Posted at 6:57 AM on February 23, 2010
by Tom Scheck
Filed under: Daily Digest
Gov. Pawlenty says he'll veto the $1 billion bonding bill that is on its way to his desk. The House and Senate passed the bill last night. The House didn't have enough votes to override the veto. AP, the Pi Press, the Star Tribune, MPR and Forum Communications have stories.
Here's Pawlenty's letter threatening a veto.
Gov. Pawlenty refuses to sign a letter requesting Congress to pass funding that he's relying on to balance the state's budget. MPR says Pawlenty's constant criticism of the federal stimulus doesn't square up with his budget plans.
Supporters of a lawsuit challenging Pawlenty's unallotment authority are required to file their briefs in court today.
Racino legislation gets introduced today.
The Minnesota House holds a hearing on gay marriage.
President Obama's plan to limit rate hikes may not impact Minnesota.
Provisions put forward by DFL Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken are included in Obama's health care plan.
The Senate test vote on the jobs bill succeeded. It received enough support to bust the filibuster.
Klobuchar also says two Minnesotans had the proper paperwork to adopt children from Haiti but were unable to leave the country with them.
Franken wants all Comcast and NBC content available online.
GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann blogs that ACORN is giving itself a makeover.
Restrictions on credit card companies took effect yesterday. DFL Rep. Jim Oberstar is mentioned.
2010 Race for Governor
Republican Tom Emmer's campaign will make an announcement this afternoon. Emmer is also getting good marks from a group who is pushing to stop illegal immigration.
Emmer also campaigned in Winona on Monday.
I-P candidate Tom Horner appeared on WCCO on Sunday.
2010 Race for Congress
Charlie Cook says he thinks the GOP will retake the House.
2010 Race for the Legislature
DFL Sen. Jim Vickerman isn't running again.
Pawlenty for Prez Watch
WCCO fact-checks Pawlenty's CPAC speech.
Mitt Romney re-emerges for a 2012 run.
Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels is leaving the door open to a potential run.
John Thune won't say if he's running in 2012.
Sarah Palin will appear on Leno.
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee rips CPAC.
The Minnesota Republican Party filed a complaint with the Minnesota Campaign Finance Board against Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak over the use of a DFL voter file. Rybak's mayoral campaign finance reports show that he spent $13,000 on a DFL voter file. The MNGOP believes Rybak used the statewide voter file for a campaign for governor not his mayoral campaign, They argue that the purchase of the database should have triggered paperwork stating Rybak was running for governor.
"We believe Mayor Rybak's mayoral campaign purchase of the VAN represents additional illegal expenditures in pursuit of the governor's office, given that said purchases occurred without the lawful establishment of a gubernatorial campaign committee," the complaint said.
Tina Smith, Rybak's campaign manager, said she's confused by the complaint since Rybak's mayoral campaign and his campaign for governor both paid the $13,000 for the DFL voter database. She said the mayor Rybak's mayoral campaign relied on the database for legitimate purposes like fundraising.
"I'm not going into details of what our campaign strategy is here but I can tell you that we used it for legitimate purposes and when we created the governor's campaign, we repurchased the license to be absolutely positive that we're doing this the right way."
The Campaign Finance Board ruled in November that Rybak should have filed a campaign for governor in May when he commissioned a poll through his mayoral campaign that the board believed should have been paid for by a campaign for governor. The board ordered Rybak to have his campaign for governor reimburse his campaign for mayor the $26,000 for the poll. Those funds count against Rybak's spending limits.
Republican Tom Emmer announced today that he's forming a search committee to help find a running mate for his campaign for governor. He appointed Lt. Gov. Carol Molnau, Reps. Laura Brod & Matt Dean and PureChoice CEO Bryan Reichel to chair the committee. He said there's no timeline for his decision on when he'll decide his running mate.
DFL House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher announced today that the Legislature will pull back the $1 billion bonding bill rather than send it to Gov. Pawlenty for his veto. During a brief news conference, she said they're using a rarely used rule that allows the bill to be sent back to the Senate. Kelliher has requested the revisor and the chief clerk to send the bill to the Minnesota Senate.
Kelliher said the request came from the House and Senate chairs of the House Capital Investment Committee.
"It will allow for a cooling off period for the next 24 to 48 hours," Kelliher said.
Gov. Pawlenty was certain to veto the bill. He scheduled a 3:30 news conference to announce the veto. We'll post his comments when we can.
Gov. Tim Pawlenty today praised DFL legislative leaders for deciding against sending him a $1 billion bonding bill that he warned them he would veto. DFL House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher, who is running for governor, announced today that she's not sending Pawlenty the bill at the request of the Capital Investment Chairs. Pawlenty said it was a wise move but said he's been crystal clear about his concerns about the bill.
