Posted at 7:08 AM on October 13, 2011
by Catharine Richert
Filed under: Daily Digest
Welcome to the Daily Digest, where the Met Council considers taking 3M to court, we look at some of the state's economic factors, and Congress approves long-stalled trade deals.
The Metropolitan Council is considering taking 3M to court for discharging chemicals into the environment.
The budget deal could drive-up rent.
Twin Cities home prices fell again last month.
Home forclosures throughout the state are down.
The Twin Cities area has the nation's largest unemployment disparity rate between black and white people.
While Minnesota's job growth continues to outpace the nation's during the economic recovery, the state's median income is dropping.
Ely Mayor Roger Skraba, Two Harbors Mayor Randy Bolen and Cloquet Mayor Bruce Ahlgren endorsed Jeff Anderson's bid for Congress.
Gov. Mark Dayton will be attending a National Governors Association Executive Committee meeting this morning. In the afternoon, Dayton will be meeting with deficit "super committee" and with White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley to discuss job creation.
The Vikings Stadium
Vikings owner Zygi Wilf says a 200-page report issued by the Metropolitan Council Wednesday is a road map to the team's new stadium in Arden Hills.
The federal government wants some counties and other voting jurisdictions to provide bilingual ballots.
Congress approved three trade deals. Most of the Minnesota delegation voted in favor of them.
Rep. Michele Bachmann was there to vote for them - her first appearance on the House floor since Aug. 1.
Rep. Keith Ellison is echoing calls from the Occupy Wall Street activists to end corporate greed.
Anti-abortion groups will push for legislation in every state that requires women to and hear the fetal heartbeat before having an abortion - legislation similar to a bill Bachmann recently introduced.
Three hikers held in Iran visited Sens. Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar in Washington, D.C.
Warren Buffett made $62,855,038 last year.
Agricultural committee leaders in Congress are close to a deal on cutting farm subsidies.
On the Campaign Trail
WomenWinning is sponsoring a fundraiser for Tarryl Clark on Oct. 27.
Powerful Republicans are rallying around Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.
Over the summer, President Barack Obama raised $70 million between his re-election campaign and the Democratic party.
Bachmann is headed back to Iowa, where she'll highlight her jobs plan.
She's meeting today with Donald Trump - their third get-together since April.
Two political analysts sized-up the presidential campaign on Midday.
A Wall Street Journal/NBC poll shows Herman Cain in the lead with 27 percent. Mitt Romney has 23 percent and Rick Perry gets 16 percent. Politico writes that this is a big gain for Cain, who had 5 percent support the last time the poll was conducted.
Stats guru Nate Silver tweets, "Another fresh GOP poll -- YouGov/Economist (Oct. 8-11): Cain 33, Romney 18, Perry 10, Gingrich 9, Paul 7."
The New York Times looks at the origins of Cain's tax proposal.
A super PAC wants to feature candidates in ads. According to campaign finance law, they're allowed to run issues ads.
A Wisconsin lawmaker wants to change the way the state awards electoral votes, according to the Associated Press.
To Paul Tosto, who's launched a new blog over here at MPR called the Big Story. The mission is simple: to chase the big story of the day, all day.
Find it here.
The American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees is targeting 8th Congressional District Republican Rep. Chip Cravaack as part of a national ad buy.
We don't know much about the ad so far, but a press release from the group says that the spot will hold "Representative Chip Cravaack accountable for blocking the American Jobs Act, and preventing tens of thousands of teachers, first responders, veterans, and construction workers repairing crumbling bridges, roads and schools from getting back to work."
The U.S. House of Representatives hasn't voted on President Obama's entire jobs bill, but leaders have signaled that they support some aspects of the plan. The bill stalled in the Senate after Democratic leaders failed to secure enough votes to overcome a procedural hurdle that would have allowed the bill to move forward.
Cravaack will be one of nine lawmakers targeted by the six-figure campaign, according to AFSCME, which is Minnesota's largest public employee union.
The group is holding a press conference this morning, so check back for updates to this story.
You can watch the ad here.
It's slated to run in the Duluth market for about a week, and is part of an ad buy that nears $1 million. Similar ads will be running in Florida, Ohio and Nevada, among other states.
The aim of the buy is to put pressure on lawmakers who can go to their leaders and ask them to let the jobs bill get a vote, said Chuck Loveless, AFSCME's legislative director.
Cravaack is a freshman member of the House, but Loveless said his clout with party leadership lies in the fact that they want to see them reelected.
Andrea Bozek, a spokeswoman for the NRCC, sent us comment as well, writing that, "Instead of picking useless political fights Congressman Cravaack is focused on reaching some common ground on removing barriers to job growth."
Rep. Michele Bachmann is due back in Iowa today for a series of appearances between today and Saturday.
Bachmann spokesman Eric Woolson said the areas Bachmann will be visiting are, "very heavily Republican territory and very important in terms of the caucuses." Iowa's first-in-the-nation caucuses are tentatively scheduled for January 3.
Bachmann will be talking about jobs and the economy at each of her six stops over the next few days, Woolson said.
"The focus is going to be on her economic blueprint on how to create American jobs now," said Woolson.
He said Bachmann planned to emphasize different components of her economic plan at each stop. He also said Bachmann would be doing interviews with local reporters during her latest Iowa campaign swing.
Bachmann leaves Iowa on Saturday but will be back in one week for an Iowa faith and Freedom Coalition candidates forum in Ames.(1 Comments)
Democrats are leading their opponents in collecting cash in the two special elections scheduled to be held next Tuesday.
