Republican senator promises stadium bill next month


As yet another panel fell out of the Metrodome’s deflated roof, a Republican senator is promising to put a Vikings stadium bill up next month. Mike Kaszuba posts on The Strib’s “Hot Dish Politics” blog: “Sen. Julie Rosen, a Republican from Fairmont, said she planned to introduce a bill in late January to build a new Minnesota Vikings stadium with public subsidies. With Republicans assuming a majority in the House and Senate in January, Rosen said she had already talked to Sen. Julianne Ortman, R-Chanhassen, the incoming Senate Taxes Committee chair. ‘She’s committed to hearing it,’ said Rosen, who said the proposal would likely face an ‘end-of-session vote’ after the Legislature addressed the state’s $6.2 billion budget deficit.” Which is assuming there is an “after” … after the budget gets put back in balance.

House Speaker-to-be John Boehner is taking Tea Party heat for leaving noted tax expert Michele Bachmann off the influential Ways and Means Committee. Politico reports: “The conflict is evidence of a broader rift between the Republican establishment and tea-party supporters, who helped vault the GOP to power this year. ‘She’s a former tax lawyer,’ Jenny Beth Martin, co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots told Politico. ‘I think she has the background necessary to be on Ways and Means. I think it shows leadership doesn’t particularly support her.’ ” Martin added, with no evident irony: “Incoming House Republican leadership doesn’t understand how serious Americans are about getting the economy under control. They are not picking the most fiscally responsible people.’ “

Sally Jo Sorenson at the Bluestem Prairie blog points us to a piece by Carolyn Lange in the West Central Tribune reporting that Tom Emmer owes the taxpayers of Kandiyohi some counting money: “Sam Modderman doesn’t know exactly how many hours he and his staff spent preparing a cache of documents requested by Tom Emmer during the governor’s recount. But he knows the county hasn’t been paid for the work. ‘We completed all the requests, but no, we haven’t gotten paid for them all,’ the Kandiyohi County auditor said. It’s a common story that’s been reported in other counties who rushed to prepare documents requested by the Emmer campaign but then didn’t get paid for the work.” Tony Sutton has an account for matters like this, right?

Lots of issues to be worked out before the Vikings use TCF Bank Field Monday night. The Fox9 story says: “There are more Vikings season ticket holders than can fit into TCF Bank Stadium, and ticket broker Ticket King speculates the team may need to base seating on seniority. As of Wednesday afternoon, season ticket holders and fans with tickets to Monday’s game had not been contacted by the Vikings or the U of M. Parking could also get messy. There are roughly 10,000 student section seats at the stadium for Gophers games, meaning roughly 10,000 more people will need parking than usual. As for public transit, the U of M doesn’t have the convenience of a light rail stop outside the stadium gates like the Metrodome does.”

Stay classy, pal. KSTP’s Chris Keating has the story of a Salvation Army bellringer caught stealing … from his own kettle. “A kettle bell ringer with The Salvation Army was caught red handed while dipping into the till outside a Cub Foods in Eagan. Police say Andrew Todd Anderson was spotted by an employee and by surveillance camera at Cub reaching into the kettle with a tweezer.” Keating says the annual drive brings in about $3 million in the Twin Cities, but this year so far … only $1.6 million.

MPR’s Steven John talks with local veteran rocker Chris Osgood about the 40th anniversary of First Avenue. This part was good:

John: How has First Avenue changed since those early days? Other than non-smoking music fans are breathing a bit easier.

Osgood: The most important and most noticeable difference is the smell. You’re right. At first, and this is with all due respect to First Ave, it was a little shocking to go in and smell it without the blanket of cigarette smoke because you could detect other nuances and aromas that … weren’t apparent before that. But here’s the cool thing about First Ave, and I was thinking about this when us and the Suburbs were down there a few weeks ago … The feeling of being there was just like going back in time and going home, in a weird sort of way. And the other thing that I was thinking about and laughing about with Sam Choo, your producer, is that when we were playing at First Ave originally, it was such an icon of anti-establishment-ism. It’s where you would go downtown to experience the significantly different or other. And the fact that that anti-establishment place has become an institution in its own right says something. I haven’t figured out what that is.”                         

