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
- 2 years 3 months
ST. PAUL -- Gov. Tim Pawlenty wants to double some sex offender sentences, the latest in a series of related moves over the years. Under the plan the Republican governor announced Tuesday, a first-degree sex offender would receive a sentence of at least 25 years, compared to the current 12- year sentence. The governor's plan, however, received mixed reaction from a group of key Democratic lawmakers. Sen.
ST. PAUL -- House Democrats say they want to hear from the public about how to reform state government, but Republicans say they already are presenting reforms. "We have been trying to reform government for a decade and been met with a deaf ear from Democrats," Minority Leader Kurt Zellers, R-Maple Grove, said. "We don't need another discussion group, we need action. Our proposals are still on the table and we are still willing to offer them for the good of Minnesota if Democrats are sincerely willing to listen." Rep.
Update 11 a.m.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota's primary election likely will be a month earlier than normal so military personnel and other Americans overseas have plenty of time to cast their ballots. A bill cleared its first legislative hurdle Friday moving the primary to Aug. 10. Without a law change, the primary vote would be Sept. 14. "There has been an argument over how early it should be," Sen.
Some legislators are considering gambling revenue to balance the Minnesota budget, one of the few surprises Thursday as the 2010 legislation session began. Legislators' major job is to plug a $1.2 billion hole in the state budget, a budget with nearly 18 months remaining.
ST. PAUL -- Sen. Keith Langseth hopes Gov. Tim Pawlenty likes a good sale. The Glyndon Democrat considers current construction costs a bargain because they are 15 percent to 20 percent lower than normal. Given that, he said Thursday, the state should invest nearly $1 billion in construction projects across Minnesota. "There's a sale going on out there," said Langseth, chairman of the Senate committee that funds public works projects. "This is the time to bond and build. ... The time to bond and build is during the down time when you get your best deals.
Minnesota legislators return to the state Capitol today for a session that promises to be little fun. Lawmakers will deal with the necessities, not the luxuries, as there is one overriding necessity on their minds: balance the state budget. People around the Capitol understand that.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota's precinct caucus straw polls cemented Marty Seifert's front-running role in the Republican governor's race, but the picture remains fuzzy for Democrats. While Minneapolis Mayor R.T.
Incomplete, unofficial results from precinct caucus straw polls, as reported by the Minnesota secretary of state's office: Democrat (3,282 of 4,129 precincts reporting) Tom Bakk, 1,334, 6.21 percent Matt Entenza, 1,451, 6.75 percent Susan Gaertner, 448, 2.08 percent Steve Kelley, 894, 4.16 percent Margaret Anderson Kelliher, 4,316, 20.08 percent John Marty, 2,070, 9.63 percent Felix Montez, 17, 9.63 percent Tom Rukavina, 1,555, 7,23 percent R.T.
ST. PAUL -- Two state representatives appeared poised to move away from other Republican governor candidates and a pair of well-known Democrats were battling for bragging rights Tuesday night as Minnesotans attending more than 8,000 neighborhood meetings began picking their favorites. Rep. Marty Seifert of Marshall led Rep. Tom Emmer of Delano in a GOP precinct caucus straw poll.