Former Vice-President Walter Mondale is backing Margaret Anderson Kelliher's campaign for governor.
In a fundraising e-mail to supporters, Vice-President Mondale and former Secretary of State Joan Growe wrote that Kelliher can win in every area of the state. The e-mail also touted Kelliher's experience as Speaker of the Minnesota House and her efforts to override Governor Pawlenty's veto of a transportation funding package. Both Mondale and Growe are listed as co-chairs to Kelliher's campaign.
Mondale's backing comes just a week and a half before Democrats meet to endorse a candidate for governor. The list of candidates includes Kelliher, Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak, state Representatives Paul Thissen and Tom Rukavina and state Senator John Marty.
Whoever wins party backing will still have to compete in a party primary. That's because at least three other candidates have said they'll put their names on the August ballot.
Here's the full fundraising e-mail:
As co-chairs of the Margaret for Governor campaign, we want to extend our deepest thanks foryour support. You have been part of this team since the beginning and it is because of your early contribution that Margaret is the leading candidate for the DFL endorsement.
It's not enough to just elect a DFL candidate in November. We need a DFL candidate who is ready to be governor the day after the election. On November 3rd, Minnesota's next governor will have only 12 weeks to prepare the next biennial budget. After balancing three statewide budgets as a member of the House Ways & Means committee and as Speaker of the House, Margaret is the only candidate in the race with the experience to do that successfully.
Like you, we know Margaret is the strongest, most electable candidate in this race. Margaret is the only candidate who has demonstrated the leadership and ability to bring people together to get results. She has brought together DFLers and Republicans, farmers and environmentalists, labor and business. That broad appeal is how she will win the DFL endorsement, the primary, and the general election so we can take back the Governor's office.
Thank you for being such a strong supporter of Margaret's campaign. Your
ongoing investment - $25, $50, $100, $250 or more - will help her continue to lead this race.
We support Margaret because she is the candidate who can unite rural, urban and suburban areas of Minnesota. We need a candidate who can win in every corner of the state. As Speaker of the House, Margaret has proven she knows how to win in tough districts. As leader of the House DFL Caucus in 2006, she led the campaign that made the largest legislative gains for the DFL in decades and took back the House from Republican control. Then two years later, she increased that DFL majority.
The results of Margaret's inclusive style of leadership have been remarkable: a veto override that secured the first new investments in decades for our transportation infrastructure and made our roads and bridges safer, the passage of the Legacy Amendment to preserve our water, our outdoors and our cultural history, and most recently, the passage of a Jobs Bill that will put tens of thousands of Minnesotans back to work.
Margaret is the best candidate to be governor because she recognizes leadership is not about scoring political points - it is about improving people's lives.
Please consider making one more contribution before the DFL state convention begins on April 23rd. Your donation will not only ensure Margaret can run a winning endorsement campaign, but you will help Margaret be well-positioned for an expensive Primary race against selffunding candidates. Can Margaret count on you to contribute $25, $50, $100, $250 or any amount you can afford before April 23rd?
This election will be a defining moment for our state and Margaret is the right person to lead Minnesota at this critical time. But in order to win, she needs you.
Walter F. Mondale
Gubernatorial endorsements lead the Digest today.
With just a week and a half before the DFL State Party convention, Former Vice-President Walter Mondale is backing Democrat Margaret Anderson Kelliher's campaign. AP first reported the story. You can read Mondale's endorsement here.
Meanwhile, former Republican Al Quie backs Marty Seifert's bid for governor. Watch video of the announcement here.
Democrat Paul Thissen released a plan focusing on education.
Democrat Mark Dayton enters the Race to the Top flap. Watch video of his newser here.
Dayton finishes his statewide tour on Friday.
Under the Dome
Several Democrats say they plan on giving the state's teaching rules a new look. The announcement came after a meeting with the governor over the state's Race to the Top application. AP, Forum Communications and the Star Tribune have stories.
A tanning bed tax in the new health law aims to lower health costs.
DFL Sen. Linda Berglin says she wants the Department of Human Services to reverse a measure that penalizes welfare recipients who have miscarriages.
An Education Department report says fewer schools are in financial trouble.
The Natural Resources bill hits a snag.
Lawmakers also look into funding for outdoors projects.
The Vikings owner met with a group of lawmakers to discuss a stadium proposal.
President Obama will meet with members of the Senate to discuss the Supreme Court opening.
Obama will also travel to Poland for the state funerals in that country.
An AP fact-check says Obama skipped the fine print in his nuclear summit speech.
Dana Milbank skewers Obama for limiting press access to the nuclear summit.
First Lady Michelle Obama makes a surprise visit to Haiti.
A watchdog group says Obama's mortgage aid plans wastes billions.
The wrong video of a health care protest creates disagreement over whether the crowd at a protest yelled racist remarks.
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer criticized comments made by a Minnesota radio host at last week's Sarah Palin rally.
DFL Rep. Betty McCollum warned against "anti-government" extremists.
GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann used federal funds for last year's protest of the health care bill.
Race for Congress
Republicans Randy Demmer and Allen Quist are sparring over Demmer's campaign finance reports. The two are vying for the GOP endorsement.
DFL Rep. Collin Peterson raised $118k in the first quarter of 2010.
Pawlenty for Prez Watch
CQ says Pawlenty is quietly beginning his Hill outreach for 2012.
A CNN poll of 2012 Republicans puts Pawlenty at the bottom.
Sarah Palin wants all of her questions prescreened.
Palin's PAC raised $400k in the first 3 months of the year short of Pawlenty and Mitt Romney.
Palin pulls in big money since she announced she was retiring.
Mike Huckabee compares same sex marriage to drug abuse, incest and polygamy.
Mitt Romney says President Obama's weak point is the economy.
Gov. Pawlenty appeared on a Chicago talk radio show this morning where he primarily discussed the new federal health law and its impact on the states. It didn't produce any newsworthy moments, however. You can listen to the interview here.
Pawlenty is scheduled to speak in Chicago on Friday night.
Admirers of state Sen. Julianne Ortman, R-Chanhassen, are encouraging the legislator and attorney to run for attorney general this year.
They've launched a Facebook group called DRAFT SENATOR JULIANNE ORTMAN FOR MINNESOTA ATTORNEY GENERAL. The group's creator is former state senator Carrie Ruud of Breezy Point.
No Republicans have stepped forward to challenge incumbent DFL Attorney General Lori Swanson, who is serving her first term. Ortman recently led an unsuccessful GOP effort to get Swanson to file a lawsuit over the new federal health care reform law.
Ortman was not at the Capitol this afternoon and did not immediately return a phone message.
Gov. Pawlenty is scheduled to give speeches in three different states over the next three days. On Thursday night, he'll give a speech to the Minnesota Young Republicans. He's scheduled to be the keynote speaker to the group's 2010 Annual Convention and Dinner. His spokesman, Brian McClung, will introduce him.
Pawlenty said earlier today that he won't attend the Tax Day Tea Party event at the State Capitol.
On Friday night, Pawlenty will give a speech in Chicago, IL.
On Saturday, he's in Des Moines, IA.
Pawlenty is also scheduled to appear on Iowa's WHO Radio at 10:07AM on Friday.