Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.
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ST. PAUL -- Mark Dayton and Tom Emmer ended their quest for the Minnesota governor's office as differently as they were on the campaign trail. Dayton, the liberal winner, was somber. Emmer, the conservative loser, was lighthearted.
DELANO, Minn. -- Mark Dayton promises to work with Republicans and Democrats alike now that he is Minnesota's governor-elect. "You were elected on your platforms and principles; I was elected on mine," the Democrat said to Republicans who will control the Legislature. "I believe the collective wisdom of the electorate is that they want part of what each of us offers, and they want us to work together to solve the state's budget crisis." Dayton made his remarks in a Capitol news conference less than four hours after Tom Emmer conceded the race.
ST. PAUL -- Tom Emmer apparently is leaving the Minnesota governor's race at his home, an appropriate ending to a campaign in which he discussed his wife and seven children more than any other topic. Numerous reports indicate that what his campaign calls a "major announcement" this morning will be the Delano Republican conceding to Mark Dayton, opening the door for a Democrat to become the first Minnesota governor since Rudy Perpich left office 20 years ago. With Dayton leading the race by 8,720 votes following a statewide hand recount, Emmer already knew he could not win that way.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota's economy is improving, but don't look for it to be back at full strength any time soon. State Economist Tom Stinson predicts that the economy will not rise back to pre-recession levels for at least two more years. There has been good news for agriculture, health care and tourism industries in recent months. Minnesota sales to other countries are also looking up.
ST. PAUL -- A recount that ended Friday night did not deliver Tom Emmer the votes he needs to win Minnesota's governorship, but he is not giving up until he gets a few more answers. Depending on those answers, he could take the election to court. When Hennepin County election officials ended their work Friday night, the five-day recount of all 2.1 million ballots cast on Nov. 2 wrapped up with Democrat Mark Dayton leading by about the same as when it started: roughly 9,000 votes.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota's Republican chairman called reporters to his office a block north of the state Capitol the day after the election to outline what he saw as irregularities in voting, irregularities he said could affect the governor's race. "The race for governor is not over," Sutton declared in an emotional, rising voice. "We are concerned there are so many discrepancies." He wanted all the publicity he could get, complaining about Democratic Secretary of State Mark Ritchie and how the Nov. 2 election was run. Fast forward to the past few days and find a different Tony Sutton.
ST. PAUL -- One of Minnesota's two governor hopefuls is in Washington, D.C. today, meeting with governors and White House officials, while representatives of the other are challenging ballots and thinking about challenging the election in court. Democrat Mark Dayton, holding his statewide recount lead of nearly 9,000 votes, is off to the annual Democratic Governors' Association meeting as he prepares to be governor.
ST. PAUL -- Recount 2010 started quietly Monday, with one exception, as Mark Dayton picked up a mere 24 votes in the Minnesota governor race. Democrat Dayton extended his lead over Republican Tom Emmer to 8,794 votes out of 2.1 million ballots cast. Dayton picked up 20 votes while Emmer lost four as 44.7 percent of Nov.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesotans remember all too well the days, weeks, months of squabbling over ballots two years ago. There were ballots with stray marks, raising in some minds a question about who those voters actually picked in the 2008 U.S. Senate race. In a classic example, the oval next to Norm Coleman's name was fully filled in, but there was a little mark in the oval next to Al Franken's name. The State Canvassing Board decided that vote belonged to Coleman. Then there were the ballots where voters appeared to be making political, or merely humorous, statements.