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.
- Member for
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ST. PAUL -- The two sides in Minnesota's budget conflict agree on one thing: They are in no mood to negotiate away issues they hold dear in the remaining seven days of the 2011 legislative session. Gov.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota's budget negotiators said they will rely on their good relationships to conclude a contentious budget deal that plugs a $5 billion deficit. However, in separate Thursday interviews with the governor and House speaker, as well as a news conference with Senate leaders, no progress was apparent with 11 days remaining before the state Constitution requires legislators to quit work for the year. In fact, there were signs Democratic Gov.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota Republican senators do not want their state to become another Iowa. Two years ago, Supreme Court justices in the state to the south unanimously overturned a law defining marriage as between one man and one woman, much like a law on Minnesota books. Minnesota Republicans took a step toward avoiding an Iowa situation Wednesday by approving 38-27 a proposed state constitutional amendment to not allow gays to marry. A similar bill awaits a House vote. "I have a growing discomfort with a small number of politicians in St. Paul deciding this," Sen.
ST. PAUL -- One of the most significant, and least noticed, jobs of the Minnesota Legislature is drawing up new legislative district lines, and it drew sparks Tuesday night. After about 30 Minnesotans told the House Redistricting Committee their thoughts of a House Republican proposal, Democrats complained that the 24 hours since the plan was released was too little time to consider it. "You had no intent in producing a bipartisan plan," Rep. Paul Marquart, DFL-Dilworth, told committee Chairwoman Sarah Anderson, R-Plymouth.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota officials are on the lookout for revenge terrorist attacks following the American military's killing of Osama bid Laden. "I have instructed Minnesota's Commissioner of Public Safety Ramona Dohman to redouble our vigilance in the next weeks to assure Minnesotans are fully protected from any repercussions from this incident," Gov. Mark Dayton said this morning. There was no indication of any specific American targets in the wake of bin Laden's death, but experts and Minnesota leaders warned they were possible. U.S. Rep.
ST. PAUL -- The most-heard comment around the Minnesota Capitol these days is: "I don't see how we get there." Those words frequently are uttered by legislators, administration officials, lobbyists, reporters and others who frequent the halls of power. The phrase quite simply means that Republicans in control of the Legislature and Democratic Gov.
ST. PAUL -- State Sens. David Tomassoni and Keith Langseth worry that elderly Minnesotans like their mothers may not be allowed to vote if the state requires photo identification before casting ballots. But photo ID sponsor Sen.
ST. PAUL -- Running back Jessey Grove took the football right up the middle during a game with rival Luverne last season, and was hit in the head. The Windom Area High School senior immediately went out of the game, but did not think he was hurt. "I did not think anything was wrong until the trainer used her test and said I had a concussion right on the spot," Grove told a recent Minnesota legislative committee meeting. After that, he felt fine, but sat out the rest of the season.
ST. PAUL -- The biggest Minnesota budget dispute may not be about whether to raise taxes or even how much to spend, but about the fundamental numbers used to build budgets. Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton's administration and Republicans who hold a legislative majority dispute basic numbers.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota's agriculture policymakers say they set a pattern that other state budget negotiators should follow. "I hope we can serve as an example as the ag committee to other committees," Sen. Gary Kubly, DFL-Granite Falls, said Friday after Gov.