Moms demand Target stand up to gun toters

As if Target didn’t have enough problems, now it has gun control-minded moms demanding it stand up to … well-armed Texans. Kavita Kumar of the Strib says: “The pictures are provocative: Gun-rights activists in Texas with rifles slung over their shoulders standing in the baby aisle of a Target store, with the company’s trademark red bull’s-eye in the background. Now a gun-control advocacy group is holding up these images to push the Minneapolis-based retailer to prohibit customers from openly carrying guns into all of its stores. Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America began taking to social media on Tuesday to publicize its campaign against openly carried firearms … .”

Al Franken is voting against the president. The Huffington Post story, by Jennifer Bendery says, “Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) said Wednesday that he will oppose President Barack Obama’s beleaguered nominee Michael Boggs for a federal judgeship if he comes up for a vote in the Senate Judiciary Committee. ‘After careful consideration of Judge Michael Boggs, I have decided to vote against his nomination to be a federal judge,’ Franken told The Huffington Post. ‘His record on civil rights, women’s health, and LGBT equality is regrettable, and I was not satisfied with the answers he gave during his confirmation hearing.'”

A report is out on that awful February fire that killed five kids … . Brandt Williams of MPR reports, “A fire in a north Minneapolis building that killed five children in February started in an area where investigators found an unknown melted mass, according to a report released Wednesday by the state fire marshal’s office. … City records show an inspector cited the property for lack of electricity in August and threatened to condemn it. The inspector also noted ‘additional electrical problems.'”

Seven Minnesota legislators have no competition for reelection. The AP reports: “Six Republicans and one Democrat didn’t attract any opponents by Tuesday’s candidate filing deadline. Barring a write-in effort or a shocking turn of events, they’ll be assured new two-year terms that begin in January. The Republicans are Tony Cornish of Vernon Center, Kurt Daudt of Crown, Joe Hoppe of Chaska, Joe McDonald of Delano, Marion O’Neill of Buffalo and Duane Quam of Byron. The unopposed Democrat is Kim Norton of Rochester.”

Uh, huh … and what do you mean by ”normal”? Tim Sherno at KSTP-TV reports: “The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and Hennepin County said Wednesday night that Lake Minnesota has returned to its normal state. The MCPA issued an advisory Sunday recommending no swimming in Lake Minnetonka. The advisory was issued after an emergency release of untreated rainwater from the City of Mound’s sewer system. On Monday, Hennepin County performed regularly scheduled tests of water quality at Minnetonka beaches, and all but two were declared safe according to EPA guidelines … .”

A federal judge may order the release of a sex offender — unconditionally — unless the state comes up with a good reason why he shouldn’t. Amy Forliti of the AP writes: “A federal judge overseeing a lawsuit that claims the Minnesota Sex Offender Program is unconstitutional has ordered the state to show why one man should not be ‘immediately and unconditionally’ released, after experts said there is little evidence to suggest he is a risk. It is believed to be the first time experts have recommended that anyone in the state’s sex offender treatment program be freed … .”

There’s plenty of resistance to “environmental whackos” up north. John Myers of the Duluth News Tribune reports: “St. Louis County commissioners have joined a growing din of local opposition to a possible federal environmental review that would consider the [broader], collective impacts of multiple copper mining projects in the Superior National Forest. … County Commissioner Keith Nelson, who proposed the resolution, said the broader federal review — called a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement — was being quietly pushed by ‘environmental whackos’ who want to stop copper mining at any cost.”

We are super-flippers … . Jim Hammerand at the Business Journal says: “Minnesota’s Wright County is among the nation’s hottest counties for home flipping, according to data from RealtyTrac Inc. Wright County was No. 8 in the nation, with a 45 percent return on investment. The county had 296 single-family home flips between April 2013 and March. The average buying price was $105,058 and the average selling price was $152,563.” And all they did was paint over that godawful wallpaper, right?

Matt Entenza’s move to challenge Auditor Rebecca Otto still has tongues wagging. The AP says: “While the auditor’s office is seldom in the spotlight, it has been a springboard for past politicians. Dayton once held the post, as did former GOP Gov. Arne Carlson. Otto’s two predecessors, Judi Dutcher and Patricia Anderson, tried unsuccessfully to trade up from auditor to governor. Dayton said he won’t criticize Entenza’s decision to challenge Otto in the primary but was bothered by how it transpired.”

Fraud story of the day … . From Dave Chanen of the Strib: “At least $1.2 million in fees that five homeowners and a worship center forked over to luxury homebuilders Keith Waters and Carter Siverson never made it to the subcontractors it was intended for. … Waters, 71, who owned the business, and Siverson, 50, a business partner, are each charged with six counts of felony nonpayment for real estate improvements from 2009 to 2012. Siverson is also charged with felony theft by swindle after admitting to forging about 20 lien waivers to obtain construction and personal funds.”

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