The Minnesota Chamber of Commerce is urging Gov. Tim Pawlenty to back off his plan to try to keep federal health care dollars out of the state.
Earlier this week, Pawlenty issued an executive order to stop all state agencies from seeking grants and other funds available through the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. In the order, he said the federal law "includes unprecedented intrusions into individual liberty."
Chamber President David Olson sent a letter to the Republican governor this week encouraging him to specifically apply for a $1 million federal planning grant to study a potential health insurance exchange.
"This grant does not require the state to create an exchange," Olson wrote. "Instead, it allows for an independent and comprehensive actuarial analysis of an exchange. The analysis will help us determine whether or not an exchange is a cost effective option for Minnesotans shopping for health care coverage."
Olson also stressed that an exchange could possibly have a significant impact on Minnesota businesses.
The Chamber of Commerce joins several health care groups that also urged Pawlenty to soften his stance on the federal health care money.
Dogged by his opponents' criticism of his own drunken-driving arrests in 1981 and 1991, Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer on Thursday acknowledged that his 20-year-old son Tripp was cited for underage drinking in July.
The alternative Twin Cities newspaper City Pages today posted photos on its website showing Emmer's 20-year-old son Tripp holding beer bottles at a party.
State court records show that in July Tripp Emmer pleaded guilty to an underage drinking petty misdemeanor citation. He paid a $100 fine and $85 in fees.
City Pages doesn't reveal the source of the Facebook photos it said were taken when Tripp Emmer was 19. The paper said the photos have since been removed from Facebook.
Tom Emmer's opponents have already made an issue of his DWI arrests. Emmer has not addressed the arrests in detail, but in a video on his website last spring, he said he had made mistakes and that God had given him a wakeup call.
Tripp Emmer appears in his father's first TV campaign ad.
One of the photos shows Tripp Emmer giving a thumbs-up sign over an apparently unconscious woman whose arms and face have obscene cartoons drawn on them.
This isn't the first time a candidate's family members have been drawn into a campaign.
In 2008, at the GOP National Convention in St. Paul the pregnancy of vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin's then 17-year-old daughter Bristol became national news. In the 2000 campaign former GOP Sen. Rod Grams had to respond to the arrest of his son Morgan on a variety of felony charges.
In a statement released late this morning, Emmer did not address the photos but acknowledged his son's citation for underage drinking.
"My son made a serious mistake and has paid the consequences," the statement said. "It was a mistake which many Minnesota families are all too familiar with. Like all the other challenges in life, our family is dealing with our son in this matter with humility, seriousness, and love."
Posted at 2:10 PM on September 2, 2010
by Annie Baxter
Filed under: Campaign 2010: U.S. House
DFL State Senator Tarryl Clark's Congressional campaign has brought back "Jim the Actual Voter" in an online ad. Actually, it's three Jims.
Clark's opponent in the sixth district Congressional race, GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann, has put out two TV ads so far featuring "Jim the Election Guy," whom Clark's campaign is parodying.
The Jims in the ad make the argument that Bachmann "has no record of accomplishment to run on."
Clark will be appearing at the State Fair at 2:30, joined by one of the Jims in her video. They'll be at the DFL Booth at 2:30.
Clark's camp is also fundraising around the Jim issue. They sent an email today saying the following:
Just a week after releasing her first ad - a misleading attack on Tarryl Clark - Michele Bachmann is back on the air and back on the attack. This time, Bachmann and an actor calling himself 'Jim' use the occasion of the Minnesota State Fair to attack Tarryl, saying she raised sales taxes on Fair foods like corn dogs and deep fried bacon.
The problem with that logic? It was the people of Minnesota who voted to increase the sales tax - in order to fund land conservation and clean water.
Bachmann's camp is also making pleas for cash. An email today seeks $60 contributions. Bachmann refers to herself as Democrats' "top Congressional target."