During a news conference that was originally scheduled to talk about his veto of the bill, the governor once again went down the list. He wants the $1 billion proposal trimmed down to about $700 million. He wants fewer local projects, and he wants three of his priority projects in the bill, including an expansion of the sex offender treatment facility at Moose Lake, and upgrades at the Oak Park Heights prison and the Minneapolis Veterans Home. Pawlenty said there was no confusion about his position, and DFLers just intentionally ignored his input.
"They bloat up the bill because they want to be political Santa Claus. They don't want to say no to anyone. They break the bank with the number. They don't want to be the bad person, so they assume I'm going to line item it down and do their dirty work for them. And I usually do. But this year it wasn't within close enough in range to do that. If it would have been a little closer and a little tighter or a little closer, maybe I would have done that. But at some point they got to get the work done, and they didn't."
Pawlenty said he'd be willing to support some local projects as long as his priorities are included in the bill.
GOP state Sen. David Hann, who was a candidate for governor until last week, announced today that he's backing Republican Marty Seifert's campaign for governor. He said Seifert is best equipped to win the general election.
"As I said throughout the campaign when I spoke with delegates, we have to make sure that we don't just win an endorsement but win the general election," Hann said. "At this point, I think Rep. Seifert has best opportunity to do that."
Republican state Senators Joe Gimse and Bill Ingebrigtsen also announced that they're backing Seifert. Gimse defeated DFL Senate Majority Leader Dean Johnson in 2006. Ingebrgitsen defeated DFL Sen. Dallas Sams in 2006.
Seifert said all three candidates are "folks who know how to win."
Seifert also said it was "fine" that his top GOP opponent, Tom Emmer, formed a search committee. He said he had his own private search committee to help him select his running mate, Rhonda Sivaraja, but "did it on our own without having a press conference in regard to it."
The spokesman for Gov. Pawlenty's Freedom First PAC says Pawlenty is scheduled to be on CNN's Larry King tonight. King's show page doesn't feature Pawlenty (it says Men's Figure Skating Olympic Champion Evan Lysacek will be on the show) nor does King's blog (which has an incredible story that says the Dalai Lama has no idea who Tiger Woods is!).
Larry King Live airs at 8PM Central.
Gov. Pawlenty responsed today to his decision not sign a letter urging Congress to pass legislation that extends the federal stimulus for Medicaid. Pawlenty was one of eight governors who did not sign a letter from the National Governors Association urging Congress to pass the bill. When asked why he didn't sign it, Pawlenty said he didn't agree with the language praising the stimulus:
"I worked with the NGA staff in Washington D.C. over the weekend over that. With the Medicaid program, it is a federal program, we act as a pass through agent. The enrollment in the MEdicaid program is growing. I do believe that the federal government should pay more for that program. But the way the letter was worded, in the first paragraph in particular, it had kind of glowing or positive comments about the stimulus bill more generally and its jobs impact and because we're trying to get fifty people to agree on the same language, getting that out of there was not agreed upon so I didn't sign the letter." Listen
The first paragraph of the NGA letter said "On behalf of the nation's governor's we write to request your assistance in protecting jobs and speeding economic recovery by extending the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act's (ARRA) enhanced federal match for Medicaid (FMAP) for two additional quarters."
Several Democrats in the Legislature have criticized Pawlenty for ripping the stimulus bill but relying on it to balance the state's budget.
Today is the deadline for the parties challenging Gov. Pawlenty's unallotment authority to file their legal briefs with the Minnesota Supreme Court. Pawlenty is appealing a ruling by a Ramsey County District Court judge that reinstated a nutrition program for low income Minnesotans. The judge said Pawlenty crossed the line regarding the separation of powers when he unilaterally cut $2.7 billion in spending last July.
Here's the brief from Legal Aid in support of the folks on the nutrition program.
Here's the friend of the court brief from House DFLers.
Here's the friend of the court brief from the League of MN Cities.
Here's part of a statement released from Rybak's campaign attorney, David Lillehaug:
"This allegation does not constitute probable cause, or even common sense. The Mayoral Committee had a right under Minnesota law, the Minnesota Constitution, and the First Amendment to the United States Constitution to obtain lists of potential supporters -- whether inside or outside of Minneapolis -- for the purpose of communicating with them for political support and funds," states Lillehaug in the letter. "There is no statute or Board rule, nor could there be one, that committee members may not communicate outside the geographic limits of the elective office at stake."
DFL Senate Majority Leader Larry Pogemiller told me yesterday that the Minnesota Senate will attempt to override Gov. Pawlenty's veto of a bill that extends General Assistance Medical Care for another 16 months on Thursday. His chief of staff just confirmed it to me again today (11am Thursday).
It looks like House DFLers will wait until next week at the earliest on an override attempt, according to DFL House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher:
"I hear the Senate is going to do something on Thursday. We meet on Thursday as well but it's probably unlikely that we would do that on Thursday. Our next meeting date is Monday."
DFLers have a veto proof majority in the Senate so the big question is whether an override will be successful in the Minnesota House. House Democrats are three members short of the votes needed to override a veto.
The House passed the initial bill 125-9 but House Republicans say they'll stick together and uphold Pawlenty's veto