Nonprofit, nonpartisan journalism. Supported by readers.


T-Paw, anti-abortion ‘Values Voters’ teaming up

AFTERNOON EDITION ALSO: The Iowa “circus”; Keillor turns 69 with “Spunk”; Ventura back in the movies; a remarkable child rescue story; Yeshiva High is closing; and more.
Read Tuesday Morning Edition


The AP notes T-Paw traveling with anti-abortion activists: “Anti-abortion activists were joined by Republican presidential hopeful Tim Pawlenty as they launched a bus tour promoting their conservative agenda. Speaking Tuesday morning outside the Iowa Capitol, Pawlenty touted his record in support of abortion restrictions while governor of Minnesota. He told a small knot of people watching the launch of the tour that anti-abortion forces will eventually win the debate by being persistent. Pawlenty credited a decline in abortions in Minnesota to work by abortion opponents to change public attitudes about the procedure.” I thought for a second he was going to credit it to “no new taxes.”

The Des Moines Register adds: “A bus tour of national groups opposed to abortion and same-sex marriage kicked off Tuesday morning in Des Moines before a large media contingent but few of the ‘values voters’ whom organizers are hoping to reach. The ‘Values Voter Bus Tour’ will roll through 22 Iowa cities over four days during one of the busiest weeks so far in the presidential caucus season. Along the way, it will link up with several presidential candidates as they reach out to voters ahead of Saturday’s Ames Straw Poll, an early test of their popularity and organization. The objective, organizers said, is to show that socially conservative issues have resonance in the presidential race, and must be considered alongside more immediate economic concerns. ‘Pro-lifers have not gone away,’ said Marilyn Musgrave, a project director for the Susan B. Anthony List and former U.S. representative from Colorado. ‘We have the economy on our minds, but we also have our core values that are so precious to us on our minds.’ ” And they will make their core values precious to you, too.

Jake Grovum of Politics in Minnesota looks at the circus in Iowa this week and writes: “Less than a week before the all-important Ames Straw Poll, Minnesota’s Michele Bachmann is sitting atop the GOP 2012 field in the Hawkeye State, according to a new Rasmussen poll. The survey published Monday of likely caucus voters shows Bachmann with 22 percent support, the most of any candidate and one of her stronger showings relative to the rest of the field since entering the race months ago. Mitt Romney garnered 21 percent support in the poll. Texas U.S. Rep. Ron Paul saw 16 percent, while Texas Gov. Rick Perry received 12 percent. For former Gov. Tim Pawlenty, the results show another disappointing performance: He registered 11 percent support in the poll, marking the dividing line between the front-runners such as Romney and Bachmann and the single-digit support candidates like Newt Gingrich (5 percent), Herman Cain (4 percent) and John Huntsman (2 percent).”

Garrison Keillor turned 69 Monday and celebrated up at Middle Spunk Lake. Says Paul Walsh of the Strib: “The master radio storyteller put on two shows Monday in the central-Minnesota town of Avon for diners at the Fisher’s Club along Middle Spunk Lake. Keillor’s birthday was the day before. Keillor became a co-owner of the club in 2005. The birthday menu included walleye and rhubarb pie, a staple offering on Keillor’s ‘A Prairie Home Companion’ weekly radio show, according to the restaurant’s website. At one point, Keillor and pianist Rich Dworsky serenaded the few dozen patrons with a soulful rendition of the Righteous Brothers’ ‘Unchained Melody.’ “

Jesse Ventura is driving back from Indiana. James Lileks of the Strib says: “Jesse Ventura is in a movie again. He’s playing the governor of Indiana. The Trib-Star says: ‘The film-makers sent his Los Angeles management a copy of the script, and it was Ventura’s understanding “the role was more or less written with me in mind,” he said. The fact that the movie is being filmed in Terre Haute and was written by Terre Haute natives — with Eugene Debs as inspiration — gives it authenticity and a Midwestern flair, Ventura said.’ Yes, reach for the Debs when you want authentic Midwestern flavor. The Tribune-Star — which sounds like a strange, mirror image of our paper, doesn’t it? — says today he’s heading home. In his car. Ventura was in Terre Haute Monday for filming; he returns to Minnesota today — and he’ll be making the approximate 10-hour drive, he said. He won’t fly because of a pending lawsuit against the Department of Homeland Security and Transportation Security Administration. In the lawsuit, he alleges full-body scans and pat-downs at airport checkpoints violate his right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures.”

