House DFLers release their tax bill today. We know it will include property tax relief.
Probably not a subsidy to Delta/NWA. That's because an NWA official told lawmakers that they won't move the Delta headquarters to Minnesota.
AP says negotiation could resolve NWA's commitments to the state.
Funding for JOBZ could be at risk. The St. Cloud Times says JOBZ is at a crossroads.
Subsidies for Mall of America could also be included. DFL Sen. John Marty rips that idea in this op-ed.
Gov. Pawlenty and DFL legislative leaders continue to play pen pal on the budget. When do they get in a room and negotiate like grown-ups? The Pi Press, the Star Tribune and AP have stories on the latest offer.
One part of final budget negotiations is Central Corridor. The Pi Press says the U of M has been indecisive about the choo-choo line. Some lawmakers say the U is trying to scuttle the bill with the hopes that they can have their preferred route next session.
Get ready for a long floor session in the Minnesota House. Education policy is on tap for today and tonight and possibly tomorrow morning.
The Star Tribune has a profile of MnDOT's new chief.
Governor Pawlenty supports the teen driving curfew legislation.
Forum Communications talks about some key issues that are unresolved.
Gov. Pawlenty vetoed three bills on Friday. They include a transportation policy bill which included a provision that forbid the state from using REAL ID, a resolution urging Congress to end sanctions against Cuba and a bill that allowed local units of government to give grant to non-profits. MPR, the Pi Press, ECM and AP have stories.
GOP Sen. Norm Coleman is pleased an agreement has been reached on the Farm Bill.
The Senate is trying to speed up an FAA overhaul bill. DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar is mentioned.
A petition against the Flight 93 memorial is circulating. GOP Rep. Jim Ramstad is mentioned.
A Tennessee op-ed says a bipartisan panel, which includes Ramstad, is the best way to reduce spending.
GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann defends her no earmarks stance.
DFL Rep. Jim Oberstar was in Pittsburgh urging greater highway spending.
Oberstar is also mentioned in this Newsweek article looking at summer air travel headaches.
The Delta Queen could get docked. Oberstar is mentioned.
2008 Race for President
DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar wants the superdelegate system revamped.
AP has a breakdown of the electoral map. Minnesota is considered quirky and independent.
A high school student is campaigning to be at the national convention.
2008 Race for U.S. Senate
Republicans say Democrat Al Franken still owes back taxes. Two questions for blog readers - Who is vetting Franken and will this slow bleed cripple the campaign? What else will the GOP/Coleman campaign release in the coming months? Does it help Democrat Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer at the DFL endorsing convention? Will another Democrat get in the race? Do voters care about this stuff?
Ok, that was more than two questions.
The Star Tribune has an interesting analysis on the Franken flap.
Franken also made a campaign stop in Zimmerman.
He also says Climate Change needs to be confronted.
The Wall Street Journal says fundraising has been a boost to Democrats.
Franken will hit a fundraiser next week in NYC.
2008 Race for Congress
Pawlenty for VP Watch
Gov. Pawlenty shared an op-ed with Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich.
KELO ponders a McCain/Thune ticket.
McCain also campaigned with Mike Huckabee.
Posted at 9:07 AM on April 28, 2008
by Tom Scheck
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Supreme Court has ruled that states can require voters to produce photo identification without violating their constitutional rights. The decision validates Republican-inspired voter ID laws.
The court vote 6-3 to uphold Indiana's strict photo ID requirement. Democrats and civil rights groups say the law would deter poor, older and minority voters from casting ballots.
Posted at 5:28 PM on April 28, 2008
by Tom Scheck
Republican House Minority Leader Marty Seifert announced that his caucus will start running TV ads ripping Democrats for the gas tax increase.
Seifert initially hoped to run the ads on fuel pump TV monitors at gas stations but officials with Holiday Stores told him they won't allow any political advertising. Seifert said he's hoping Super America agrees to run the ads. He said the tax increase is driving up all sorts of costs.
"This is something that affects every single people in the state because it costs more at the grocery store. It costs you more to go visit Grandma. It costs you more to drive somewhere. It costs your kids more to go to school. It really pinches everybody across the board. Top to bottom."
But DFL House Majority Leader Tony Sertich said Republicans are trying to confuse the issue.
"Minnesotans are concerned about the price of gas but the effect that we have on it is very minimal. It's about supply and demand, world oil prices and like I said, the excessive oil profits. That's what we need to attack if we want to look at this gas issue."
Seifert said the 15 second ads will run on KSTP, WCCO and KARE starting Tuesday night. As of Monday afternoon, WCCO and KSTP reported no ad buys by the House Republican Campaign Committee.
Posted at 5:46 PM on April 28, 2008
by Tom Scheck
GOP Rep. Pat Garofalo of Farmington offered an interesting amendment to the Education Policy Bill that's being debated in the Minnesota House. Garofalo started his amendment with this speech:
"This amendment has to do with prohibiting taxpayer funding of abortions for illegal aliens involved in committed same sex relationships."
That would have been one heck of an amendment but Garofalo was joking. His amendment actually allowed for phased opt out of the federal No Child Left Behind Standards. It was changed dramatically after DFL Rep. Jeremy Kalin of Lindstrom amended Garofalo's amendment. Garofalo was none too happy with Kalin's move "especially because he spelled my name wrong on the amendment," Garofalo said.
Both amendments were adopted.