Governor Dayton and the Republican controlled Legislature are still working on the specifics of a budget deal they reached earlier this week. Dayton and GOP leaders are working with committee chairs and commissioners to hash out the details of nine different budget bills. The two sides reached agreement on a budget framework earlier this week; now they have to turn that into legislation. They already missed a self-imposed Friday night deadline to complete their work.
Committee chairs have been tight lipped about the details. The meetings are being held in private and the public is locked out of the Capitol. At stake is billions of dollars of spending for schools, health care and aid to cities and counties.
GOP Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch says lawmakers are making good progress on the bills. She said the details will be made available once the legislation is drafted into bill form. But Koch said the specifics shouldn't surprise anyone.
"We're not allowing new things into the discussion," Koch said. "We use the analogy that we're baking a cake. All of the ingredients have been on the table and been discussed for months. A lot of them have been taking bills that have been posted and vetted and we're working them into these bills."
The governor says he will call a special session once he's had a chance to read the bills and ensure they follow the agreement he reached on Thursday with GOP leaders. The government shutdown will end when Dayton signs the bills.(1 Comments)
From MPR's Rupa Shenoy:
No, it's not a case of yet another Minnesota politician running for president. But GOP Rep. Chip Cravaack's wife and children are moving to New Hampshire, and Cravaack plans to visit them there at least once a week.
Cravaack tells the Duluth News Tribune his wife Traci's job requires her to be in the Boston area three days a week, and the New Hampshire location will make it easier for him to spend time with their children.
"My wife and I said, 'Just because I'm in Congress, I'm still a father.' And being a father comes first," he said. "I have to take care of my children the best way possible, and still be able to serve the country at the same time."
Cravaack says he plans to sell his family's home in Lindstrom and move to North Branch.
Cravaack campaign advisor Ben Golnik said Cravaack will continue to spend about as much time in the state as he does now.
"Sunday has always been his family day, so just using now as an example, I think today he was in two parades up in northern Minnesota, so he'll do his parades, and most likely Saturday evening he'd go to New Hampshire, spend time with his family, and then go to Washington, DC if there were votes," he said. "On district work weeks he would spend his time as he does now, in Minnesota doing constituent meetings, town hall meetings."
Cravaack told the newspaper that he's being pressured by attack ads to begin running for re-election sooner than he had expected.
As someone who ran accusing Democrat Jim Oberstar of being out of touch with the 8th District, it's probably fair to assume the Democrats who want to run against him in 2012 may have a few things to say about the New Hampshire homestead.(8 Comments)