In the Know: April 20, 2015

Events today

  • 9:30 a.m. – US Attorney Andy Luger and FBI Special Agent in Charge Richard Thornton will hold a news conference to announce a Terrorism Task Force Operation.
  • 9:30 a.m. – House GOP leaders will release their tax bill. State Office Building Room 181.
  • 10 a.m. – House DFL Leaders will join Minnesotans that are being left behind by the Republican budget plan for a press conference in State Office Building Room 181. House DFL Leader Paul Thissen and deputy leaders will be joined by a teacher from Centennial High School, a server from Willmar, a MinnesotaCare enrollee from Fountain, and other Minnesotans who are being left behind by the Republican budget.
  • 11 a.m. – The Minnesota House of Representatives meets in session.
  • 11 a.m. – The Minnesota Senate meets in session.
  • Noon – The House Tax Committee will begin hearings on the Republicans’ tax bill.
  • 12:30 p.m. – The House Health and Human Services Committee will take public testimony on Omnibus Health and Human Services Finance bill (HF1638). Major reforms proposed in the bill address low medical reimbursement rates and workforce shortages in the health care industry. Provisions vary in the bill from tweaking MNsure’s board and operations to eliminating the program altogether.
  • Lt. Gov. Smith will provide remarks at the American Competitiveness Exchange conference. 

Event Wednesday

  • April 22 – The Lakes Area Progressive Caucus is in the formation stages of a group and input is needed.  Those interested are encouraged to attend a meeting at the Perham Public Library from 2-4 p.m.
  • April 22 – Sen. Franken will host his fifth annual competition to determine which member of the Minnesota Congressional Delegation makes the best hot dish.

Save the date

  • May 2 – State Central Committee meets, 11:30 a.m., Carpenter’s Hall, 70 Olive St., St.Paul.
  • May 16 – First membership meeting of the DFL Environmental Caucus. 1 – 4 p.m., Maplewood Library, 3025 Southlawn Drive, Maplewood.

Events you won’t want to miss!

2015 session

House Ways and Means Committee approved 2 controversial bills, KSTP

House Republicans detail proposed health care cuts, including end of MinnesotaCare, Star Tribune

Testimony expected Monday on HHS finance bill, Session Daily

Don’t forget work for Greater Minnesota, Austin Daily Herald

Minnesota Political Notebook: It is an interesting time in government, Fargo Forum

2016 election

Bush and Rubio: Longtime alliance sours as mentor clashes with protégé in presidential primary, Star Tribune

The latest on 2016 from New Hampshire: Clinton-bashing is popular GOP sport, but not for all, Star Tribune

Huckabee will make presidential decision on May 5, The Hill

DNC planning primary debates for Hillary, The Hill

Author: Only 10 states matter in the presidential campaign, WCCO

GOP honing attacks on Clinton, Star Tribune

Huckabee warns of bloody Republicans primary in 2016, The Hill

New Hampshire could be make-or-break for Jeb Bush, The Washington Post

Republican hopefuls target middle-class insecurity as economy improves, Reuters

The New Hampshire GOP summit: 6 takeaways, Politico



2016 session

House GOP wrestles with costs, politics of finding a home for 2016, WCCO


House GOP adds broadband to budget proposal WCCO

Economic Development Advocates’ View: Rural Minnesota may be used to slow Internet, but is fed up with slow legislators, Duluth News Tribune

Editorial: Follow through on broadband pledge to Minnesota, West Central Tribune

Our View: Don’t kill broadband program, Mankato Free Press

Funding rural broadband, Ely Timberjay

Follow through on broadband pledge, Duluth News Tribune

State cuts would hamper rural access to Internet, Star Tribune

Budget (state)

Republican rush to cut spending could put some in party at risk, MPR

Don’t hold your breath waiting for a check from surplus, Pope County Tribune

Revised HHS budget banks bigger cuts, MPR

Senate bills to fund state agencies, higher ed kickstart legislative budget work, Star Tribune


Bipartisanship breaks out on Capitol Hill with deals on Iran, education, trade; can it last? Star Tribune



Congressional delegation


Sixth District Rep. Tom Emmer’s eyes opened on congressional African trip, Star Tribune


Franken to host 5th Annual Minnesota Congressional Delegation Hotdish Competition

On Wednesday, Sen. Franken (D-Minn.) will host his fifth annual competition to determine which member of the Minnesota Congressional Delegation makes the best hotdish casserole.

He will be joined by the rest of the Minnesota delegation, including Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Reps. Collin Peterson (D-Minn.), Betty McCollum (D-Minn.), John Kline (R-Minn.), Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), Tim Walz (D-Minn.), Rick Nolan (D-Minn.), Erik Paulsen (R-Minn.), and Tom Emmer (R-Minn.).

“For the past five years, the Hotdish Off has been a time for us to put partisanship aside and find out who makes the best hotdish,” said Sen. Franken. “I’m looking forward to seeing what everyone comes up with this year and spending some quality time with the other members of the Minnesota delegation.”

In 2011, Sen. Franken started the friendly competition as a way to bring the delegation together to put partisanship aside and celebrate a Minnesota culinary tradition. Each member will provide a hotdish—traditional Minnesota fare, similar to a casserole—which will be judged based on taste, Minnesota ingredients, and originality.