Lee Rood of The Des Moines Register has a non T-Paw or Bachmann item related to Minnesota. She says: “A Minnesota professional fundraising group that raised money for several Iowa law enforcement associations has agreed to refrain from future fundraising in Iowa, as part of an agreement reached Tuesday with Attorney General Tom Miller. Public Safety Council, LLP, and Community Safety, LLC, both headquartered in Minneapolis, their subcontractor, Safety Services, LLC, of St. Paul, and their principals, J. Michael Callan and Robert T. Callan, entered into a formal agreement with the Attorney General to refrain from future fundraising or charitable solicitations in Iowa. The agreement takes effect immediately. … Association of Chiefs of Police and Peace Officers. In each case, the organizations received 15 to 16 percent of donations, while fundraisers retained 84 to 85 percent. Several calls, which were recorded by the Consumer Protection Division, revealed unfair and deceptive conduct.” I suppose the next thing you’ll tell me is that those emails from Nigeria are bogus …

Here’s a little kid with someone watching over him. Peter Passi of the Duluth News Tribune writes: “After just 19 months on the planet, few individuals have a more remarkable tale of survival to share than Karter Forsman. The smiling toddler returned to his Deephaven, Minn., home west of Minneapolis on Saturday after a weeklong stay at Essentia Health St. Mary’s Medical Center in Duluth. Eight days before, Karter was found floating face-down in Johnson Lake just south of Ely. He was not breathing, and his heart had stopped. It took at least 20 minutes to restore Karter’s heartbeat, but his grandfather, Paul Forsman, never gave up. … Forsman, a 53-year-old diabetic, had waded into the lake that morning with his grandson to clean up after the messy chore of washing his dog. But his blood sugar was running low, and he unexpectedly lost consciousness while in the water. Forsman isn’t sure exactly how long he remained unconscious, but when he came to, he was disoriented and nearly drowning himself. Forsman made his way to the dock only to turn and see Karter face-down in the water. Forsman quickly fished the boy out and began administering chest compressions.”

Money problems have closed Yeshiva High School. Jim Anderson of the Strib writes: “Yeshiva High School of the Twin Cities, the only Jewish boarding school in Minnesota, is closing its doors in Cottage Grove after struggling for five years to stay financially afloat. ‘The rain doesn’t just fall on the wicked, as they say,’ Rabbi Moshe Weiss said Monday. He has spent much of the past week clearing out the school that found a home in the old Eagle Grove Baptist Church. Since opening in 2006, the school grew rapidly from 18 students from around the world to 40, and received about 100 applicants a year. By almost every measure — educationally, spiritually and as a community— the school was successful, Weiss said. But financially, paying the mortgage proved too great an obstacle. When a $60,000 balloon payment came due in June on the contract to purchase the building from the Minnesota Baptist Conference, Premier Bank declined to work out a refinancing plan, Weiss said.”

Also from Iowa … beware the Cookie Monster. Says the AP: “Authorities say a registered sex offender wearing a Cookie Monster costume and greeting children was arrested at the Mississippi Valley Fair in Davenport because he’s not allowed to work or volunteer on the fairgrounds. The Scott County sheriff’s office say 25-year-old James Rogers, of Davenport, was arrested Friday. KWQC-TV says Rogers was wearing a Cookie Monster costume and took off the head to say ‘hello’ to a former parole supervisor, who recognized him.”