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Pawlenty considering another run for governor

Plus: BLM warns people of color about visiting St. Paul; Woodbury man involved in U of M hotel standoff charged with kidnapping; Super Bowl Sunday is gonna be cold; and more.

Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty
REUTERS/Eric Thayer

Mike Emanuel of FoxNews reports, “Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty may be getting back into politics. A longtime adviser to Pawlenty told Fox News that the Republican is actively considering a campaign to reclaim the gubernatorial seat he once held. Pawlenty was governor from 2003 to 2011, but did not seek a third term. ‘Governor Pawlenty is considering running for governor and will be talking with Minnesotans over the coming weeks to assess support and gather advice,’ Brian McClung, adviser and onetime top aide to Pawlenty, told Fox News on Thursday. As he contemplates a candidacy, Pawlenty has scheduled a Feb. 12 meeting with Republican donors and key political players… .”

More on caucus infiltration, or as some call it, participation. MPR’s Riham Feshir reports, “Warnings from GOP legislators that Muslim voters plan to ‘infiltrate’ Republican caucuses appear to have galvanized Muslim efforts to get out and caucus. But Muslim leaders say the rhetoric has extended well beyond the content that the two Republican representatives have shared. … Jeff Johnson, a leading Republican candidate for governor, defended Pugh on the ‘Living Free’ podcast this week. He said putting Republicans on notice that Muslims could infiltrate Republican caucuses is ‘a good thing.’ ‘I think she raises very legitimate issues,’ he said. ‘I think there’s a huge cultural issue that we’re talking about here, not just showing up at caucus. There are some here who are trying to change what America is. And we can’t allow that.’”

ChargedMPR writes: “A Woodbury man who held off police for more than 36 hours at a hotel earlier this week on the University of Minnesota campus has been charged with kidnapping. Lincoln Bowman, 46, also was charged with false imprisonment in the incident that began near midnight Sunday, the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office said Thursday. He is expected to make his first court appearance Friday.”

Be careful out there. Frederick Melo of the PiPress writes, “Black Lives Matter Minnesota is advising black visitors and other people of color to ‘exercise caution’ while visiting St. Paul during Super Bowl LII. ‘The St. Paul Police Department is the deadliest department in the state of Minnesota, killing more people annually than any other department in the state,’ reads the BLM advisory, the first such advisory issued by the group. A spokesman for the St. Paul Police Department declined to comment Thursday. Trahern Crews, a spokesman for Black Lives Matter Minnesota, said the group is not discouraging tourists from visiting St. Paul, but they want greater professional repercussions for officers who use unnecessary force.” 

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Also trending coast-to-coast:  Luke Dormehl of Digital Trends reports, “… we’ve covered some pretty cool vending machines here at Digital Trends. None, however, is quite so cool as a new vending machine that’s just popped up in Minnesota. And we mean that quite literally. Just when you think you’ve heard about every possible vended good, this vending machine sells hand-packed frozen snowballs — ready and waiting to be thrown at a sibling, partner, buddy, or annoying co-worker at your leisure. The vending machine in question was created by marketing agency, Space150, and is intended to bring a little Minnesota chill to visiting Super Bowl fans for $1 a pop.” 

We told you guys it was gonna be cold. At USA Today Doyle Rice says, “With a predicted kickoff temperature of only 3 degrees, Sunday’s Super Bowl in Minneapolis between the Patriots and the Eagles will easily be the coldest ever recorded in the 52-year history of the annual game. … The outdoor temperature in Minneapolis on Sunday will be cold even by early February standards: The normal high for Feb. 4 in the city is 26 degrees, while the normal low is 9 degrees, according to AccuWeather.” 

How will they eat? Stribbers Mary Jo Webster and J. Patrick Coolican write, “The three major Republican candidates for governor raised a combined $464,000 in 2017, according to campaign finance reports released Thursday. Jeff Johnson, the party’s 2014 candidate for governor now seeking another shot, led the way with $260,000 raised and a cash balance at the end of the year of about $180,000. But U.S. Rep. Tim Walz, a DFLer from southern Minnesota’s First Congressional District, raised $1.1 million in his bid to be the next governor. Former St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman and state Rep. Erin Murphy together raised another $937,000. Which means the top three DFLers outraised their GOP counterparts more than four-to-one.”