Rep. Walz’s “Turkey Trot Tater-Tot Hotdish” took the top prize in 2014, and his “Hermann the German Hotdish” took first place in 2013. In 2012, Sen. Franken’s “Mom’s Mahnomin Madness Hotdish” and former Rep. Chip Cravaack’s (R-Minn.) “Minnesota Wild Strata Hotdish” tied for first place. Sen. Klobuchar took top honors in 2011 with her “Taconite Tater-Tot Hotdish.”

After the event, recipes of all of the entries will be posted on Sen. Franken’s website at


Congressman John Kline believes Minnesota’s wealthiest .2% need a tax break, City Pages

After easy re-election, Rep. John Kline hits snags in the more conservative House, Star Tribune


Nolan joins call to reinstate 148th Bomb Squad partnership, WDIO

Nolan leading on jobs and the environment, Duluth News Tribune

National View: Nolan’s commitment to problem-solving not seen since Kennedy, Duluth News Tribune 

DFL Training Summit

Capacity building key focus of DFL training summit, Insight News


Minnesota’s youth exodus spells trouble ahead for labor force, Star Tribune

Education (early)

Dayton: ‘Now is the time to make the push’ for universal preschool, Star Tribune

Preschool funding fight shows teachers union’s political muscle, Star Tribune

Education (K-12)

Minnesota GOP looks to screw schools, mn progressive project

Final education bill is still a big unknown, Pioneer Press



For the entire chart and live links, visit the Pioneer Press chart by clicking here.


Education Minnesota

Preschool funding fight shows teachers union’s political muscle, Star Tribune


Beneath budget dispute, a tussle over regulatory power, WCCO

Faster track for pollution permits gets good reviews, Pioneer Press


Minnesota Lt. Gov. Smith, others kick off trout fishing at Whitewater, Winona Daily News


Letter: Are Republican leaders here when it really counts? Morris Sun Tribune

Policy from House GOP: Are we suddenly in need of austerity? mnpACT!

Norm Coleman’s group: Here, an attack ad; there, a pat on the back, MPR


House approves a series of gun rights bills, WCCO

House votes to legalize silencers, approves other gun bills KSTP


New contract with Allina hospitals sets $15 minimum wage, Workday Minnesota

Tip credit proposal takes center stage at Eggs and Issues, Rochester Post Bulletin

Fast food workers shut down Minneapolis intersection, Workday Minnesota

Airport workers march on Delta subcontractor, Workday Minnesota

Local Government Aid

Return Local Government Aid to 2012 levels, Worthington Daily Globe

Major League Soccer

Why did Minnesota United’s owners even bother asking for a property tax exemption for a new stadium? MinnPost

Council Member Andrew Johnson’s April 16 McGuire email, MinnPost

Minnesota Capitol

Bringing the heart of the craftsman to the stone of the Capitol, MPR


MinnesotaCare: House GOP brings out the budget axe mnpACT!

Revised HHS budget banks bigger cuts, MPR

Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority

Insider squabbles at Vikes’ stadium board spill into public view, MPR 

Public safety

Local ice rinks must spend big to meet new safety standards, WCCO

St. Paul School Board

‘Change’ candidates are big winners with St. Paul DFL, Star Tribune

St. Paul school board: No incumbents endorsed by DFL, Pioneer Press

Senate office building

Senate office building: This space coming soon, with vacancy, Star Tribune


Rep. Greg Davids, House Republicans $2 billion tax cut legislation released, Star Tribune

Statement from House Minority Leader Paul Thissen 

“The Republicans have made a choice that tax breaks for corporations and special interests are more important than educating our kids or investing in Minnesota’s future. Since Republicans have made tax cuts their singular priority, many Minnesotans will be left behind.

“Despite a $2 billion surplus, Republicans are leaving our kids behind. They are providing less than a 1 percent increase in funding for E-12 education. In every corner of the state, and especially in Greater Minnesota, we have heard that shortchanging our schools like this will result in teacher layoffs and larger class sizes.  

“Despite a $2 billion surplus, Republicans are leaving college students behind. They are underfunding higher education, which will force higher tuition and debt for students across the state.

“Despite a $2 billion surplus, Republicans are leaving Greater Minnesota behind. They are underfunding broadband infrastructure, cutting Greater Minnesota job creation initiatives, and shortchanging rural schools.

“Despite a $2 billion surplus, Republicans are choosing to eliminate affordable health care coverage from working Minnesotans, increase the cost of child care, and leave vulnerable children exposed to the risk of abuse.

“Families, students, and children across the state are being left behind so that Republicans can help their corporate special interests get ahead.

“These are the wrong choices for a better future for Minnesota. With a $2 billion surplus and growing economy, we should embrace this chance to create more opportunity for all Minnesotans to get ahead – not just cater to corporate special interests.”



Fund transportation to ensure Minnesota’s future growth, Star Tribune

Feds order oil trains to slow down through cities, MPR

Dayton: Banning money for zip line ‘foolish,’ Rochester Post Bulletin

Minnesota needs a transportation fix, Park Rapids Enterprise

‘Fix It Now, Fix It Right,’ rally urges, AFSCME

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