Posted at 10:47 AM on December 18, 2006
by Tom Scheck
Filed under: Daily Digest
Al Franken leads the digest today. Well, I guess he and the others thinking about running against GOP Senator Norm Coleman in 2008. The Star Tribune skips 2007 entirely and focuses on the U.S. Senate race in 2008.
The New York Times says Franken will run in their story on Air America.
Newsweek also mentions Franken in their Air America story.
The blogs are also pondering an Al Franken candidacy. Michael Brodkorb, with MDE, is bringing up stories on Franken's alleged drug use.
Minnesota Monitor focuses on the news about Franken.
Someone with Minnesota Network for Progressive Action encourages Dems to not back Al Franken.
The Governor and the Legislature
The Star Tribune has a story saying property taxes are easing up.
AP says state primed for a flu pandemic.
The Downtown Journal profiles DFL Senate Majority Leader Larry Pogemiller.
The Bemidji Pioneer says the Beltrami County Board discussed legislativye priorities with state lawmakers.
USA Today says states are struggling to cover retirees.
First off, DFL Congressman-elect Tim Walz, DFL Congressman-elect Keith Ellison and GOP Congresswoman-elect Michele Bachmann are on MPR's Midday program today at 11.
The Wall Street Journal says DFL Congressman Jim Oberstar indicates his opposition to any airline mergers.
DFL Senator-elect Amy Klobuchar names her chief of staff (he used to work for Patrick Kennedy).
She'll also talk ethics during a conference call with reporters this afternoon.
The Star Tribune also says Congress will take aim at student debt.
GOP Senator Norm Coleman wants South Korea to start buying American beef.
There's an immigration rally scheduled outside of Coleman's St. Paul office this afternoon.
The Modesto Bee mentions DFL Congressman Collin Peterson in a story that says lawmakers are getting ready to direct ag dollars.
It looks like Congress will have some tidying up to do on the financial realm.
See above for Franken related blogs.
Dick Polman's American Debate takes a look at Evan Bayh's decision to drop his run for the presidency.
The Fix surveys the 2008 scene now the Bayh is out.
The Caucus examines the political book list.
And Lloydletta writes about a retraction from City Pages on Governor Pawlenty's election night victory.
Star Tribune takes a look at St. Paul mayor Chris Coleman's first year.
The Star Tribune editorial writer was cleared in the plagiarism probe.
Finally, USA Today says the internet is critical for political fundraising.
Posted at 11:30 AM on December 18, 2006
by Tom Scheck
Here's the release:
Klobuchar Unveils Leadership Team, Announces Key Hires
U.S. Senator-elect Amy Klobuchar today announced that four experienced leaders will join her senior staff in January. Sean Richardson will serve as Klobuchar’s Senate Chief of Staff, Sara Grewing will manage her Minnesota offices as State Director, Sheila Murphy will run her policy department as Legislative Director, and Jake Sullivan will advise her on legislative priorities as Chief Counsel.
“This team has the solid experience in Washington and Minnesota that we need to get things done for our state,” said Klobuchar.
Sean Richardson has ten years of experience on Capitol Hill. He previously served in leadership roles for U.S. Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle from South Dakota and Congressman Patrick Kennedy from Rhode Island.
Sara Grewing, a St. Cloud native, served as Klobuchar’s policy director during the past year and previously worked for the Coalition of Greater Minnesota Cities. She is a graduate of the University of Minnesota and William Mitchell College of Law.
Sheila Murphy has served as Legislative Director for Senators Tom Carper from Delaware, Bob Kerrey from Nebraska and Dick Durbin from Illinois. She also acted as foreign policy advisor to Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle from South Dakota.
Jake Sullivan is a Minnesota native and graduate of Minneapolis Southwest High School. He was a Rhodes Scholar and a law clerk for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer before joining a Minnesota law firm.
Posted at 3:23 PM on December 18, 2006
by Tom Scheck
Here's the release:
HOLSTEN NAMED DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES COMMISSIONER
~ Governor also makes Ludeman permanent commissioner at DHS and Moore permanent commissioner at PCA, accepts resignation of Chief of Staff Gaither ~
St. Paul – Governor Tim Pawlenty today announced a number of personnel moves within his administration.
