DFL leaders marked the beginning of early voting today with a kickoff event at the Apple Valley DFL field office.
DFL Chair Ken Martin, House Minority Leader Paul Thissen, State Senator Greg Clausen, President of the Human Rights Campaign, Chad Griffin, Second Congressional Candidate Angie Craig and state house and senate candidates spoke to volunteers about the importance of early voting and why it is so critical this year that everyone get out to vote. After the speaking program volunteers headed to their voting locations to vote early.
“The stakes are too high to sit on the sidelines,” said DFL Chairman Ken Martin. “The outcome of this election will determine whether our economy continues to rebound from the Great recession or revert back to the policies that caused it; whether our roads and bridges get the safety updates they need; whether women’s health decisions remain up to each woman and her doctor. This election will determine the makeup of the Supreme Court and whether our nation makes the changes necessary to slow the effects of climate change, and how we continue our relationships with our allies around the world.
Similar events took place at DFL Field Offices across the state including; Minnetonka, Eden Prairie, St. Cloud, Willmar, Morris, Coon Rapids, Plymouth, and Bemidji.
Earlier this week the DFL launched Election Central, a digital voting tool to help make voting easier.
The following article by Briana Bierschbach appeared on the Minnpost website June 16, 2016:
After a 90-minute meeting between Minnesota’s top political leaders in St. Paul on Wednesday, Rep. Paul Thissen had had enough.
In front of a group of reporters, the Democratic House minority leader launched into an attack on Republican Speaker of the House Kurt Daudt, saying the majority party was blocking weeks-long negotiations over a potential special session of the Legislature by not bringing new ideas to the table.
DFL Gov. Mark Dayton already clearly laid out his demands on everything from new spending and bonding proposals to light-rail funding, Thissen said, but Republicans had yet to make any offers in return.
“We had another conversation; it was not productive from my perspective,” Thissen said. “If we are going to have a productive conversation going forward, I think it’s incumbent on the Republicans to come back with an actual, concrete counter offer.”
But things look a lot different when you’re in the majority.
When Sen. Tom Bakk stepped up to the microphone, the DFL Senate majority leader struck a more positive note than Thissen.
“I wouldn’t describe today’s meeting as nonproductive, but less productive than I would have liked to travel down from Lake Vermillion for, but I’m still hopeful,” he said. “I think the speaker’s tone was a little bit better today than it was last week.” Read More
Just more than a week ago, the 2016 Legislative Session came to an end without jobs, transportation or family leave bills. All measures that would have grown the economy and supported the middle class.
While a tax bill was approved, it is unknown if Gov. Dayton will sign it into law. After years of leading the nation in anti-smoking efforts, Republicans slipped a provision into the bill providing a $35 million tax cut for people who buy cigarettes. Republicans also included a provision to end a sales-tax exemption for the Minnesota High School League on tickets and admissions to school events. That money, about $800,000, is used to help low-income students pay sports fees.
Click here to read a letter from House DFL Leader Paul Thissen to Speaker of the House Kurt Daudt about the trouble last hours of the session. Click here to watch the final moments of the House’s debate on the jobs bill.
Gov. Dayton is now considering whether or not to call a special session. In recent days he has indicated before he calls a special session, there needs to be an agreement on funding for Southwest Light Rail; more money for higher education; and reinstatement of the sales-tax emption that is used to help low-income students participate in activities.Read More
Early last week, Gov. Dayton, Senate Majority Leader Bakk and House DFL Leader Thissen called on called on House Republicans to propose a jobs bill that will invest in classrooms, improve water systems and make other critical infrastructure investments in communities across Minnesota.
Not only did the House Republican Caucus fail to put forward a proposal, they consider putting thousands of Minnesotans to work and updating state-run property “dessert,” at the end of the week the Senate GOP Caucus voted down the Senate DFL bill.
There are just two weeks left in the regular legislative session. This is what’s on the line:
39,900 – The estimated number of jobs that would be created by the Governor and Senate’s jobs bills
$3.7 billion – Minnesota communities have made formal requests to the state for $3.7 billion in bonding projects statewide
$3.2 billion – The state’s financial experts, Minnesota Management and Budget (MMB), project that the state has the capacity for a $3.2 billion bonding bill this session
$1.4-$1.5 billion – The Governor and the Senate have proposed bonding bills totaling between $1.4 and $1.5 billion, funding hundreds of critically important projects
Last week, Gov. Dayton and Lt. Gov. Smith sent a letter to Speaker Daudt urging House Republicans to work toward consensus on a comprehensive transportation package that truly addresses Minnesota’s budget shortfalls for highways, roads, bridges, and transit.
House DFL Leader Paul Thissen released the following statement.
“Minnesotans are frustrated by the gridlock in St. Paul. They expect that their leaders will work together and compromise in order to do something we all recognize is necessary – fix our state’s deteriorating transportation system once and for all.
“But the reality is Republicans have shown no real interest in passing a transportation bill this session. Speaker Daudt had admitted the goal of their transportation plan is starve the general fund, taking money away from our schools and hospitals without generating new revenue needed to fund our roads, bridges, and highways. And rather than work to find common ground, they have done nothing but point fingers at Democrats and cast blame. No wonder Minnesotans are frustrated.Read More
The following post by J. Patrick Coolican appeared on the StarTribune’s Hot Dish Politics blog February 4, 2014:
House DFLers proposed a state constitutional amendment Thursday that would make it easier to see who is giving money to efforts aiding candidates, the latest twist in an ongoing feud over the disclosure of campaign contributions.
Current law shields certain groups from having to disclose money they raise and spend as long as it is spent on so-called issue-based advertising that does not expressly say “vote for” or “vote against” a candidate.
The DFL says that’s a loophole and the proposed amendment would close it, requiring the groups to disclose where they receive the money and how they spend it.
A constitutional amendment would need to pass both houses of the Legislature to appear on the ballot and then be approved by the voters in November. Read More
Karen and I would love you to join us for a conversation with Chelsea Clinton at our home this coming Wednesday, February 3, over the lunch hour. We are really excited about this opportunity to talk more about our future together as a country in an informal setting.
(I know it is late notice but that seems to be the nature of campaigns this time of year.)
Statewide investment in broadband: Join Governor Dayton in calling for a $100 million investment in broadband in order to level the playing field for rural Minnesota businesses, families and students to compete in a state, national and international economy.
Pass a comprehensive transportation package: The lack of a comprehensive transportation package was one of the biggest failures last session for greater Minnesota. Communities across the state need a significant and Read More