Nonprofit, nonpartisan journalism. Supported by readers.


Nix on the expanded Castle Doctrine, says Dayton

Despite their pleasantries last week, Gov. Dayton vetoed GOP Rep. Tony Cornish’s latest gun bill. The MPR story, by Tom Scheck, says: “In his veto letter to the Legislature, Governor Dayton said he vetoed the bill because most major law enforcement agencies raised issues about the bill. Dayton said he appreciated the efforts to craft the bill to ease worries by law enforcement but said their concerns ‘must be honored.’ The bill would have given gun owners significantly more latitude to use deadly force for self defense. It would have allowed the use of deadly force with a weapon if people believe they are in imminent danger in a home, hotel room, car, boat or tent. The National Rifle Association issued a statement saying it was disappointed with Dayton’s veto.”

At the Strib, Jim Ragsdale says: “The bill, sponsored by Rep. Tony Cornish, R-Good Thunder, and Sen. Gretchen Hoffman, R-Vergas, was the top priority of the National Rifle Association and drew some DFL votes in addition to near-unanimous Republican support. The measure passed by votes of 40-23 in the Senate and 85-47 in the House. … Cornish, a Republican from Good Thunder, said the opposition stemmed from the executives of law enforcement organizations ‘not the rank and file.’ He said that the measure may take some time to become law but it will be back.” So we can gather that the cops actually in danger of taking fire were OK with the bill, is that right?

Oh, what the hey. Let’s throw in another stadium while we’re at it. The Strib editorializes in favor of a new ballpark for downtown St. Paul: “City leaders wisely want to use the property for a new regional ballpark that would be the new home for the St. Paul Saints minor-league baseball team. It’s a polluted site with limited options for reuse, but a good match for a 7,500-seat ballpark. The Central Corridor light-rail line will feed into the site. The ballpark is seen as so critical to the downtown’s economic development plans that city leaders have made the new $54 million facility their No. 1 legislative priority, Mayor Chris Coleman told the Star Tribune Editorial Board last month. … Sen. Geoff Michel, an Edina Republican, said the Saints have put their stadium proposal forward in a smart and strategic way. ‘They’ve made it bipartisan,’ he said. ‘They’ve got their local chamber leading the way. They’ve raised private funds. They’ve got a strong local partner in the city of St. Paul. They have stepped up so it almost stands in good contrast with the Vikings stadium drama. This is how to do a stadium.’ Let’s hope Michel can convince his legislative colleagues that the regional project is worthy of their support.”

Interior design junkies are apparently palpitating over news that a new high-end retail store is coming to town. At City Pages, Jessica Armbruster writes: “Soon, Uptown shoppers will be able to make their lives even more posh when modern pottery, furniture, and lifestyle store Jonathan Adler opens this month. The store is pretty, but at times pricey (while cruising through the site we found a knitted water-bottle cozy that costs over $100, but there’s also a section featuring gift ideas under $30). Items offered include furniture, pottery, knickknacks, and gifts (think Pottery Barn meets Andy Warhol).” Will my brew cellar collection of vintage Keystone Light cans fit in those knitted cozies?  

At its board meeting last night, the Anoka-Hennepin school district voted 5-1 to settle two suits against them. Steve Karnowski at the AP writes: “The Anoka-Hennepin School Board approved the settlement 5-1 at its meeting Monday evening. The district agreed to a long list of measures to help prevent and address sex-based harassment at its middle and high schools, including hiring consultants and working with federal authorities to ensure the district complies with the terms. The district’s insurance carrier will pay the six current and former students named in the lawsuits a total of $270,000, and the district will tap about $500,000 of its own funds to implement the agreement.”

Want to get out of the taking-off-the-shoes shtick at MSP? Get in line. John Welbes at the PiPress writes: “Travelers are always advised to book airline travel months ahead of time. The same is starting to hold true for applications to Global Entry, a new service to speed travelers through customs and security lines. In-person interviews for the program are already booked through April 23 at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, with customs officials weighing the possibility of opening more slots. Global Entry is ‘your ticket to get out of line,’ said David Murphy, director of field operations for U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Those accepted into the program can bypass the security lines that require you to take off shoes, or wait for an exit interview with a customs official when returning from an international trip.” And what about those al-Qaida-certified quarters you forgot in your pocket?

One stadium-related bill went pretty much nowhere Monday. Doug Belden of the PiPress reports: “Sponsor Roger Chamberlain, R-Lino Lakes, said there wasn’t time Monday to take the bill up in the Local Government and Elections committee but that he intends to pursue it even as the stadium bill getting all the attention — the one being written off the ‘term sheet’ for a downtown Minneapolis stadium unveiled last week — is expected to be introduced soon. Chamberlain’s bill would have the state issue $300 million in bonds paid back with stadium user fees and would leave any additional money to be raised by the Vikings and/or the local business community. As an incentive, it would phase out statewide business property taxes.”

