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Daily Brief: Tuesday, June 24th, 2014

In the Know

Minnesota DFL
June 24, 2014
Events today

  • 9:30 a.m. – Gov. Dayton will meet with Wright County emergency managers and local elected officials at Delano City Hall.
  • Noon – Gov. Dayton will attend the groundbreaking of a flood mitigation project in Chaska…It will take place at the Park and Ride at 822 Flying Cloud Drive in Chaska.
  • 1:30 p.m. – Gov.  Dayton will meet with Scott County emergency managers and local elected officials at the Belle Plaine Fire Department.
  • 3:15 p.m. – Gov. Dayton will meet with Dakota County emergency managers and local elected officials at VFW Post 6690 in Mendota.

Mark your calendars and spread the word!

  • 2 days until June 27 and people can begin to vote by no excuse absentee ballot for the Aug. 12 primary
  • 49 days until the Aug. 12 primary and our first opportunity to vote for DFL endorsed candidates
  • 87 days until Sept. 19 and people can begin to vote by no excuse absentee ballot for the Nov. 4 election
  • 132 days until the Nov. 4 election

2014 election
The 8 primaries to watch Tuesday, National Review

The teflon Governor, politics mn
Gov. Mark Dayton is starting to sound like candidate Dayton, Star Tribune
Seifert calls for transparency on MNsure rates, Marshall Independent

U.S. House
‘The Brad Pitt of the Republican Party’, Politico
Meet the new image of the GOP – Stewart Mills the III’s hair, mnpACT!
MNCD1 GOP primary challenger calls border humanitarian crisis “flash mob,” blames Walz,Bluestem Prairie

A difference of opinion is emerging among political handicappers on how competitive the Seventh Congressional District race between Democratic Rep. Collin Peterson and his Republican challenger, state Sen. Torrey Westrom, will be. The Cook Political Report rates the seat as “likely Democratic,” meaning Peterson is considered as safe a bet for re-election as fellow Reps. John Kline and Tim Walz. The Rothenberg Political Report and University of Virginia professor Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball rate it as “lean Democrat,” an indication that they see Westrom, with the aid of the national GOP, making a serious bid for Peterson’s seat. Star Tribune

@dwallbank, Derek Wallbank, U.S. House reporter for Bloomberg News, about a Politico profile of 8th Congressional District candidate Stewart Mills III:
#MN08 GOP challenger Stewart Mills profiled … Word ‘hair’ mentioned 16 times.”
U.S. Senate
McFadden to challenge for U.S. Senate seat, Hibbing Daily Tribune
Cochran, Rangel fight off challengers in Mississippi, New York on busy June primary day, Star Tribune
Racial politics churn Miss. GOP Senate runoff, Pioneer Press
Will Mississippi mudslinging give Dems a chance in South? The Hill

Democratic U.S. Sen. Al Franken is releasing his fourth re-election campaign ad today and it continues a trend. All four of his ads focus on the less partisan side of Senate work, with the aim of softening a still sharply divided Minnesota electorate as he seeks a second term. The most recent ad bashes Wall Street. “In the Senate, I reached across party lines and led the fight against this scam. Wall Street wasn’t happy about that, but I don’t work for them. I work for you,” he says in the ad. None of Franken’s Republican opponents have yet put significant resources into a television ad campaign. Star Tribune

Congressional delegation
Sen. Al Franken visits Century College to highlight efforts to close ‘skills gap’, KSTP

In Washington DC, U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Mike Lee (R-UT), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee, respectively, will hold a hearing examining the proposed AT&T-DIRECTV merger. At the hearing, the senators will question representatives from AT&T and DIRECTV, as well as advocacy and academic experts, about how the proposed merger would impact competition and consumers across the country. Morning Take

U.S. Rep. Tim Walz and other members of the negotiating team tasked with hashing out differences between the House and Senate bills designed to reform the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will have their first meeting today. Star Tribune
Minnesota’s economic growth beats national average while Wisconsin lags, Minnesota Budget Project
More advanced jobs put St. Paul teens on ‘Right Track’, Star Tribune
Counterpoint: Medtronic’s move will benefit all, Star Tribune
Talking Points: Medtronic’s overseas acquisition & taxes, WCCO

Survey: Minnesota firms optimistic about economy, MPR
Commercial development red hot in Mankato, Mankato Free Press
Commerce Department: Reject 60% of Xcel’s electric rate hike, Star Tribune
Coming soon: courthouse campaign stop, Star Tribune
Local government lobbying costs increased to $8 million in 2013, Star Tribune
President Obama visit Thursday will feature Minneapolis woman, Star Tribune
Late-in-life: To live at home, rural seniors need food, socialization, support, MinnPost
Steel dumping
Dayton joins Iron Range miners pressing for end to illegal steel dumping, Star Tribune
Photos: Iron Range rally to stop illegal steel dumping, Star Tribune
Save Our Steel, Mesabi Daily News
Rally on the Range: Steps to stop steel dumping in the U.S., Northland News Center
Storm aftermath
Stillwater Bridge closure adds to high-water headaches for metro drivers, Star Tribune
Minnesota state of emergency extended. Dayton: the scale of the flooding is ‘overwhelming’,Star Tribune
Rep. John Kline tours flooded areas in Minnesota’s Second District; flood relief planning discussed, ECM
Minnesota rivers move toward crests; state begins to look toward cleanup, Pioneer Press
Flood update: St. Paul emergency, Stillwater bridge closing, insurance help, MPR
Dayton to meet with emergency managers Tuesday, KSTP
Emergency order extended as flood waters keep rising, MPR
Tax fairness: How Minnesota compares to other states, Minnesota 2020
Got a problem? Blame it on taxes. Minnesota 2020
Unhappy with caucus system? Get involved
In an election year, someone can always be counted on to complain about caucuses and endorsements — and get it wrong.
A letter writer (Readers Write, June 18) claims that people who can’t get to caucuses can’t be delegates. In my party, you don’t have to be there — you can run for delegate by sending a letter. The writer also erroneously claims that parties do not encourage “we the people” to select candidates. In my party, we “activists” (aka your volunteer neighbors) make active attempts to get people to the caucuses, engage them in volunteering and encourage them to vote.

The problem with caucuses and endorsements is not the smoky room, it’s the empty room. Details about caucuses are widely publicized, yet only hundreds out of tens of thousands bother to show up. Even fewer become delegates and quite often delegate seats go unfilled. The notion that a few people decide who gets endorsed is undoubtedly true, but that’s apathy, not “activists.”
As to whether wealthy individuals and groups make parties less relevant (“In primary fights, Minnesota parties fight for relevance,” June 16), I’ll just note that parties are you and me.

Outside money is spent entirely to influence (or fool) you and me, meaning that the voter, at least in states without voter suppression efforts, still holds the power. If voters want to counter big money, they need to show up, work for and vote for candidates who represent the people. Believe me, the “activists” in my party would be thrilled.
George F. Greene, Brooklyn Park                                                             Star Tribune letter to the editor

White House Summit on Working Families
Democrats hope for work-life balance to act as lever in midterms, NPR




The problem with ‘going all Scott Walker on Minnesota,’ Minnesota 2020

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