits Willmar.
Klobuchar raised $125,000 from the Human Rights Campaign.
USA Today talks with 94 Republicans about 06 losses. Gutknecht says the GOP ignored their customers.
What, you didn't think the 1968 presidential election still matters? Well, MPR's Tim Pugmire says it matters and produced a fabulous documentary on former MN Senator Eugene McCarthy's presidential run in '68. He and other MPR staffers unearthed a treasure trove of lost tapes from that election. It's worth a listen on MPR News today at noon. Can't listen? Check it out here.
Hotline/National Journal says Pawlenty will play a "major role" on McCain's Presidential team.
The Washington Post's "The Fix" has it's line on the '08 Presidential contenders.
The Star Tribune reports that the cost of the gopher stadium cost is going up.
And finally, the Pi Press reports on a dispute over a student council race in Roseville. The kid who won should have hired a better lobbyist and negotiator. I don't think Jim Baker is busy anymore.
Posted at 11:42 AM on December 8, 2006
by Tom Scheck
Republicans in the Minnesota House have voted to suspend Representative Mark Olson from their caucus just five days before Olson is scheduled to make a court appearance. House Minority Leader Marty Seifert says caucus members voted unanimously on Thursday night to suspend Olson from the caucus. Olson was not present at the meeting. Olson is charged with two counts of misdemeanor domestic assault against his wife. The Republican from Big Lake is scheduled to be arraigned in Sherburne County Court on Tuesday. Seifert says Olson should be removed from the Legislature if he's found guilty.
"It's best that Representative Olson get his personal affairs in order and get through his court situation. And as I said last week that if he knows in his mind that he did this then he ought to be out of the Legislature."
Seifert says he has not spoken with Olson since the incident occurred last month. MPR was unable to contact Olson. He has been ordered to have no contact with his wife.