Governor Dayton has called special elections in Senate District 61 (Minneapolis) and Senate District 46 (Brooklyn Park and Brooklyn Center) for Oct. 18.
DFL Rep. Jeff Hayden reports raising $39,534 for the race to replace DFL Sen. Linda Berglin. Berglin resigned her seat in August to take a job with Hennepin County. Republican Bruce Lundeen reports raising $2690. Green Party candidate Farheen Hakeem reports raising $10,969.
In SD, 46, Democrat Chris Eaton reports raising $33,557. Republican Cory Jensen raised $17,801. I-P candidate Tom Reynolds reports raising $2,486. That seat was vacated when DFL Sen. Linda Scheid died in June.
WASHINGTON - A new bill introduced by DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar seeks to speed the Food and Drug Administration approval process for medical devices.
Klobuchar's bill, introduced jointly with fellow Democrat Michael Bennet of Colorado and Republican Richard Burr of North Carolina, comes as the time it takes to approve new devices has climbed 43 percent in the last decade. At the same time, the medical device industry has come under increased scrutiny due to a series of recalls and studies that call into question the safety of some devices.
Among its many components is a provision to change the FDA's conflict of interest rules regarding outside experts who sit on FDA advisory committees. Klobuchar says the agency has had difficulty recruiting experts to serve on those panels because the current rules are burdensome, a key contributor to the slowdown in the approval process. The bill would apply the same conflict of interest standards that exist across the federal government.
"This legislation will help ensure that we have processes that promote safe, pioneering technologies that help save lives and create good jobs in Minnesota," Klobuchar said in a statement.
Similar bipartisan legislation will be introduced Friday in the U.S. House by Minnesota Republican Erik Paulsen, who's been working closely with klobuchar on medical device issues. Paulsen told MPR News that he's optimistic that his bills will be approved by the House sometime next year.
The medical device industry is a significant employer in Minnesota, accounting for nearly 30,000 jobs in the state according to the trade association AdvaMed. The industry also has a significant presence in Colorado, North Carolina, California and Massachusetts.(1 Comments)
Posted at 2:23 PM on October 13, 2011
by Catharine Richert
Filed under: Campaign 2012
Former Minnesota Sen. Norm Coleman is leading a new fundraising operation called the Congressional Leadership Fund.
Its mission? To get candidates "who promote the values of the center right majority" in Congress, according to the group's bare-bones website.
Coleman will serve as chairman of the so-called Super PAC's board of directors.
Politico, which broke the story, writes that Vin Weber, another Minnesota political heavyweight, will be involved in the group as well.
Both Coleman and Weber have lined up behind former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney as advisers to the campaign.
Super PACs are fundraising operations that can raise unlimited amounts of money from corporations, unions and individuals and spend the money, for instance, on ads that favor certain candidates. However, they must disclose their donors and they may not coordinate with the campaign.
Coleman is chairman of the board for the American Action Network, a non-profit that can raise a lot of money as well, but must advocate mostly for issues.
Democrat Tarryl Clark's campaign announced today that her campaign for Congress raised $228,000 in the third quarter. The campaign issued a statement saying Clark also has $235,000 in the bank.
Clark is seeking the DFL endorsement in Minnesota's 8th Congressional District and hopes to challenge GOP Rep. Chip Cravaack in 2012. She announced earlier this year that she was moving from her home in St. Cloud to Duluth so she can challenge Cravaack.
Cravaack and Democrats Rick Nolan and Jeff Anderson have not filed their reports yet. Democrat Daniel Fanning didn't get into the race until last week so he doesn't have to file a campaign finance report until January.
Minnesota's 8th Congressional District includes northeastern Minnesota but there's no guarantee the district will keep the same shape. The 2010 Census requires Gov. Dayton and the GOP-controlled Legislature to redraw the political boundaries. A court appointed panel will take over the map if Dayton and Republicans fail to reach agreement by Feb. 21.(3 Comments)
DFL Rep. Collin Peterson reports raising nearly $70,000 in the 3rd quarter and has $609,000 heading into the 2012 election.
Peterson, who represents Minnesota's 7th Congressional District, filed his campaign finance report this week. He raised the bulk of the money in the 3rd quarter, $57,000, from political action committees.
Minnesota's 7th Congressional District includes western Minnesota. Republican Lee Byberg is running against Peterson. He has not filed his 3rd Quarter campaign finance report yet.
Tom Emmer, the GOP nominee for governor in 2010, is scheduled to emcee an event for Texas Congressman Ron Paul in November. Paul is scheduled to speak at the St. Cloud Civic Center on Nov. 5. A news release from Paul's campaign for president said Emmer and fellow KTLK radio host Bob Davis will emcee the event. Paul is scheduled to give a speech and will participate in what the campaign is saying will be the "celebratory launch" of his Minnesota state operations.
Emmer couldn't be reached to comment on whether his appearance should be considered an endorsement. He's considered a possible candidate for Congress in Minnesota's 6th Congressional District if GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann either wins the GOP nomination for president or decides against making another run for Congress. Bachmann campaigned heavily for Emmer in 2010. He lost his bid for governor to Democrat Mark Dayton.
The shape of Minnesota's 6th Congressional District has yet to be determined. Gov. Dayton and the Legislature are required to come up with a plan to redraw the state's political boundaries. A court appointed panel will draw the lines if the two sides can't reach agreement by Feb. 21.(3 Comments)