Franken pulls in cash from 50 states, McFadden from 44

Office of the Governor
Sen. Al Franken

I’m not sure there’s any actual news here. But the numbers are impressive. Abby Simons and Glenn Howatt of the Strib say, “[Al] Franken managed to tap donors in all 50 states, with more than a third of his $18 million war chest coming from donors giving more than $200. [Mike] McFadden got donors giving more than that amount in 44 states, with those contributions making up a little more than half of $6.5 million total. … Among Franken’s top contributors were Garrison Keillor, author and host of ‘A Prairie Home Companion,’ and ‘MacGyver’ star Richard Dean Anderson. McFadden’s top contributors were largely in business, including Slumberland CEO Ken Larson and Best Buy founder and chairman emeritus Richard Schulze.”

The GOP response to the DFL’s outrage over the GOP’s “drunk driving” mailer? Tim Pugmire at MPR says: “State GOP officials said the law ‘weakens penalties for people convicted of causing catastrophic damage to other people while driving drunk and lets them back on the road a whole year sooner.’ The [press] release also accused the DFL of using ‘sensational imagery’ and ‘disgusting content’ in mailings against Republican candidates. GOP leaders said the DFL mailings depict a candidate holding a weapon and breaking into a home, a clenched fist in front of a cowering child and a person sharpening a straight razor.” 

Another look at Collin Peterson’s predicament in the Seventh District. Says Steve Karnowski at the AP, “Farm Bureau has had a good working relationship with Westrom as a legislator, but there’s no guarantee he would get a seat on the Agriculture Committee, [president of the Minnesota Farm Bureau Kevin] Paap said. But Peterson would be in a strong position to oversee how the farm bill is implemented, he said. [Torrey] Westrom discounted the significance of losing Peterson’s seniority. He said he’d fight for a seat on the committee and would wield influence as a member of as a member of the majority.”

For The Hill, Cristina Marcos writes, “Peterson is still in a better position than many other Democratic incumbents this cycle, and nonpartisan handicappers give him a slight edge. A KSTP survey from early October found that 50 percent of voters supported Peterson over 41 percent for Westrom. But a mid-October internal poll from Westrom’s campaign found Westrom ahead by 1 point, with 13 percent undecided. [Peterson campaign spokeswoman Allison] Myhre declined to provide internal polling numbers for Peterson’s campaign but said the Westrom survey was ‘certainly not reflective of our polling.’ Still, the margin this year could be much closer than the last election cycle. Even as Romney won 54 percent of the district’s vote, Peterson sailed to re-election with 60 percent.”

When this campaign is all over maybe we can back to the serious task of talking stadiums. Tim Nelson at MPR says, “United Properties says pro soccer is an option for a site it may develop near the Minneapolis Farmers Market — a sign that the Minnesota Vikings may have a serious rival in their bid to bring Major League Soccer to their new home in Downtown East. ‘We are very early in the process,’ a United Properties spokeswoman said. The acknowledgement by the commercial real estate developer comes less than a week after Major League Soccer commissioner Don Garber told the Chicago Tribune that his league hoped to expand to Minneapolis soon.” Well then the commissioner better get his tuckus up here and do some photo-opping with local legislators.

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So whos lying about those MNsure rate hikes? MPR’s Catharine Richert rules … inconclusive. “With advice from the Kaiser Family Foundation, a non-partisan health care think-tank based in Washington that is a leading voice on the nuances of the federal health care law, PoliGraph ran more than 50 scenarios to test the truth of the Dayton administration’s 4.5 percent claim. … The Dayton administration isn’t technically wrong when it says MNsure insurance rates will increase by an average of 4.5 percent between 2014 and 2015. But that’s an overly simplistic take on an extremely complicated set of facts.” Check out MinnPost’s analysis of the MNsure numbers here and here

And on the pro-pot watch: Tim Pugmire (again) says, “The group Minnesotans for Compassionate Care asked five candidates for a commitment to expand the state’s new medical marijuana law next year to include more patients. Republican candidate Jeff Johnson, Hannah Nicollet of the Independence Party, Libertarian Party candidate Chris Holbrook and Chris Wright of the Grassroots Party all signed the pledge. DFL Gov. Mark Dayton did not.”