Now here’s an (alleged) menace. Says Andy Rathbun in the PiPress: “A man suspected of throwing objects at cars last week in Bloomington — including a vise that struck a motorist in the face — has been arrested for the second time in three days after allegedly fleeing police in Wisconsin. Gerret Daniel Parks, 39, of Bloomington, was charged [Monday] in Polk County Circuit Court with felony fleeing police in a vehicle and remained in the Polk County Jail. Police were called at about 6 p.m. Sunday to a report of a man driving recklessly in a black sports utility vehicle on Worth Street in St. Croix Falls, Wis. While en route, police received a call from another citizen, who reported he had almost been struck by a black SUV, according to police. Parks was spotted by police driving an SUV at speeds of more than 70 mph in a 35-mph zone in the city, according to a report from the St. Croix Falls police department.”

Sally Jo Sorensen at Bluestem Prairie continues to be fascinated with GOP Rep. Mary Franson’s video comparing welfare recipients to animals in national parks: “It’s interesting to observe that amid the furor over Mary Franson’s nasty, internet-spawned ‘ironic’ comparison of feeding poor people with food stamps with feeding wild animals in national parks, there’s been little to no discussion of the ‘reforms’ in the Daudt bill that Franson used the ‘joke’ to introduce. … Even after a pseudo-apology and pulling of the Youtube from the MNGOP House caucus, Franson continued to insist that the reforms (carefully excised from the version that the Alliance for a Better Minnesota posted on its … page where people could register outrage via a petition) would increase ‘self-dependence’ which Bluestem takes to be the Franson-speak version of stalwart American virtues like ‘self-reliance’ or ‘independence.’ … her light-hearted delivery of the “ironic” bit is even more senseless and cruel, told less as a caution[ary] tale than as the imposition of the insensitive neighborhood jerk whose habitual tastelessness generates the most awkward of moment[s] at barbeques.”

Comments (29)

  1. Submitted by Jackson Cage on 03/06/2012 - 08:41 am.


    If a ballpark for an obscure, irrelevant minor league baseball operation is “critical” forn the survival of your downtown, maybe you just shouldn’t bother having a downtown…..

    • Submitted by James Hamilton on 03/06/2012 - 08:51 am.

      We need a stadium for the Saints

      so that we have people using light rail who will stop at the depot on their way to the game. (We’ve spent almost 5 times as much on the depot already.)

  2. Submitted by James Hamilton on 03/06/2012 - 08:54 am.

    The use of deadly force already is legal

    if you can’t retreat and it is reasonably proportionate to the threat you face. This isn’t the Old West; there’s no shame in avoiding the taking of a life.

    • Submitted by Thomas Swift on 03/06/2012 - 09:31 am.

      Therein lies the rub, James.

      Who decides what constitutes an inability to retreat? Right now, it’s a prosecutor whose job relies on racking up convictions.

      A standard warning every competent firearms instructor gives his students is “if you have to use your weapon to defend yourself, expect to be arrested; expect tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees”. That is the reality of the legal landscape.

      Dayton won by less than 1% of the vote. It really wont take too very many dissapointed independents, or Iron Range Democrats to give him more time to admire his Renoirs when he comes up for re-election…especially after the integrity of our ballots has been secured.

      • Submitted by Bill Gleason on 03/06/2012 - 11:51 am.

        Mr. Swift needs to do a little research on what

        real prosecutors actually do in gun cases. A recent example in my ‘hood, down on Lake Street, is instructive:

        “Man who shot Minneapolis robber won’t be charged

        Hennepin County attorney said the man, who was not identified to protect him, acted in self-defense.”

        Star Tribune, link:

        I can’t think of a recent Minnesota case where conviction hungry prosecutors went after anyone with a decent self-defense claim. I can think of several recent gun-related deaths of police officers, most recently in Lakeville:

        “Schneider, 32, a nine-year veteran of the Lake City Police Department and a father of three young children, and a well-known figure in the picturesque river town of 5,000, was shot in the head while responding to a domestic dispute on the morning of Dec. 19.”

        Lake City officer shot during domestic call dies
        Star Tribune, link:

        People like you, Mr. Swift, should pay attention to the position of law enforcement on gun bills. They should not be put at any further risk, unnecessarily. I thank Governor Dayton for taking the opinion of law enforcement into account in vetoing this most recent gun bill. I also call to your attention, noted in the veto letter, that a reciprocity provision was slipped into this bill that would further endanger police officers. Minnesota would be required to accept out of state conceal/carry permits with pitifully low requirements.

