Posted at 8:42 AM on February 13, 2008
by Tom Scheck
Midday will be broadcasting Gov. Pawlenty's State of the State address this morning live at 11 AM. You can listen to the speech on MPR News and Information stations or at www.mpr.org.
Posted at 9:03 AM on February 13, 2008
by Tom Scheck
Filed under: Daily Digest
Governor Pawlenty delivers his annual state of the state address from St. Cloud this morning at 11 am. You can listen to his speech live on MPR News stations and here.
Several St. Cloud officials hope Pawlenty brings gifts or makes a major announcement for St. Cloud during his speech.
The governor didn't make himself available to talk about the transportation bill put forward by the DFL controlled Legislature. He did, however, tell the 1,500 people at last night's MN Chamber of Commerce Dinner that he would hold the line on spending:
"I don't want to have to do 55 vetoes like I did last year but if it comes to that, so be it. The word is going to go out, starting tomorrow, do not send tax increases to my desk. It will not end in a constructive result or product."
KSTP has a new poll out (via Survey USA) on transportation funding. A majority oppose the gas tax increase and other tax increases. I can't find the results on their website. Send me a link if you find it.
MPR says the Legislature and the governor largely agree on the need for health care changes.
A legislative conference committee oks the legacy act that would raise the state sales tax for outdoors and cultural programs. It's now on its way to the House floor. The Pi Press and Forum Communications have stories.
Minnesota moves to regulate ballast water.
Federal officials say they'll take a second look at the reward for the Zacarias Moussaoui tipsters. GOP Sen. Norm Coleman and DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar are mentioned. AP and the Star Tribune have stories.
U.S. lawmakers are targeting Cayman Islands tax shelters. GOP Sen. Norm Coleman is mentioned.
The Rochester-Post Bulletin says the NRCC's woes fall on GOP Rep. John Kline's platter.
DFL Rep. Betty McCollum intends to skip the steroids hearing in the House.
A top USDA officials says the failure to pass a Farm Bill would be "catastrophic." DFL Rep. Collin Peterson is mentioned.
Reuters says a Farm Bill compromise could toughen subsidy rules. Peterson is mentioned.
The Duluth News Tribune says the full House could vote in a few weeks on a bill regulating ballast water. The paper says Minnesota is taking action as well (see above).
Oberstar also wants to investigate FAA oversight over Southwest Airlines.
Oberstar also writes an op-ed that criticizes the Bush Administration's user fee system for aviation programs.
A Kenosha County executive is indicted for getting improper donations. Oberstar is mentioned.
2008 U.S. Senate race
The DFL candidates debated in International Falls.
CQ details Coleman's fundraising.
2008 Race for Congress
ECM profiles the DFL race in Minnesota's 3rd District.
ECM also profiles GOP candidate Erik Paulsen and I-P candidate David Dillon.
The Pi Press starts a political blog. You can read The Political Animal here. Now be funny and quirky and add some perspective that people can't get anywhere else. And do it in addition to your regular jobs. Have fun!
Posted at 4:31 PM on February 13, 2008
by Tom Scheck
The Political Animal quotes former GOP Sen. Rod Grams saying he may challenge GOP incumbent Norm Coleman:
Grams, who was elected to the U.S. House in 1992 the U.S. Senate in 1996, said today he hasn't yet thrown his hat into the ring.
"I haven't said yes. I haven't said no," said Grams.
Grams waged a brief campaign to challenge former U.S. Rep. Mark Kennedy for the 2006 Republican nomination for Senate. He dropped out of that race and ran for the U.S. House against long-time 8th District Rep. Jim Oberstar. Kennedy was trounced by Democrat Amy Klobuchar in the Senate race and Oberstar skated to his 17th victory in House race.
Grams said today that he's disappointed in Coleman, President George Bush, the seeming inevitable presidential nominating of U.S. Sen. John McCain and Republicans, generally, in Minnesota and Washington, D.C.
Posted at 4:41 PM on February 13, 2008
by Tom Scheck
Well, we're still not sure. MPR had a story this morning with St. Cloud officials speculating as to why Gov. Pawlenty decided to choose St. Cloud for this annual State of the State address. In the end, he may just like the city.
There weren't any grand announcements or any "gifts" to the city. He mentioned the city more during his speech (which you can listen to here than in his prepared remarks. He mentioned St. Cloud 12 times, Central Minnesota once, Granite City once and Stearns County once.
Here's what St. Cloud Times reporter Lawrence Schumacher wrote during his liveblog:
Noon: Final thoughts for now:
State media folks are saying this sounds like a speech from a guy who hopes he's not going to be governor for much longer.
Locals who were expecting some kind of announcement regarding St. Cloud are walking out scratching their heads and asking why he came here.
Republicans looking for a good, partisan fight against the DFL are maybe the happiest people in the room today.