Sen. Jeff Hayden’s troubles aren’t going away. Alejandra Matos of the Strib reports, “Scrutiny of Sen. Jeff Hayden, DFL-Minneapolis, intensified Thursday after new revelations that he took a trip to New York in 2012 using money from a state-funded organization that serves the city’s low-income residents. Community Action of Minneapolis paid $749 for airfare to New York for Hayden and his wife, Terri, according to records obtained by the Star Tribune. The revelation appears to contradict Hayden’s earlier statements that he paid for all of his own expenses relating to the group. Hayden has a seat on the board, but appointed his wife to serve on his behalf.”

Congratulations Ms. Harvala. Stribber Kim McGuire says, “Most teachers don’t show up for work expecting to be handed $25,000. Neither did Angela Harvala, a fifth-grade teacher in Princeton, Minn. But that’s exactly what happened Thursday. In a surprise ceremony, Harvala was awarded the National Milken Educator Award, a prize often referred to as the ‘Oscars for Teachers.’ With it comes a $25,000 cash prize and acknowledgment that Harvala is one of the best teachers in the nation.”

One way to look at it is that it can only get better from here. Elizabeth Mohr of the PiPress says, “The emotional high of the new Four Firkins’ grand opening in Oakdale was quickly tempered by a calculated burglary. Surveillance video from earlier this month showed three people broke into the craft beer retail store, which had celebrated its grand opening the previous day. … [Owner Jason] Alvey said the three burglars made off with ‘a substantial amount of property,’ but he declined to say exactly what or what it was worth.”                                                                    

Comments (10)

  1. Submitted by E Gamauf on 10/31/2014 - 06:41 am.

    “Pot-Watch” — Seriously?

    I know there’s the new iWatch & several other wearables out there.
    Now we have a “pot-WATCH” too?

    It wasn’t the governor who placed the weird “in front of a doctor” restriction on medical marijuana.

    Signing PLEDGES is hardly worth very much – except to coerce voters with vague promises of actions to be taken in the future & may never be delivered upon.

    Whether its a pledge to support expanding medical marijuana further, or to promise not to run a second time if one disappoints — 6 years later.

  2. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 10/31/2014 - 07:02 am.

    Whopping Mnsure rate hikes must be really killing Democratic candidates. Enablers are crawling out of the woodwork to parse the painful truth.

  3. Submitted by Bill Gleason on 10/31/2014 - 07:37 am.

    Yes, Mr. Swift,

    MNsure rate hikes must really be killing Democratic candidates?

    That is why Governor Dayton and Senator Franken are well ahead of their opponents in the latest polls.

    I’ll be voting for both of them on Tuesday. Hope you vote also – in South Carolina!

  4. Submitted by Pavel Yankovic on 10/31/2014 - 09:39 am.

    Not surprising…

    that Garrison Keillor is Franken’s top contributor. One more reason not to attend or listen to his performances. Does he even live in Minnesota?

    • Submitted by Thomas Swift on 10/31/2014 - 11:28 am.

      The most troubling aspect of Keillor’s profligate spending is the fact that a large chunk of his wealth came from the public coffers.

      He’s another government dependent Working to keep government big enough to continue to support him in the style to which he’s become accustomed!

      • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 10/31/2014 - 01:00 pm.

        Not exactly

        I believe Gary the K’s money comes largely from people willing to pay to see him, or buy his books. MPR gets most of its money from grants and member donations.

        Unless you are somehow implying that all wealth should belong to the public?

  5. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 10/31/2014 - 11:07 am.

    I hope you enjoy your vote for them as much as my 3 sons enjoy voting against them, Bill. Democracy, what a concept!

  6. Submitted by kay smith on 10/31/2014 - 11:08 am.

    Garrison

    and family live in St Paul.

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