St. Paul wants the GOP’s Voter ID amendment off the November ballot. Andy Greder at the PiPress says, “St. Paul has challenged the legality of the constitutional amendment requiring voters to present photo ID at the polls. In a so-called ‘friend of the court’ amicus brief filed to the Minnesota Supreme Court on Monday, June 18, the city questions the accuracy of the language voters will read if the amendment reaches ballots. It also says Gov. Mark Dayton’s veto of the bill in April should force the Republican-led Legislature to rewrite the question and the amendment’s title. ‘The so-called ‘photo ID’ question is not authorized by law and should not be placed on the ballot,’ St. Paul City Attorney Sara Grewing said in a statement. ‘The Minnesota Supreme Court should order that this bill be sent back to the Legislature for a veto override or further legislative clarification.’ ” Is there any legal precedent for requiring “proof of need”?
What was just noisy and wet in most places did serious damage in the south metro. Susan Feydor and Asha Anchan of the Strib report, “In Burnsville, the city’s water treatment plant has been without power all day. The plant is operating on an emergency generator and the city is stressing that water remains safe for drinking. The city estimated that about 75 trees were down, some of them blocking streets. Lakeville city crews have been working to clear streets of downed trees and branches, especially in the northeastern and southern sections of the city, officials said. And in Hastings, many streets remained closed as crews continued to clear fallen trees and downed power lines, and about 1,200 homes were still without power as of noon, the city said. At one point early today, about 72,000 residents were without power after storms spewing heavy rain, hail and howling winds barged in about 4 a.m.”
On Paul Douglas’ weather site he says, “This Morning’s Storms. MPX Doppler rainfall estimates shows the heaviest (1.5 to 2″) rainfall amounts from Montevideo into the northern suburbs early this morning. Did you get a look at some of the nearly continuous lightning? These last 2 outbreaks have featured some of the most amazing lightning I’ve ever witnessed. … Flash Flood Watch. The local NWS office has issued a flood watch for much of Minnesota. The ground is saturated from recent rains; another 1-3″ of rain is possible by Wednesday morning — much of that water will almost immediately run off into streams, streets (and some basements). … Another Wild Night. Belle Plain saw a wind gust to 83 mph early this morning. Scott County seemed to get the worst of the straight-line winds, but St. Paul saw a gust to 64 mph.”
At MPR, Bill Enderson writes, “More storms are likely to develop this afternoon in western Minnesota ahead of an advancing cold front. Significant, possibly severe storms should reach eastern Minnesota including the metro area this evening. In fact, forecast models indicate that the nasty action might even hold off until after sunset.”
You did read the two archbishops in this morning’s Strib, yes? Archbishops John Nienstedt and Harry Flynn were there to defend the church against the constant connection between the church’s political agenda and its notorious sex abuse problem. There was this: “The bishops of this country and around the world understand that the sex abuse crisis has undermined the credibility of the Church’s witness and moral authority in the public square. But to replay this misconduct every time the Church raises its voice in an attempt to obfuscate is not an argument, and does no justice to our political discourse. The Catholic Church has served and will continue to serve as a voice of reason in defense of the poor and vulnerable, on behalf of justice and the common good, and in service to universal moral truth.” And who could complain if it did that?
Paul Levy of the Strib is following the case of on cop with serious anger management issues. He reports, “A Minneapolis SWAT team leader was formally charged with third-degree felony assault during a court appearance Tuesday morning in Anoka County. Sgt. David Clifford, 47, of the Minneapolis Police Department, is accused of punching a Ramsey man while off duty at a bar Saturday night. … According to Anoka County Prosecutor Blair Buccione, alcohol was involved in the alleged assault. Buccione said that the offense was “remarkably violent” and that Clifford fled the scene immediately after the alleged assault at Tanner’s Station in Andover. Brooke Bass, an attorney who represented Clifford at his appearance Tuesday, said Clifford had only half of a mixed drink.”
At the PiPress Sarah Horner reports, “Vander Lee hit his head on the concrete and was taken by ambulance to Mercy Hospital, where he was placed on life support and underwent two brain surgeries. He remained in critical condition Tuesday but is now conscious and breathing on his own, according to his brother, Mike Vander Lee. ‘I think his first words (early this morning) were, ‘Can I have some milk,’ Mike Vander Lee said, adding his brother has always been a big milk drinker. ‘So he’s doing better. He’s still in a tough condition but anything is an improvement.’ His positive steps were shadowed some after the family learned Clifford was already out of jail after posting the $15,000 bail, Mike Vander Lee said. ‘It just seems awful lenient to me,’ he said. ‘It seems more like a slap on the hand than anything; makes you wonder if the whole thing is going to be a slap on the hand when my brother is laid up here after two brain surgeries’ “
King Corn is looking to have a pretty good year in Minnesota. Tom Webb of the PiPress writes, “Minnesota’s 2012 corn crop is growing ahead of its usual pace, and far exceeds the bromide that corn should be ‘knee-high by the Fourth of July.’ The growth spurt is especially welcome this year, as Minnesota growers have planted more corn than at any time in history. The U.S. Department of Agriculture said Monday, June 18, that a typical corn plant in Minnesota is now 23 inches tall — so it’s actually above knee-high. That’s double the usual height in mid-June, the USDA said, thanks to a warm spring, early planting and plentiful rains. But the real reason the corn is so high now is that farmers now plant their fields earlier than they did a generation ago, in order to extend the growing season and capture the highest yields. The USDA reported Monday that 82 percent of Minnesota’s corn crop is in good or excellent condition, among the best in the nation.”
Amanda Alvarez of the Mlwaukee Journal-Sentinel says foxes and coyotes have a role in spreading Lyme disease. “Increases in the deer population have been blamed for the explosion of Lyme disease cases in recent years, but changes in the numbers of foxes and coyotes — and what they eat — may actually be responsible, according to a study published Monday. This could have implications for how wildlife is managed, and shed light on the complex ecosystems underlying the rise of Lyme and other tick-borne diseases. Wisconsin saw a 280% jump in Lyme disease cases in the decade from 1997 to 2007, with a total of 2,376 cases statewide just last year. … Foxes have hunting habits that are different from those of coyotes: They will kill many small mammals at once, stashing the kill for later. Coyotes, on the other hand, especially those that have crossbred with wolves, will eat deer, rabbits, or even foxes, and are not efficient predators of small mammals the way foxes are. As coyotes have expanded in numbers and range, the new study suggests, they interfere with the important role served by foxes: to suppress Lyme disease rodent hosts, especially around human habitation.”