Posted at 6:55 AM on January 11, 2010
by Tom Scheck
Filed under: Daily Digest
Gov. Pawlenty plans to release his plan of state backed construction projects this week. His spokesman said it would be in the neighborhood of $750 million. The news was released after Pawlenty and legislative leaders met on Friday to discuss the budget problem and the upcoming session. No fixes were found. Democrats in control of the Legislature say they plan to put the bonding bill on the fast track.
Speaking of fast track, the parties involve in the unallotment lawsuit agreed to put the appeal on the fast track. The plaintiffs agreed only after attorneys for the state said they wouldn't withhold payments to the low-income enrolled in a special diet program.
Wisconsin and Minnesota are on track to save $11 million through a shared services program.
Nearly 200 MN Reservists will head to Iraq soon.
The Stillwater Prison went on full lockdown.
2010 Race for Governor
Republican Marty Seifert said on WCCO's Sunday Morning that he'll release his 2009 fundraising numbers this week. He said he raised more than DFL House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher. She announced on Friday that she raised $254,000.
Democrat Mark Dayton will "kick-off" his campaign on January 20th in St. Paul.
The DFL Progressive Caucus backed DFLer John Marty.
GOP Rep. Tom Emmer says he's not a career politician.
The Pi Press said the DFLers will battle through a primary while the GOP could have clear sailing after the convention.
Stu Rothenberg calls the race a toss-up.
Here's where the candidates for governor will campaign this week.
State Auditor Rebecco Otto, a Democrat, will announce her reelection bid today.
President Obama gets a head start promoting the health care overhaul.
The public option appears DOA.
Republicans say Harry Reid should quit because he made questionable comments about President Obama, who he backed for president.
DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar will kick off a statewide jobs tour today in St. Paul.
The Star Tribune surveys the delegation to see who supports body scanners at airports.
DFL Rep. Tim Walz says the health care overhaul bill is an improvement.
DFL Rep. Keith Ellison proposes a public jobs bill.
The St. Cloud Times says GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann is preparing to embark on several speeches.
DFL Rep. Collin Peterson says he's a no on the climate change bill.
Pawlenty for Prez Watch
Pawlenty will raise money for a state senate candidate tonight.
Pawlenty was in Washington D.C. over the weekend for private meetings regarding his federal PAC.
Pawlenty slams President Obama regarding international security.
Texas Monthly suggests Texas Gov. Rick Perry could get into the 2012 race.
Republican Marty Seifert announced today that his campaign for governor raised $222,000 in 2009. He also loaned $20,000 to his campaign and transferred $20,000 from his now defunct MN House campaign. Seifert's campaign said he has $133,000 left in the bank. That's most of the any of the candidates for governor who have divulged those figures.
Here's his release:
Marty Seifert's campaign for governor announced today that it took in over $262,000 in the 2009 reporting period. In just over six months, more than 1,800 individuals contributed to Seifert's campaign. The campaign enters 2010 with approximately $133,000 cash on hand.
"I am very encouraged with the outpouring of support from across Minnesota," Seifert said. "Not only do we have an extremely strong grassroots organization, our finance network extends to every corner of Minnesota. I am confident that ours is the only Republican campaign with the necessary resources to win the GOP endorsement and win in November."
Additional information about Seifert's totals:
Seifert "maxed out" the large donor (over $250 up to the $500 maximum) category of $95,800
Almost $75,000 in contributions was received in the month of December
Seifert did not accept any contributions from registered lobbyists
Seifert transferred approximately $20,000 from his now-closed State House account (included in the $262,000 number)
Seifert loaned the campaign $20,000 (included in the $262,000 number)
"In the early days of the Seifert for Governor campaign, we set a number of aggressive goals," said Jim Knoblach, Seifert for Governor Campaign Chairman. "Not only did we aim to lead the Republican field by a significant margin, it was our hope to finish the year with similar numbers to Governor Pawlenty in 2001. Even though we competed with eight other campaigns in a tough economy, we enter 2010 with more cash-on-hand than the Pawlenty campaign in 2002 and raised a comparable amount. This is a true testament to the strength of the candidate and the organization, which continues to gain momentum."
The candidates for governor started releasing their fundraising figures last week. The reports aren't due until February 1st so it's difficult to get all of the information from the campaigns.