        And I hope you recall, Mr. Swift, that Governor Dayton was elected in a three way race. Should he choose to run for re-election he will win in a walk over, as recent polls clearly show. Elections, more and more, will be decided on the basis of the votes of independents who do not seem fond of right wing extremism, lately.

        • Submitted by Thomas Swift on 03/06/2012 - 01:27 pm.

          Bill, I realize

          That you consider yourself a fount of wisdom, and we *all* appreciate your valuable insights, so I hope you won’t mind if I point out that google might be your friend, but dragging a couple of anecdotes out of the ether doesn’t make much of an argument.

          Actually, the second of your links proves that the objections we’ve heard are nothing more than baseless hysterics since the Lakeville officer was shot in the absence of the proposed law by a man who did not have a carry permit.

          I’d respectfully recommend you spend a little time talking to people who are more knowledgeable about this subject….attending a concealed carry class perhaps.

          • Submitted by Bill Gleason on 03/06/2012 - 02:37 pm.

            Mr. Swift

            you have misinterpreted what I said.

            The Lake City [sic] example is that of a police officer who died in the line of duty from a firearm. It is a dangerous job.

            Let me repeat for your benefit:

            “People like you, Mr. Swift, should pay attention to the position of law enforcement on gun bills. They should not be put at any FURTHER risk, UNNECESSARILY.” (emphasis added for your benefit)

            And this new Shoot First bill puts police at further unnecessary risk, according to the police themselves and in the governor’s judgment. To claim that this example is nothing more than baseless hysterics is simply absurd.

            Talk to people who are a little more knowledgeable about the subject? Take a conceal/carry lesson?

            First, I have experience with firearms, handguns as well as hunting rifles. Second your comment is totally unrelated to the topic at hand, namely whether police safety will be decreased by this law. To pretend that no one can have an informed opinion on this matter without the experience of having taken a concealed/carry course is ridiculous.

            And I note, again, that you have totally ignored my point about lowering the conceal/carry standards for out of staters by a sneaky reciprocity provision that proponents tried to get by. We’ve discussed this before in other comments sections and you continue to ignore this point.

            In the future, I respectfully request that you please read what I have written carefully before knee jerk responses.

            Misinterpretations such as the present one may thus be less likely.

          • Submitted by Robert Gauthier on 03/06/2012 - 06:15 pm.

            Me thinks”…..

            Funny, I thought your comment was a bit sweeping and I’ll-informed.

  3. Submitted by Dennis Tester on 03/06/2012 - 09:22 am.

    Politicians like Mark Dayton

    are good for the conservative movement. They remind us what we’re up against come election time and they aid in recruitment.

  4. Submitted by Neal Krasnoff on 03/06/2012 - 09:27 am.

    There is no duty to retreat

    when I’m in my own home. I will protect my life and my property. I will give none over to an invader.

    The invader will get carried out in a body bag.

    • Submitted by Josh Williams on 03/06/2012 - 10:21 am.

      And thus the veto

      Mr. Krasnoff,

      Perhaps I misunderstand, but it seems as if you are almost eager to take a life. It seems to me that that is just the type of attitude that made the shoot first legislation a bad idea. Taking another human’s life should a last resort, not the first option for those too eager to pull the trigger.

  5. Submitted by Neal Krasnoff on 03/06/2012 - 09:34 am.

    Another reason why I left the DFL

    The DFL Governor of Minnesota, hiding behind armed agents of the State for his protection, believes a violent felon has a right to a presumption of innocence and a law abiding homeowner defending his life, family and property has none.

    • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 03/06/2012 - 03:43 pm.

      No rights!

      Except for those in Minn. Stat. 609.065, which allows a person to take the life of another “when necessary in resisting or preventing an offense which the actor reasonably believes exposes the actor or another to great bodily harm or death, or preventing the commission of a felony in the actor’s place of abode.”

      I know, it’s terrible when reality gets in the way of sniping at liberals, isn’t it?

      • Submitted by Neal Krasnoff on 03/06/2012 - 11:31 pm.

        “when necessary”

        As interpreted at the discretion of the District Attorney.

        • Submitted by Pat Berg since 2011 on 03/07/2012 - 09:10 am.

          And your preference is vigilantism?

          Some of us would rather not return to the Wild West.

          • Submitted by Neal Krasnoff on 03/07/2012 - 12:01 pm.

            oh no…

            not *that* cliche again… ;-(

            • Submitted by Pat Berg since 2011 on 03/07/2012 - 01:23 pm.

              It’s not a cliche if it’s true

              You don’t seem to want to trust the discretion of the District Attorney, preferring instead that each person take matters into their own hands.

              That’s pretty much vigilantism. And that’s pretty much Wild West.

        • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 03/07/2012 - 10:25 am.