ID this quote: “ ‘I look forward to being back outdoors the way I was always used to watching games and enjoying games.” If you said, “Bud Grant,” you probably overlooked the stumble-mouth factor. It’s Zygi Wilf, folks, down in Dallas at a league meeting. The KSTP story, by Chris Long, finds Wilf refusing to take the bait on new stadium rhetoric. ” ‘I’ve always advocated having a new stadium.  But right now, we’re making sure we’re getting the venue ready for this coming week and we’ll talk about addressing those issues as they come up,’ Wilf said.”

New-order conservatives are still pretty worked up over … criticism of the GOP for purging such old-school Republicans
as Al Quie, Dave Durenberger and Arne Carlson. Witness the “Let Freedom Ring” blog: “In droves, people have said they want politicians who say what they mean and mean what they say. Meanwhile, Sen. Durenberger, Gov. Quie and Gov. Carlson essentially said that they’re too big to be bothered by governing principles, living up to a party platform and actually doing things that identify themselves as Republicans. By endorsing a snake oil salesman [Tom Horner], they essentially said that that sort of loyalty was beneath them. They said that they’d prefer playing personality politics than being principled politicians. At a time when voters across the state and nation are telling politicians that they want politicians with a spine, the MNGOP not only has the right to stand up to politicians who think they can do whatever they want. They have an affirmative responsibility to protect the conservative brand.” So … if I understand the argument here … voters want politicians with spines, but only if their spines submit to the party apparatus?

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Comments (10)

  1. Submitted by Gary Gross on 12/16/2010 - 07:15 am.

    As the person who wrote the aforementioned post on LFR, let me explain my point.

    People are free to disagree…to a point. When high profile politicians stray from the principles that a political party has traditionally stood for, it’s cause for concern. When these politicians stray from these principles and endorse a candidate from a different political party, then it’s proper for the party to discipline them.

    In short, as I wrote here, principles matter:

  2. Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 12/16/2010 - 08:36 am.

    //stray from the principles that a political party has traditionally stood for..

    Tradition Gary? Since when, 2001? The whole point here is that right wing fanaticism, anti rationality, and narrow minded social focus has NOT been the traditional position of the MN Republican party. Quie, Carlson, and Durenburger ARE the traditional republicans. Now you can reject that if you want, it’s your party, you guys can change it if you want, but don’t pretend your new found intolerance is a tradition, be honest.

  3. Submitted by Brad Robinson on 12/16/2010 - 08:44 am.

    Mr. Gross,
    Of course it’s “cause for concern.” The point is the Republican Party left its own principles and became a party of ideologues rather than constructivists. These people who have been outed represent the Republican base, and the the current party powers did themselves a major disservice following Tony Sutton and Emmer.

  4. Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 12/16/2010 - 08:57 am.

    Considering that Mickey Bachmann has demonstrated quite publicly that she doesn’t know the difference between “net” and “gross” income, I can’t think of anyone in congress LESS qualified to serve on the Ways and Means Committee.

    As far as the new stadium… the rush to provide public financing at a time when we’re going to be making deep cuts in other, far more necessary areas such as education funding and reimbursement for nursing homes, is akin to taking your elderly, infirm, can’t-be-left-alone mother or your newborn baby along to a big New Year’s Eve party, then leaving them to freeze to death out in a cold car while you party hardy with your friends.

    If the Vikings can’t survive without the rest of the people in the neighborhood chipping in to build them a much bigger, better house than the very serviceable one they already have, a house which far exceeds the level of luxury provided by our own houses (which we’re desperately trying to keep out of foreclosure), a house which they could build with their own money if they chose to do so, a house which many of us will never enter, perhaps it’s time to let them move out of the neighborhood. Those of us who would miss them (including local media sports writers and commentators) can surely continue to cover them by watching them on TV or flying off to watch them play live wherever they’re based in the future.