Here's a handy dandy snapshot of what we do know. I ranked them based on total raised from contributors in 2009.
Matt Entenza (Democrat) - raised a total of $300,000 from contributors in 2009. He also made a $10,000 contribution to the campaign and loaned the campaign $70,000. The campaign would not release his cash on hand totals.
Margaret Anderson Kelliher (Democrat) - raised a total of $254,000 from contributors in 2009. She made a direct contribution of $250 to her campaign. She has $81,000 left in the bank.
Paul Thissen (Democrat) - raised a total of $233,000 from contributors in 2009. He also loaned his campaign $20,000. He has $85,000 left in the bank.
Marty Seifert (GOP) - raised a total of $222,000 from contributors in 2009. He also loaned his campaign $20,000 and transferred $20,000 from his now defunct MN House campaign. He has $133,000 left in the bank.
Tom Rukavina (Democrat) - raised a total of $135,000 in 2009. He has $60,000 left in the bank.
Tom Emmer (GOP) - raised a total of roughly $105,000 from contributors in 2009. His spokesman said he loaned the campaign and gave in-kind contributions that amount to roughly $10,000. The campaign didn't release the cash on hand totals.
A new report indicates Minnnesota's economy may have bottomed out.
The report, released by the state's budget office, says Minnesota's tax collections were one and a half million dollars lower than projected in November and December. But the report says the national recession is over, real gross domestic product is growing, the credit markets are loosening and consumer spending is increasing. The report says even dismal job numbers are "giving some tentative signals that a recovery is on the way."
The report said the economic conditions won't be as bad this year as 2009, but warned that economic conditions still aren't expected to return to normal this year. The report projected the nation's unemployment rate will continue to be above 10 percent for the year.
The report does not mean the state's budget problems are solved. Minnesota is running a deficit of $1.2 billion.
The field of candidates in Minnesota's crowded governors race is still growing.
Bob Carney, an unsuccessful candidate for mayor in Minneapolis last fall, announced today that he's now a Republican candidate for governor. He also filed a lawsuit last year challenging Governor Tim Pawlenty's unallotment of a tax refund program for political contributions.
There are now eight GOP candidates in the race. Carney said he'll seek the party endorsement but is also planning to run in the primary.
"I think that the Republican party needs to move in a more moderate and progressive direction, and it needs to be challenged on that," Carney said. "I think I've got some ideas that are going to be appealing to a lot of people including people who have left the Republican party, and people who are independents."
Here's what Carney told reporters today at the Capitol: Listen
In another campaign development, John T. Uldrich of Minneapolis has filed the paperwork to run for governor as an Independence Party candidate. Uldrich was a Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in 2006.
State Auditor Rebecco Otto, a Democrat, announced her reelection bid this morning. She told reporters that she intends to make local government spending more transparent in her second term especially in light of the bad economy:
"I'm going to keep local officials on their toes and educate them on safeguarding public funds, especially when they have less staff, because one government dollar taken is one dollar too many,"
Several Republicans are vying to face Otto in the November election. They are former St. Paul school board member Tom Conlon, Long Lake Mayor Randy Gilbert and auditor's office employee Jeffrey Wiita.
Here's Otto's campaign site. Here video of Otto's announcement:
Republican Pat Anderson's campaign announced that she'll hold a news conference at 10AM tomorrow to make a major announcement. She declined to discuss the specifics in advance but two people with knowledge of her plans say she will drop her campaign for governor and will run for State Auditor. Anderson held that office between 2003 and 2007 but lost her reelection bid to Democrat Rebecca Otto.
Anderson is already making moves to suggest a run for Auditor. She changed her twitter account and created a Facebook page that features her run for State Auditor. There are three other Republicans currently running for State Auditor. They are former St. Paul school board member Tom Conlon, Long Lake Mayor Randy Gilbert and Auditor's office employee Jeffrey Wiita.
Otto announced today that she's running for a second term.
Anderson's campaign for governor struggled to gain traction in a crowded field. She finished a distant third to Marty Seifert and Tom Emmer in an October straw poll of party delegates. Her decision to drop out narrows the GOP field to six candidates but former U.S. Senator Norm Coleman is still considering whether to get into the race.