President Obama would cut the deficit by $4 trillion over the next 12 years.
GOP Rep. John Kline says Obama "has the right idea but the wrong approach."
DFL Rep. Collin Peterson says "everything has to be on the table."
Congress votes today on the budget deal.
A fight over raising the debt ceiling has DFL Sen. Al Franken concerned.
The budget deal hits Minnesota hard.
The PoliGraph says DFL Rep. Keith Ellison's tax claim is right.
U.S. Labor Secretary Hilda Solis touted working training in St. Paul.
The federal government wants airlines to return baggage fees if the airline loses a bag.
Under the Dome
Gov. Dayton will speak at a rally for LGBT equality today.
Dayton held a round table meeting on higher education on Wednesday. He said he'll fight to protect higher education.
Here's a liveblog of the event.
A hearing on Gov. Dayton's tax plan is loud but short. Only three of the 42 people signed in to testify got the chance. Instead, lawmakers took the time to recycle their talking points.
The top executive at St. Peters's Security Hospital has been fired after security and management lapses.
The IRRRB will do a redo the PolyMet loan.
The IRRRB says mining is headed for a boom.
GOP Sen. Dave Thompson, an Assistant Senate Majority Leader, says he opposes the Vikings stadium bill. A caucus spokeswoman says Thompson's position is not a caucus position.
The Star Tribune reports that MNGOP Chair Tony Sutton and his wife worked to broker a deal to promote racinos. Tony and Bridget Sutton deny the claim. Sutton also told the paper he may seek compensation if he's reelected Party Chair this week.
Five firms want to hunt for nickel and copper near the BWCA.
A bill seeks safe harbor for child prostitutes.
A bill at the Capitol would restrict who can help people vote.
Race for U.S. Senate
The National Journal takes a look at the lack of GOP candidates lining up to challenge DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar. Note: Sviggum has told me he will not run for the seat.
Race for President
Tim Pawlenty is in New Hampshire today. He's be in Boston tomorrow.
Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak will join Massachusetts Democrats on a conference call today that is aimed at criticizing Pawlenty.
He says he opposes the budget agreement.
The Hill says that stance doesn't win him any friends with the House GOP.
Pawlenty and GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann teed off on President Obama's deficit reduction speech before it even occurred.
Lens Crafters asks Bachmann to stop using the company name when referring to "Planned Parenthood as the Lens Crafters of abortion."
Rick Santorum formally explores a presidential run.
The Atlantic has a profile of Bob Vander Plaats, who it dubs the Iowa Caucus Kingmaker.(1 Comments)
GOP Rep. Mary Kiffmeyer of Big Lake says Republican lawmakers may put a photo ID requirement to the voters if it's vetoed by Gov. Dayton.
Committees in both the House and Senate have approved bills this week that would require people to present photo identification to vote. It appears to have enough support to reach Gov. Dayton's desk.
Dayton has expressed concern about the bill but hasn't issued a veto threat. He told reporters today that any election bill has to include his campaign finance proposal.
Kiffmeyer told MPR News this week that lawmakers would look to put the issue to the voters if Dayton decides to veto the bill.
"We're going to keep working with Gov. Dayton and continue to do that but if we have to at the end, that is probably a back-up option because this is something that the voters do want," Kiffmeyer said. "So if we need to, we'll take it to the voters."
Supporters of the photo id requirement say polling on the issue shows that it has heavy support with the public.
Critics, like DFL Rep. Ryan Winkler of Golden Valley, say the support would dwindle once they know the provisions could turn people away from the polls. He says seniors, the disabled and women staying at battered women shelters would all have issues with the photo id requirement.
The U.S. House passed the budget deal struck last week by President Barack Obama and congressional leaders. The vote was 260-167, with 59 Republicans voting against.
Two of those Republican no votes came from Minnesotans. Rep Chip Cravaack said the bill didn't cut enough spending.
"When I was elected last November, I told the people of the Eighth District I was serious about addressing our exploding deficits and beginning the process of reining in our massive $14 trillion national debt," Cravaak said. "We need to take dramatic actions to pull us back from the financial cliff we are rapidly approaching."
Rep. Michele Bachmann had earlier said she would oppose the deal because it didn't defund the federal health care.
DFL Rep. Keith Ellison was the other no vote from Minnesota. He has said he opposes any cuts in federal spending that target the middle class. Ellison joined 107 other Democrats in opposing the bill, but Minnesota Democrats Collin Peterson, Betty McCollum and Tim Walz all voted for it, as did Republicans John Kline and Erik Paulsen.
The deal averted a government shutdown and cut $38 billion in spending for the current fiscal year. It's the first of several budget votes to come.
The Senate just passed the bill 81-19 and sent it to the president.
Here's Bachmann's statement:
"The American people gave us a mandate last fall to cut spending, and to fight to repeal ObamaCare and defund Planned Parenthood. This CR fell woefully short in terms of spending cuts, and left the other two key issues as stand-alone amendments. I was pleased to vote for both of those amendments, but they were defeated in the Senate.
"Going forward, House Republicans must fight for deep cuts in spending that will begin to pull us out of the hole that was made vastly deeper by President Obama's runaway deficit spending. We also must take every opportunity to cut off the flow of taxpayer dollars to ObamaCare and to the nation's largest abortion provider."
Posted at 4:42 PM on April 14, 2011
by Tim Pugmire
Filed under: MN Legislature
This week marked the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War. Today marked the first Minnesota enlistments in the Union Army. Josias King is believed to be the first of more than 24,000 Minnesotans to volunteer for service from 1861 to 1866.
Representatives Mike Beard, Carlos Mariani and Dean Urdahl, read a resolution in support of an effort to build a Civil War memorial in St. Paul. Bill Dalin, George Luskey and Andrew Willenbring from the "Boys of '61 Memorial Project" stood in the public gallery above the House floor wearing Civil War uniforms.