Republicans running for president will participate in a debate tonight in Iowa. It will be the last time the candidates will make their case to a general audience before Saturday's Straw Poll.
MPR says the stakes are high for Tim Pawlenty over the next three days.
Pawlenty worked to knock President Obama and GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann in the same swipe.
Roll Call says Pawlenty's poor showing in national polling could leave him off a debate list in South Carolina.
MPR's Midmorning will discuss the importance of the Straw Poll at 9am.
AP takes a look at Bachmann's role as a foster parent.
Roll Call takes a look at Bachmann's time in the Minnesota Legislature.
The Huffington Post also says Bachmann sought stimulus funds.
Mitt Romney campaigned in Iowa on Wednesday saying voters in that state will see plenty of him.
The Wall St. Journal says Romney boasted of revenue raisers during his pitch to S&P while he was governor of Massachusetts.
Sarah Palin will be in Iowa this weekend.
Under the Dome
The Minnesota DNR will release a study today that will say whether Asian Carp have moved farther up in the Mississippi and St. Croix Rivers.
Gov. Dayton announced plans to expand the day care ratings system.
Dayton says he's more worried about stagnant growth in the state's job climate than the drop in the stock market.
Minnesota saw a revenue drop during the shutdown in July.
Fares at the Minneapolis St. Paul Airport rank higher than others.
The MNGOP cancels a teacher meeting that featured Republicans in the teacher's union, Education Minnesota.
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker will speak in Minnesota in October.
Here's a look at the Super Committee that will tackle deficit reduction.
The Star Tribune says a second Minnesotan, John Faas, died in an attack that killed more than thirty Navy Seals over the weekend in Afghanistan.
President Obama will visit Michigan today to talk jobs and the economy.
The Washington Post takes a look at how poorly the public is backing Congress right now.
DFL Sen. Al Franken spoke with head of American Crystal Sugar about the lockout at the company.
DFL Rep. Betty McCollum blames the Tea Party for the nation's gridlock.
The Dow plunged 520 points on Wednesday.
Race for Congress
Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak is introducing two of the DFL candidates in Minnesota's 8th Congressional District to funders in the Twin Cities.
Speaker John Boehner will be in Minneapolis next week to attend a fundraiser.
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Many political insiders are using phrases like "make or break," as they look at what's at stake for former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty going into tonight's Iowa GOP debate and, more importantly, Saturday's straw poll in Ames.
Pawlenty has spent a lot of time and about $1 million trying to make himself the choice of Iowa Republicans. But his plan to become the alternative to former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney hit a road block when fellow Minnesotan Michele Bachmann got into the 2012 GOP nomination battle in mid-June, quickly eclipsing the candidate who likes to call himself 'T-Paw.'
Tonight's debate will give Pawlenty and the other potential Romney alternatives a chance to knock down both Romney and Bachmann.
Pawlenty is hoping it will wipe the slate clean from the last debate in New Hampshire in June, when he whiffed at a chance to criticize Romney on health care in person, after doing it on Fox News Sunday the day before.
As Bachmann's standing in the field of GOP candidates has grown over the past several weeks, she's become a more careful candidate, avoiding impromptu reporter questions and carefully staging campaign events. Bachmann is likely to play it safe in Ames tonight in hopes of retaining her ground.
While there will be a lot of attention on the debate, barring some major misstep tonight, the big story out of Iowa this week will be the results of the Ames Straw Poll - or the 'Minnesota Primary,' as some are calling it.
Romney's name will be on the ballot, but he won't be in Ames this weekend, and he hasn't been actively campaigning for support in the poll. Pawlenty has, running TV ads and making lots of speeches.
Bachmann, who's been running well ahead of Pawlenty in polls of likely Iowa caucus goers, hasn't spent nearly as much time or money in Iowa as Pawlenty. The Bachmann campaign is hoping her populist, anti-establishment appeal will win her the most support in the straw poll. Both the Pawlenty and Bachmann campaigns have been arranging transportation to help supporters get to Ames, and both are providing live music along with free food and beverages at their hospitality tents.
For Pawlenty failing to come in first or a strong second in the straw poll could mark the end of his campaign. The poll is basically a beauty contest, but if he performs poorly many supporters would likely reconsider whether they think he could win the nomination and stop sending money. Pawlenty calls the idea that he might be forced to exit the race if he fails to deliver in Ames "preposterous."
The stakes are also high for Bachmann. Her strong start has created has high expectations, and if she fails to live up to them, her bubble could begin to deflate.
Soon after she entered the race Bachmann rocketed to second place in national polls of likely GOP primary voters. The latest national polls show Pawlenty at or near the bottom of the pack of GOP candidates. They also show Bachmann losing some of the support she was picking up following the June debate.
Going into tonight's debate the campaign narrative set the expectation that it would be a fight between the two politicians most familiar to Minnesotans. The battle between Tim Pawlenty and Michele Bachmann certainly took up a significant portion of the debate.
In opening the debate Fox News' Bret Baier asked that candidates drop their talking points and talk openly about the problems facing the country.
Bret Baier's request to put aside talking points violated in first answer by Bachmann's "one term president" stump speech applause line
Pawlenty and Bachmann mixed it up.
Pawlenty campaign workers stepped in and helped to articulate his message.
Posted at 9:26 PM on August 11, 2011
by Michael Olson
Filed under: Campaign 2012
"We're going to have to show contrast not similarities," Tim Pawlenty said during the Fox News debate Thursday evening when comparing the health plan Mitt Romney signed into law in Massachusetts to the one President Obama signed in Washington, D.C.
"I think I like Tim's answer in the last debate better," Romney retorted.
A few takes on who won the debate.
New York Times' Nate Silver:
Winners tonight, in rough order: 1. Fox News (great questions), 2. Rick Perry; 3. Ron Paul; 4. Mitt Romney; 5. Barack Obama.
National Journal's Ron Fournier:
Winners: Obama and Perry. Loser: T-Toast
And a Tweet from the Weekly Standard's Stephen Hayes with NBC's Chuck Todd:
And sometimes cliches are true RT: @chucktodd
But the cheap cliche "who won the debate" spin will be "Rick Perry"
Did you watch the debate? Who made the most compelling case for their campaign?(4 Comments)
President Obama will hold a town hall in Cannon Falls on Monday. President Obama will fly into the Minneapolis St. Paul Airport on Monday morning and will travel to Cannon Falls for the morning event. The town hall will be held at Lower Hannah's Bend Park at 11:45 a.m.
The event will be the first stop on Obama's three-day economic bus tour in the Midwest.
"While in the Midwest, the President will discuss ways to grow the economy, strengthen the middle class and accelerate hiring in communities and towns across the nation and hear directly from Americans, including small business owners, local families, private sector leaders, rural organizations, and government officials," The White House said in a statement. "The President knows we must do everything we can to promote economic growth, restore confidence in our nation's future and enhance the sense of optimism for future generations."
The White House says the event is free and open to the public but tickets are required and can be picked up at the Cannon Falls City Hall beginning at 1 p.m. on Sunday.