    Meanwhile, keeping real people alive and well and properly cared for here in our own neighborhoods will be more possible if we don’t allow the Vikings to suck money they could easily come up with themselves out of the public treasury.

    If we don’t value grandmas and newborns more than the Vikings we have truly lost our way.

  5. Submitted by Matthew Hauck on 12/16/2010 - 09:03 am.

    All this talk about subsuming the individual to “the party” reminds me of something, somewhere…Ah yes, Moscow 1936.
    ‘Purges (or simply purges, Russian: “чистка”, chistka – “cleansing”) with a “small-p” purge was one of the key rituals during which a periodic review of party members was conducted to get rid of the “undesirables”.’

    In all seriousness, the modern obsession with ideological purity hurts the country and hurts the parties that engage in it. Ideologues on the left and right often look to moderates as some sort of guileless opportunists. However, it seems that the moderate members of the parties are often the ones doing the actual business of governing and willing to tell voters that there are tough compromises that have to be made.

  6. Submitted by John Olson on 12/16/2010 - 09:42 am.

    The contradiction is striking: while one group of individuals are purged from the party for straying “from the principles that a political party has traditionally stood for,” another member of the same party (who presumably has not been purged) goes public with the idea of a publicly-funded Vikings stadium.

    So much for “walking the walk.”

  7. Submitted by Beryl John-Knudson on 12/16/2010 - 09:49 am.

    “Bell ringer steals from Red Kettle”…

    Stealing from the red kettle is merely a metaphor of the day maybe…next we’ll find out Santa; god herself or J.C are the biggest shareholders in WalMart?

    Sad truths indeed…when in a nation where begging is a necessary part of survival; where ‘opportunity’ rarely knocks for some anymore in these desperate times…and others profess the religion of ‘exceptionalism’…in a nation slowly creeping blind; in a country soon to reach third-world status before you can sing all the once so respectable verses of God-bless-America?

  8. Submitted by Neal Rovick on 12/16/2010 - 10:10 am.

    The comment that ends the “Let Freedom Ring” blog post:

    “The truth is that the MNGOP isn’t nearly as strident as the DFL and their compliant lap puppies would have people believe.”

    reveals the level of delusion that is operational in the Republican party at this time. What “lap puppies” do the DFL have? Look at the recent election. Was the selected candidate, Keliher, the winner of the primary? Did Dayton even go through the endorsement process?

    If the person writing the blog doesn’t recognize that the Democratic party can be best characterized as a process of “herding cats” in a big, big tent, that person’s opinion can be best characterized as uninformed partisan drivel.

    It’s unfortunate, but true. Ideological purity means leaving your brains at the door. Life is never that simple or clear.

  9. Submitted by Neal Rovick on 12/16/2010 - 10:42 am.

    “I look forward to being back outdoors the way I was always used to watching games and enjoying games.”

    Mr Wilf is positioning the Vikings as wanting a new stadium, not necessarily with a roof.

    However, he knows that the local climate makes a roof more desirable. He also knows that most fans want one. And, he knows that a stadium that might possibly have significant other rental possibilities must have a roof.

    So therefore, a roof would be at the discretion of the public funding authority and would be at the expense of the public. The cost of the roof system would be entirely on the public as it is not wanted by the Vikings.

    So goes the negotiations.

  10. Submitted by Hénock Gugsa on 12/16/2010 - 11:01 am.

    I read somewhere recently that Ms. Bachmann was in contention for the House Speaker-ship position. (Obviously, she did not get it or withdrew her name.) But, could this have been the reason for her being “snubbed”?

    Ah yes, we all know that these dern politicians in Washington are petty and spiteful, don’t we?

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