The AP reports: “Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar said Thursday she’s still considering the nomination of a state Supreme Court Justice to a federal post, echoing comments from fellow Democratic Sen. Al Franken as Republicans accuse the pair of blocking a conservative appointment. President Donald Trump nominated Minnesota Supreme Court Justice David Stras to a vacancy on the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which serves Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Missouri, Nebraska, Iowa and Arkansas. … Klobuchar signaled greater concern about the state’s vacant U.S. Attorney position.”
One of those accusing Franken and Klobuchar of blocking Stras: U.S. Rep Erik Paulsen. In a commentary for the Star Tribune, Paulsen says: “When Minnesota Supreme Court Justice David Stras was nominated for the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, the news was met with enthusiastic support by Minnesotans from across the political spectrum. … The reason for the delay is that Stras’ nomination is being held up by Minnesota’s Democrat U.S. senators — Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken. Neither senator has returned the “blue slip” necessary for the nomination to move forward. … Stalling Stras’ nomination is the latest example of partisan game-playing in Washington. … This is unacceptable.”
Not quite “the full Wisconsin,” but close. An AP story by David Pitt says, “Iowa approved a deal Thursday to give Apple $208 million in state and local tax breaks to build two data storage centers near Des Moines and to create at least 50 jobs — a pact that critics quickly panned. The deal approved by the Iowa Economic Development Authority includes a refund of $19.6 million in state sale taxes for Apple Inc. and a $188 million break on property taxes from Waukee, a booming suburb bordering Des Moines. In addition to the promised 50 jobs, Apple has agreed to buy 2,000 acres of land for the $1.4 billion project, enough to allow for future development, said Debi Durham, the state’s economic development director.”
Corn. Good. Mark Weinraub, writing for Successful Farming says: “Corn in southwestern Minnesota was headed for another bumper harvest, but signs of stress early in the growing season raised concerns about soybean production in the area, scouts on annual tour found on Thursday. … Strong harvests in states like Minnesota were seen as critical to reaching the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s robust production outlook as major growing areas of Iowa and Illinois, the two biggest producers of both crops, suffered through dry conditions during crucial development periods.”
Outbreak out. From the AP: “Minnesota health officials plan to mark the end of the state’s largest measles outbreak in decades. State Health Commissioner Dr. Ed Ehlinger and others plan a news conference Friday to announce the end of the outbreak and to recognize partners in the response. If no new cases of measles linked to the 2017 outbreak are identified before Friday, Minnesota health officials will declare the outbreak over.”
Stribber Karen Zamora reports: “Grounds crew workers at the Crystal Lake Golf Course in Lakeville found a large swastika etched into one of their greens Monday morning as they tended to the course. According to Golf.com, mowers discovered the anti-Semitic symbol ‘gouged into the turf.’ After the incident was reported to police, who made a report on the incident, workers were quick to get rid of the symbol before golfers were able to notice. On Wednesday, an attendant at the pro shop acknowledged the incident to Golf.com and ‘made it clear that this behavior was unwelcome at Crystal Lake.’”
It’s getting bigger. Says Nicole Norfleet of the Strib, “Developers now see something larger than they did last month for the parking lot next to Thrivent Financial’s offices in downtown Minneapolis. Developers want to construct a six-story building that would include 87 housing units and 4,700 square feet of retail on the street level and an adjoining 7 ½-level parking ramp that with underground parking will have enough room for 750 vehicles, city documents showed Thursday.”
OK, so now just 75 percent of your paycheck? MPR’s Martin Moylan says, “Shoppers will find lower prices at Whole Foods stores, including seven in the Twin Cities, starting Monday when Amazon closes on its nearly $14 billion acquisition of the grocery chain. Amazon says there’ll be immediate price cuts on many grocery staples including vegetables, fruit, fish, meat and eggs.” And the lobster sushi rolls?