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Reject this request until…

Minnesota State, aka MnSCU, has requested a budget increase of $178,000,000 over the next biennium. The higher education committees should reject that request if it isn’t tied to significant reforms. MnSCU is run by a chancellor who’s in way over his head. MnSCU’s Board of Trustees is, at least theoretically, supposed to provide oversight over […]

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Examining Trump’s Carrier deal

This article about President-Elect Trump’s deal with Carrier includes the obligatory ‘this sets a dangerous precedent’ quote. In this article, Steve Weitzner of Silverlode Consulting is quoted as saying “It’s a potentially dangerous policy where you reward a company that threatens to leave. It’s a dangerous precedent. Why wouldn’t every other company make the exact […]

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Bipartisanship litmus test

After Donald Trump’s victory, there’s been a noticeable outbreak of bipartisanship from red-state Democratic senators. For instance, “North Dakota Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) is ready to work with Republicans on legislation to invest in ‘clean coal’ technologies. More broadly, she says she’s willing to work across the aisle on regulatory reform. ‘My priority is standing […]

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Gazelka named Senate Majority Leader

Thursday, Senate Republicans voted to make Paul Gazelka the new Senate Majority Leader for the 2017-18 session. At his press conference after the vote, Sen. Gazelka said that “the Republican agenda for the 2017 session with include reduced government spending, tax relief and reduced healthcare costs.” There’s certainly a mandate to fix MNsure and Minnesota’s […]

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Darrell Downs, MnSCU & real change

I hope I get to meet Dr. Darrell Downs someday, hopefully soon. Dr. Downs’ op-ed is the most thoughtful, yet provocative, op-eds I’ve ever read. Having written more than a few LTEs and op-eds myself, I know what goes into writing something of this length and quality. First, I’d like to thank Dr. Downs for […]

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Ken Martin’s mythical Minnesota

With the end of session approaching quickly, the DFL’s spin operations are definitely ramping up. Spearheading their effort this year is DFL Chairman Ken Martin, starting with this op-ed. Predictably, it’s his responsibility to spin things in the DFL’s favor whether they’re rooted in truth or not. For instance, Chairman Martin isn’t telling the whole […]

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Trump’s what-ifs that never will be

This article features a Trump quote that isn’t attached to reality. Campaigning in Wisconsin earlier this week, Trump said “if we win Wisconsin, it’s going to be pretty much over.” The thing is that Sen. Cruz will win the Wisconsin primary with a fairly solid margin. Last night, Megyn Kelly asked conservative talk show host […]

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Clueless CNN, McConnell, Boehner

This article by CNN’s Maeve Reston and Stephen Collinson is a worthwhile read. That doesn’t mean they don’t get some important things wrong, though. It’s apparent that they think anyone calling themselves a TEA Party conservative agrees with Ted Cruz’s strategies 100% of the time. That’s apparent when they said “Despite the constitutional constraints on […]

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Special Session winners

Now that the Special Session is history, it’s time to reflect on what happened. The best way I know how to do that is by identifying the Sessions winners and losers. This post will deal with the winners. Kurt Daudt — He was simply masterful throughout. He proved to be a master negotiator, which nobody […]

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Bakk, DFL break promise

Prior to the start of Friday’s special session, Speaker Daudt, Rep. Thissen, Sen. Hann and Sen. Bakk signed an agreement with Gov. Dayton to pass the bills that they agreed to. Part of that agreement was that neither body would amend the bills that were pre-written and posted on the legislative website. When Sen. Bakk […]

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The case for MnSCU reform, Part II

Until recently, Rep. Gene Pelowski, (DFL-Winona), had a reputation of being a reformer of higher education systems. That reputation has slipped mightily in the last 3 years. I wrote this post to highlight how disengaged he’s been on higher education: Chairman Pelowski hasn’t held a single hearing looking into any of these disgraceful events. Examining […]

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TNR already attacking Sen. Rubio

Brian Beutler is one of the left’s most prominent attack puppies. He didn’t even wait for Sen. Rubio to declare his intention to run for the White House before launching an intellectually feeble attack. If this is the Left’s best shot, they’re in trouble: Senator Marco Rubio, who will announce his candidacy for president on […]

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Jazmyne McGill vs. Education Minnesota

When I read this article, I was furious. This story should never be told, in Minnesota or elsewhere: Despite meeting all of the requirements for a diploma, I had to take a class in college that covered material I had already passed in high school. Worse, this class wouldn’t earn me any credit toward a […]

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DFL’s autopilot budgets

MNGOP Chairman Keith Downey’s op-ed mentions a statistic that needs to be expanded upon: Most importantly, Schultz never once mentioned the most basic budget facts: State spending on autopilot is scheduled to grow 21 percent over four years, from $34 billion to $41 billion, without spending a dime of the surplus or raising any new […]

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NY Times almost gets it right

When I first skimmed this NY Times article, I thought it was a decent article, in part because of this analysis: Nonetheless, there will be demand for an alternative to Mr. Bush, even from within the so-called Republican establishment. Since Friday, attention has focused on Mitt Romney, who said in a meeting of top advisers […]

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Smart energy, Mike Beard edition

When he served in the legislature, Mike Beard was my go-to guy on energy and environmental issues. Two things impressed me about Mike. First, his understanding of energy and environmental issues is outstanding. The only thing more impressive than Mike’s understanding of energy and environmental issues was the fact that Mike Beard’s integrity was unassailable. […]

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Thoughtful MnSCU reform, Part I

Darrell Downs’ article is must reading for the House and Senate Higher Ed committees, the MnSCU Board of Trustees, Gov. Dayton, Commissioner Pogemiller and every taxpayer whose son or daughter is attending to thinking about attending a MnSCU university. Here’s the opening of the article: The icy standoff between campus faculty and the leadership of […]

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Rejecting senators as presidents

After John McCain lost in 2008, I spoke with a friend about senators becoming presidents. I half-kiddingly said that Republicans should pass a motion that senators should never be allowed to be the GOP’s presidential nominee. I know that such a resolution is impossible, which is why I said it in jest. That being said, […]

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Desperate attack vs. the truth hurts

Jeff Johnson’s latest ad is causing quite a stir: Republican gubernatorial candidate Jeff Johnson released a new television ad today that questions the competence of DFL Gov. Mark Dayton. Johnson’s ad is titled “Unaware.” The narrator contends that Dayton was unaware of bonuses paid to “failed Obamacare bureaucrats,” the contents of bills he signed and […]

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Scott Walker’s surge will continue

If this video gets the exposure it should, Mary Burke’s stumbles will continue: The Republican Party of Wisconsin put together a website highlighting Ms. Burke’s plagiarism difficulties. It’s called Copycat Mary. This article does an effective job highlighting Ms. Burke’s copycatted jobs plan: Madison – In an appearance on WISC-TV’s “??For the Record” today, Mary […]

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