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Walker says he’s open to building wall along Canadian border

Plus: Black Lives Matter marches on the Fair; why Minnesota knows so much about its water quality; Klobuchar talks about Hillary Clinton; and more.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker talks to voters during a campaign stop at Morse Sporting Goods in Hillsborough, New Hampshire.
REUTERS/Brian Snyder

Call me when he demands a wall on Wisconsin’s border with Minnesota. Says Erin Durkin of the New York Daily News, “Secure the border — with Canada. Republican presidential contender Scott Walker said he’d be open to building a wall along the border with our northern neighbor — just like the one Donald Trump wants to keep Mexicans out. … The 5,525-mile-long U.S.-Canada frontier is the longest undefended international border in the world, but only a small percentage of people entering the country illegally come that way.” I say we profile everyone with Ontario plates!

Some smartening has taken place, says Dave Orrick in the PiPress. “The past seven years has seen an explosion in how much Minnesotans know about the quality of their waters. The state’s monitoring program is now seen as among the most comprehensive in the nation, giving policy makers, scientists, land managers, farmers and environmentalists unprecedented insight into which lakes and streams are healthy, which need help and what should be done. Amid the heated politics of ‘big ag’ vs. the environmental lobby and suburban sniping over green lawns, Minnesota’s growing network of monitoring stations and its testing regimen provide scientific data on the levels of aquatic life and pollutants — and where the pollutants are coming from. It’s the result of one of the least-visible programs to emerge from the state’s Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment, which was approved by voters in 2008.”

In the end, not a lot of drama. MPR’s story on the Black Lives Matter Fair protest reports: “The Black Lives Matter demonstration at the State Fair has ended, and the crowd of about 325 marchers has dispersed after a peaceful protest at the fairgrounds. The march began [Saturday] morning at Hamline Park in St. Paul. Demonstrators marched one and a half miles up Snelling Avenue to the fairground. They were escorted by St. Paul Police on bikes and horses. … At one point, the group deviated from their announced route and gathered in front of the gates on Como Avenue. Some protesters attempted to enter the fair, but were stopped by police. After pausing on Como Avenue, the group gathered at the Snelling Avenue entrance for a number of speeches by organizers of Black Lives Matter – St. Paul. Organizers called for body cameras on all city police officers. They also called on the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate the fatal police shooting of Marcus Golden last January.”

I would have bet Utah would have led the list. Tu-Uyen Tran of the Forum News Service writes, “Data from the breached Ashley Madison website —which promises to help clients have affairs — offers a rich, albeit incomplete, portrait of infidelity in Minnesota and North Dakota. An analysis of the massive trove of data, released earlier this month by hackers, shows that more North Dakotans and Minnesotans were paying customers adjusted for population than the nation as a whole.” Given that almost no women were actively participating, you really start thinking we’re pretty pathetic.

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Even if you don’t get a license, you can find a road house and drink like you’ve got one. Sam Cook of the Duluth News Tribune writes, “Drawing a bear license in Minnesota used to be a routine thing. A hunter usually could get a license in the state’s bear lottery every year or every other year. Those days are gone — at least for the foreseeable future. Now, a hunter might have to wait three or four years to draw a bear license. In an effort to rebuild the state’s bear population, currently estimated at 12,000 to 15,000 animals, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources again has been conservative with bear licenses this fall.”

Even though Sean Hannity says the whole thing is a hoax. Erin Golden of the Strib reports: “Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges will follow up a July meeting with the pope on climate change with a second summit on the issue, this time in New York City. The one-day event in late September will occur in conjunction with a lengthier gathering of world leaders at the United Nations. Hodges will join other mayors who previously pledged to work on a set of shared goals on climate change and sustainable development to again discuss the work their cities are doing on the issue.”

But if she does fall. Alana Abramson of ABC News says, “Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar is confident Hillary Clinton’s campaign will avoid a repeat of 2008, when she lost the Democratic presidential nomination to then-Sen. Barack Obama, even as the party’s frontrunner starts to slip in the Iowa polls and faces growing controversy over her private email server. ‘Her campaign is so much different than 2008,’ Klobuchar told Martha Raddatz today on ‘This Week.’ ‘It has energy, it’s organized, it is a grassroots campaign’. … A new Des Moines Register/Bloomberg Politics poll shows Clinton polling at 37 percent in Iowa, losing ground to Bernie Sanders, who is at 30 percent. But Klobuchar, who noted that the caucuses are still several months away, did not seem concerned. ‘This is not a coronation. She [Clinton] expected there would be other candidates in the race,’ Klobuchar said. ‘You can’t just waltz in and win a Democratic primary.’”

What does reading have to do with sugar and fat? Stribber Laurie Hertzel writes, “It has to be said: For one day, there will be more writers at the Minnesota State Fair than you can shake a stick at. Wednesday is Read & Ride Day, which begins with reduced admission for anyone who shows a valid library card, and goes on to feature writers, books, comics, poetry, songwriting and other literary activities. The action will be at Carousel Park (in front of the grandstand), where folks from Rain Taxi Review, SubText Bookstore, and the mystery writers group Sisters in Crime will spend the day along with a host of library-loving volunteers.”

In that vein, Peter Cox of MPR says, “The only bookstore in north Minneapolis will close next month, just 16 months after it opened. Ancestry Books features the work of indigenous authors and writers of color. The store’s Facebook page says the closing is due to a disagreement with the landlord. Verna Wong, who owns the store with her husband, said they hope to continue to host poetry readings, book sales and similar events at other locations.

As for the Fair’s walking, ingesting wounded, a PiPress story says, “Nobody wants to see the inside of the first aid stations at the Minnesota State Fair, so listen up, fairgoers: Drink tons of water and don’t wear flip-flops. Fair health officials agree that many of the 4,000 or so people they see each year could avoid trips to the stations if they’d just follow those simple guidelines. ‘Last year, we saw 3,700 people. In ’13, it was just over 3,000 and in ’12, just over 4,000, and, often, those people are coming in and saying, ‘I have a blister on my foot from walking the 350 acres of the Fairgrounds in flip-flops.’ We hand out a lot of Band-Aids’, says Kent Griffith, a registered nurse and the clinical supervisor for Regions Hospital’s emergency medical services, which has staffed the Fair’s first aid stations for several years … .”

Note the adjective of choice. Chris Tomasson of the PiPress has a story titled, “Vikings’ stadium will trump Cowboys’, Lester Bagley says.” “A Vikings executive says the Dallas Cowboys have the best stadium in the NFL. That is, until U.S. Bank Stadium opens next season. While preparing to build their new stadium, Vikings officials took several close looks at AT&T Stadium, which opened in 2009. That included being given a private tour in 2013 by Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. ‘This is the most incredible stadium in the world, until the Vikings stadium,’ executive vice president of public affairs and stadium development Lester Bagley said after Minnesota’s 28-14 preseason win over Dallas on Saturday night at AT&T Stadium. ‘It’s a great stadium, but ours will top it.’”