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.
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ST. PAUL -- Minnesota grew by 384,446 people in the past decade, but 15,000 is a more important number. Minnesota beat North Carolina by 15,000 people to keep its eight U.S. House seats. Had 15,000 fewer Minnesotans filled out their census forms last spring, the state would be faced with figuring out how to draw congressional district lines for just seven Ho-use seats. District li-nes still will be redrawn in the next year to fulfill the one person, one vote federal requirement.
ST. PAUL -- A U.S. Senate staff member and former National Farmers' Union president will be the next Minnesota agriculture commissioner. Dave Frederickson was Gov.-elect Mark Dayton's pick Tuesday, ending Gene Hugoson's tenure of serving three governors. Dayton has "a deep understanding and commitment to agricultural issues," Frederickson said. "He has outstanding qualifications: a farmer, former state legislator, president of both the Minnesota and the National Farmers' Unions," Dayton said about his commissioner selection.
ST. PAUL -- Gov. Tim Pawlenty wants federal aid for farmers in four Minnesota counties after a rough weather year. In a letter to U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Pawlenty on Monday sought a disaster declaration for Chippewa, Renville, Wright and Freeborn counties. "A secretarial declaration will allow affected farmers access to the U.S.
ST. PAUL -- Gov. Tim Pawlenty wants federal aid for farmers in four Minnesota counties after a rough weather year. In a letter to U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Pawlenty Monday sought a disaster declaration for Chippewa, Renville, Wright and Freeborn counties. "A secretarial declaration will allow affected farmers access to the U.S.
Willmar native Tom Erickson is U.S. Rep. Erik Paulsen's new communications director. Erickson, who has worked for Gov. Tim Pawlenty and former U.S. Sen. Norm Coleman, is leaving a job as National Republican Congressional Committee press secretary. His twin brother, Nick, works for the Minnesota Republican Party. "I am very excited to have an experienced communicator like Tom join our team," Paulsen said.
ST. PAUL -- Mark Dayton made one promise, in particular, hundreds of times in two years campaigning to become Minnesota's governor. It seldom differed much from what he said last January: "I promise that I will increase state funding for K-12 public education in real dollars every year I'm governor. No exceptions, no excuses." That was then, this is now: "I will do my utmost." What changed from "no exceptions, no excuses" to doing his "utmost?" Political and fiscal reality. The Democrat had been governor-elect only a couple of hours when he began to back away from campaign rhetoric.
ST. PAUL -- There is no doubt the election is over: Democrat Mark Dayton, Minnesota's governor elect, and Republican Tim Pawlenty, who holds the office until Jan.
Remarks made by Gov.-elect Mark Dayton Wednesday: This morning I received a telephone call from Representative Tom Emmer conceding the election for Governor of Minnesota. The day after the election, I received a similar call from Mr. Tom Horner.