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
- 1 year 7 months
ST. PAUL -- Gov. Mark Dayton has expanded a financial aid program to help more low-income Minnesotans to afford to hear their homes.
ST. PAUL -- Many Minnesotans may be perfectly happy to see sex offenders tossed behind bars, with jailers throwing away the keys. However, a federal judge says the system Minnesota uses is so close to the throw-away-the-key philosophy that it violates the U.S. Constitution.
ST. PAUL - The Minnesota Legislature today overwhelmingly approved $168 million in new state aid for communities damaged by summer floods and wind storms. The House voted 125-3 for the measure, with the Senate following 60-7. The entire special session took less than two hours, and an expected House Republican protest regarding the actions of Rep.
ST. PAUL -- Individuals and small businesses recovering from summer storms would share in a disaster recovery bill lawmakers are discussing. The Federal Emergency Management Agency rejected Minnesota's request to help home and business owners, but a proposed nearly $190 million funding package from the Dayton administration includes more than $30 million of individual aid. Republicans a week ago said they had sticker shock over the proposal; they had expected something closer to $27 million.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota's campaign season officially began today. As she has for five elections, Rep. Joyce Peppin, R-Rogers, stayed overnight on her lawn chair in a hallway outside the secretary of state's office to be first in line to file candidate paperwork. Before the office opened at 8 a.m., three others also were in line, the first of many throughout Minnesota to file for federal, state, local and judicial offices by 5 p.m. June 5. Peppin and other candidates said that being early shows voters how deeply they care about their races. Being first is a tradition for Peppin.
ST. PAUL -- The Minnesota House approved a new Vikings stadium late Monday. The 73-58 vote sends it to the Senate, where it could be debated Tuesday or Wednesday. The $975 million proposal funded in part by charitable gambling taxes would be the largest single project the Legislature ever has approved. If the Senate also passes the measure, it likely would be handed to negotiators to work out differences between the two bills and the House and Senate would vote on the stadium again in a few days. "The people of Minnesota, fans, they want us to do something," Rep. Morrie Lanning said.
ST. PAUL -- The federal Justice Department agrees with Sen. Amy Klobuchar that Congress should ban synthetic drugs that pose threats to Americans. The department has announced it backs three bills by the Minnesota Democrat to ban 2C-E, bath salts and synthetic marijuana. Klobuchar, a former prosecutor, has held hearings on the issue in Washington and Minnesota after several communities reported problems with the drugs.
ST. PAUL -- Lee Byberg plans to run against U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson, his second straight time trying to defeat the longtime veteran congressman. Tarryl Clark moved from St. Cloud to Duluth to take on first-term U.S. Rep. Chip Cravaack. Mike Parry is considering challenging U.S. Rep. Tim Walz. So is Steve Drazkowski. Potential candidates for eight U.S. House, 134 state House and 67 state Senate districts are lining up to represent Minnesotans.
ST. PAUL -- U.S. Rep. John Kline says a committee looking into how to deal with the national debt has no choice but to find a solution. The Minnesota Republican told reporters there is no option because without a bipartisan plan from the panel, Washington will see draconian cuts.
ST. PAUL -- It appears none of Minnesota's U.S. House members would compete against each other in a Republican-controlled state House's attempt to redraw congressional lines, which creates a massive district across northern Minnesota. The new 8th Congressional District would stretch from Moorhead to Cloquet, with the line dipping south to cut Mille Lacs Lake in half. It would encompass 23 counties, including Becker, where U.S. Rep.