          “When necessary”

          Ultimately, it’s up to a jury to decide.

          In the United States, we still have trials where the facts are decided by juries. The prosecutor decides which charges to bring, but doesn’t get a conviciotn based on his say-so. Rep. Cornish’s bill wouldn’t take that away, it would just give the jury a new realm for decision making.

          • Submitted by Neal Krasnoff on 03/07/2012 - 12:07 pm.

            Well, not really.

            There would be a presumption of innocence on the part of the District Attorney. Absent aggravating circumstances, the District Attorney would not charge the person in question. A jury would never see the case.

            • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 03/07/2012 - 02:22 pm.

              Plus ca change . . .

              In other words, the same way things work now. Except, of course, leaving things as they are now won’t get the “I need a gun to be a man” crowd riled up in an election year.

  6. Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 03/06/2012 - 09:48 am.

    Can We Just Call the NRA What it Is, Please:

    The National Gun Manufacturer’s, Gun Importer’s and Gun Retailer’s Association?

    These people are trying to take us back to the Old West where EVERYONE has to own a gun and buy ammunition for ONE purpose and one purpose only,…

    to maximize their own profits (no matter what the death toll).

    With the support of the type of dysfonic gun owners who feel the need of a gun constantly on their person to fill in for the aspects of their personalities that would have given them a sense of inherent strength and independence,…

    aspects which were beaten out of them (literally or figuratively) by the people and communities that raised them,…

    in other words, the people whose desperate need to possess and use firearms makes them EXACTLY the people most likely to inappropriately shoot first and only later consider whether they SHOULD have killed that innocent bystander,…

    the Guns Make Me Money folks would wipe out two hundred years of civilization in order to return us to “might makes right” and “I get to call the shots because my gun’s bigger than your gun” (or I can “draw” faster),…

    where our culture of law and courts is completely supplanted by a culture whose nature, in each locality, is determined by the emotional whims and moods of its most violence-prone residents.

    Put down your Zane Grey novels, folks, remind yourselves that they are FICTION and even the Old West wasn’t actually like that, and join the rest of us, here, in the twenty-first century!

    • Submitted by Pat Berg since 2011 on 03/12/2012 - 06:13 pm.

      What I really hate . . .

      is that when I walk into my church – that place that should be a peaceful retreat from the world and the worst that mankind has to offer – the last thing I see in passing through the entrance is the sign reminding everyone that they aren’t allowed to bring their guns in with them.

      My church. And every time I walk into it, because of that stupid concealed carry law, I can’t escape being reminded of guns, and their delightful new legal status in Minnesota.

      These kinds of things create basic change in the prevailing culture of a place.

      Never doubt that.

  7. Submitted by Dan Landherr on 03/06/2012 - 10:12 am.

    Interesting to see people dismiss concerns of law enforcement

    Good to see Dayton pay attention to law enforcement, especially after a shooting of an officer in Lake City. Sometimes a veto means you end up passing a better law that all parties find acceptable.

    “phase out statewide business property taxes”

    Are they also phasing out business fire and police protection, business snow removal, business road repair, and putting additional surcharges on water and sewer?

  8. Submitted by Bernice Vetsch on 03/06/2012 - 12:11 pm.

    Hi Jackson

    The St. Paul Saints have played baseball at the old (ancient) stadium near the fairgrounds for several decades. Owner Bill Murray visited St. Paul to see games and play golf. The stadium now has to be torn down, however, and the Saints have to move.

    It may be an “obscure” team in a less-than-famous league, but it has provided a lot more fun than most major sports teams . Its mascot was for years a pot-bellied Vietnamese pig. Sister Roseanne Gefre gave neck massages. Various forms of entertainment were offered and I believe those who like tailgating never had to give it up. Plus, ticket prices were affordable for almost everyone. None of these things will change when the team moves downtown, but it will be easier to reach.

  9. Submitted by David Wintheiser on 03/06/2012 - 12:22 pm.

    Labor dispute sign…

    …and a couple of people standing in front of the Holiday Stationstores headquarters on the 494 frontage road between France and Normandale. Any idea what that’s about?

  10. Submitted by Robert Gauthier on 03/06/2012 - 06:14 pm.

    Jobs jobs

    Another fine Republican job creating bill, building castles! More fine conservative fiscal policy!

  11. Submitted by Terry Elliott on 03/07/2012 - 05:27 pm.

    Law enforcement officials

    These guys were 100% against concealed carry in the first place. This is exactly the same in every state, btw. Their horror stories never came true. Why should Dayton believe their “concerns” will come true now?

    Overlooked is the portion of the bill that would prevent these same officials from confiscating guns in the case of an emergency, as was done in New Orleans and many other individual cases where “your rights are suspended.”


Leave a Reply