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Legislators in agreement: This session is about fixing the state's deficit

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ST. PAUL -- The smiles and "happy new year" salutations of the 2009 legislative session's opening day soon will turn to serious faces and money talk as lawmakers begin grappling with a $4.85 billion budget deficit.

But legislators say the opening-day hugs will not turn into partisan stare-downs as has happened in the past.

About the only thing on legislators' minds as they began the session Tuesday was the budget deficit, a record-large one.

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