Governor Pawlenty appointed Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Deputy Commissioner Mark Holsten as DNR Commissioner. Holsten has served as Deputy Commissioner of DNR since January 2003.
Additionally, the Governor permanently appointed acting commissioner of the Department of Human Services Cal Ludeman as DHS Commissioner and acting commissioner of the Pollution Control Agency Brad Moore as PCA Commissioner.
The Governor also announced the resignation of Chief of Staff David Gaither, who is leaving the Governor’s Office to explore other opportunities. “It has been a pleasure to serve the citizens of Minnesota in both the Senate and as Chief of Staff,” Gaither said.
“During this transition period it’s natural to have changes in our team,” Governor Pawlenty said. “Mark Holsten has the experience, talent and know-how to build on the great work that’s been accomplished over the last four years at DNR and to bring additional reform and accountability to the management of our great outdoors. Cal Ludeman and Brad Moore have been exceptional leaders at two very important agencies and will make great commissioners. And we thank David Gaither for his great service to Minnesota and for the many accomplishments he achieved as a State Senator and Chief of Staff.”
Prior to serving as the Deputy Commissioner of DNR, Holsten served in the Minnesota House of Representatives for ten years, including as Chair of the House Environmental & Natural Resources Finance Committee. As Deputy Commissioner, Holsten oversaw all legislative and budgetary functions for the agency and had general administrative oversight of operations. He was also responsible for the Division of Fish and Wildlife and regional offices in Northwestern, Northeastern, Central and Southern Minnesota.
Holsten, 41, was a key leader in the Pawlenty Administration on a number of outdoor and conservation initiatives including improved management of ATV trails to protect the environment, while preserving Minnesotans’ ability to enjoy the outdoors; forest certification of more than 4 million acres of state lands; and enhanced management of 1,380 public wildlife areas with 1.2 million acres of habitat, from prairies and wetlands to forests and swamps, for Minnesota's game and non-game wildlife species.
Holsten received his bachelor’s degree in sociology and history from the University of Minnesota-Duluth and a teaching license from the University of St. Thomas. He lives in Stillwater with his wife, Lisa, and two children.
Cal Ludeman was named by Governor Pawlenty as the commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS). Ludeman has served as acting commissioner of the agency since July 2006. Previously, Ludeman served as commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Employee Relations (DOER).
DHS is the state’s largest department with a biennial budget of $17.8 billion and about 7,000 employees. The department serves more than 1 million Minnesotans each year by providing or administering a broad range of services, including health care, economic assistance, child welfare services, and services for the elderly and people with disabilities.
Ludeman, 55, served in the Minnesota Legislature from 1979 to 1985. Currently, he is an owner/operator, along with his brothers and son, of the SanMarbo Farm Corporation. He lives in Tracy with his wife, Deb.
The Governor also named Brad Moore as commissioner of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (PCA). Moore became acting commissioner of PCA in August 2006. Moore previously served as Assistant Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, where he oversaw seven divisions including Enforcement, Ecological Services, Waters, and Lands and Minerals.
At DNR, Moore worked on the commissioner’s management team to establish strategic direction, develop policy, and manage the department’s $300 million annual budget. He also helped develop and implement recommendations to improve the competitiveness of Minnesota’s primary forest products industry.
Moore worked for the DNR from 1988 until August. Before being named an Assistant Commissioner in 1999, he was a Senior Management Analyst and Field Operations Manager. Moore also served as a Public Utilities Rate Analyst at the Minnesota Department of Public Service, which is now the Department of Commerce.
PCA has a biennial budget of $303 million and employs about 800 people. The agency works with Minnesotans to protect, improve and conserve the state’s air, land, and water resources.
Moore, 45, received his bachelor’s degree in political science from St. Olaf College and his master’s degree in public affairs from the University of Minnesota, Humphrey Institute. He resides in Mahtomedi with his wife, Susan, and two children. He enjoys hunting, fishing, canoeing and gardening.