Posted at 7:10 AM on September 29, 2010
by Tom Scheck
Filed under: Daily Digest
The new MPR News/Humphrey Institute poll shows Democrat Mark Dayton with an eleven point lead over Republican Tom Emmer. Dayton received support from 38 percent of those polled. Emmer received support from 27. IP candidate Tom Horner received 16 percent support.
You can read more of the details on the poll here.
Forum Communications looks at where the candidates differ on education.
Republican Tom Emmer holds a rallies in Willmar, Morris and Alexandria today.
Democrat Mark Dayton is going up with two new ads today.
The next gubernatorial debate is on Sunday.
There's debate over who backed out of Wednesday's scheduled debate.
An unnamed conservative strategist tells The Hotline that Emmer is more like GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann than Gov. Pawlenty.
Race for Congress
A new ad by DFLer Tarryl Clark rips GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann on Social Security.
Clark isn't the only Democrat raising Social Security as an issue.
The NRCC puts Republican Lee Byberg in it's Young Guns "on the radar" list. Key question: Does it come with money? If not, what's the point besides press coverage since there are five weeks to go.
President Obama tells Democrats in Wisconsin to "buck up."
Race for the Legislature
GOP Sen. Joe Gimse's family business is facing trouble.
Secretary of State Mark Ritchie, Attorney General Lori Swanson and State Auditor Rebecca Otto, all DFLers, will run ads in October.
Under the Dome
Gov. Pawlenty returns to flood damaged areas today.
Child poverty grows in MN.
A federal judge refused to suspend the state's disclosure law. Three groups appealed his initial ruling.
Household income plunged in 2009.
A U.S. Appeals Court rules that federal funding for embryonic stem cell research can continue for now.
The U.S. is said to be looking for a way to sever ties with AIG.
Senate Democrat press the IRS to review political spending by nonprofits.
DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar is urging the EPA to scale back plans to put restrictions on industrial boilers.
GOP Rep. John Kline wants to cut the "Freedom Car" program.
Pawlenty for Prez Watch
South Dakota Sen. John Thune will likely run for president.
A few of Pawlenty's 2012 foes have exclusive contracts with Fox.
An L.A. Times columnist mentions Pawlenty as he bashes the Fox deal.
Ohio's governor mentions Pawlenty on the stump.
Democrat Mark Dayton's campaing spokeswoman Katie Tinucci says Vice-President Joe Biden will hold a campaign rally for Dayton at Macalester College. Tinucci and a spokeswoman at Macalester say they'll release more details on the event soon. Biden will also hold a fundraising luncheon for Dayton on October 5th.
Biden's appearance at Macalaster follows the White House's recent push to get college students motivated to vote in November. Several DFL strategists, including Jeff Blodgett, have suggested Democrats need to motivate voters who turn out during presidential elections but don't vote during the mid-term elections. College students are a key part of that group.
Update: The campaign says the event will be held at the Leonard Center Field House from 9AM-11:30 on the Macalester Campus. More info can be found here.
Posted at 10:59 AM on September 29, 2010
by Tim Pugmire
Filed under: Tim Pawlenty
Gov. Tim Pawlenty has signed on with a firm to arrange his speaking appearances next year after he leaves office.
The company, Leading Authorities, announced today an exclusive deal to represent Pawlenty. The Republican governor is widely viewed as a possible presidential candidate in 2012.
"This is an extraordinary opportunity to hear directly from one of the nation's most respected governors and a leading voice in the Republican Party," said Mark French, president of Leading Authorities, in a news release.
On its web site, Leading Authorities highlights several clients, including retired Gen. Stanley
McChrystal, Rev. Al Sharpton and former Wal-Mart CEO Lee Scott.
Minnesota's next governor will face a major problem when he takes office: the deficit.
For his part, Independent Tom Horner says that, despite projected increases in revenue, the state won't have any extra cash.
"We don't have $2 billion extra," he said during the Sept. 7, 2010, debate in Duluth in response to his opponent Republican Tom Emmer's claim that the state will be working with a revenue surplus next year. "[The state] already spent it."
Horner's claim is on the money.
It's true that the state will have more cash in the next biennium. According to Management and Budget, revenues are projected to increase from nearly $31 billion to about $33 billion - roughly a 7 percent increase.
But revenue only tells one side of the story, as Horner points out.
In the next biennium, spending is slated to increase to $38.7 billion, leaving a gap between revenue and expenditures of roughly $5.8 billion, otherwise known as the deficit. Republican Emmer has outlined a budget plan that cuts real and projected spending growth but hasn't detailed how he would account for a growing demand for state services.
There are two key pots of money being moved around that make these budget contortions even trickier. In this biennium, the state got about $2 billion in federal stimulus funding that helped pay for education and health care. The one-time cash transfer effectively allowed the state to spend more without drawing down general funds in the current fiscal year.
This funding disappears in the next biennium, but is nevertheless included in projected spending for the state. And it's unlikely that lawmakers are going to find an additional $2 billion to fill the hole.
Add to that the $1.4 billion the state is obliged by law to repay schools in the next biennium, and the deficit begins to take shape. (Emmer and Horner have both said they will push back payment to the 2014-2015 biennium.) The rest of the deficit reflects recent cuts made to balance the budget and cost increases associated with a growing, aging population.
Though revenue is going up in the next biennium, Horner says that the state won't really have an extra $2 billion extra to play with. And he's correct: that federal funding disappears in the next budget cycle.
This claim is accurate.
Duluth debate, Sept. 7, 2010
Minnesota Management and Budget, Price of Government, May 2010
Minnesota Management and Budget, General Fund Balance Analysis: End of 2010
Legislative Sessions, accessed Sept. 28, 2010
The Minneapolis Star Tribune, That deficit is a demon, and Emmer doesn't want to face it, by Lori Sturdevant, Aug. 28, 2010
Minnesota 2020, Emmer's Faux Claims on Revenue, Spending Growth, by Jeff Van Wychen, Sept. 15, 2010
Minnesota Public Radio News, Tax increases in Dayton, Horner budget plans; Emmer downplaying deficit, by Tom Scheck, Sept. 1, 2010
Interview, Tom Horner, Sept. 28, 2010
Interview, Bill Marx, Minnesota House of Representatives Chief Financial Analyst, Sept. 29, 2010
Interview, Jay Kiedrowski, Senior Fellow, the Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs, Sept. 28, 2010
Interview, Curt Yoakum, spokesman, Minnesota Management and Budget, Sept. 28, 2010