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Walz says Minnesota is ready to accept Afghan refugees

Plus: protesters briefly shut down Duluth’s aerial lift bridge; lightning caused Greenwood Fire; 8th Circuit Court of Appeals rules on ketamine injection case; and more.

photo of evacuees from Afghanistan in airport
Evacuees from Afghanistan are seen through a glass window as they sit in a hall upon their arrival at Al Maktoum International Airport (DWC) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates
REUTERS/Rula Rouhana

Minnesota welcome. WCCO reports: “In a letter to President Joe Biden Thursday, Gov. Tim Walz and Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan said Minnesota stands ready to welcome refugee families from Afghanistan. … ‘You may already be aware that in the past Minnesota has stepped forward to help those who are fleeing desperate situations and need a safe place to call home,’ the letter reads. ‘New Minnesotans strengthen our communities and contribute to the social fabric of our state. They are our neighbors.’ … ‘Like people across the globe, Minnesotans have watched the events unfolding in Afghanistan with grief and sadness,’ the letter from Walz and Flanagan reads. ‘We stand ready to work with you and your administration to welcome families as this effort to provide safety and refuge continues.’

Pipeline protest in Duluth. The Duluth News Tribune reports:Protesters halted traffic for approximately 30 minutes Thursday afternoon in Duluth’s Canal Park and occupied the Aerial Lift Bridge as they called for the Biden administration to revoke permits for Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline. … Police officers spoke to protesters, who complied without incident, Duluth Police Department spokesperson Mattie Hjelseth said in a statement Thursday. No arrests were made. … ‘Demonstrating peacefully and showcasing people’s First Amendment is a right to all and our officers are here to ensure safety for everyone,’ Hjelseth said in the statement.”

Shocking. The Star Tribune’s Jana Hollingsworth reports:Lightning is the cause of the Superior National Forest’s Greenwood Fire, officials said Thursday morning. … The rural Lake County fire that began Sunday has grown to more than 6 square miles, expanding on its west side, south of Stone Lake, according to a morning update. … Hot temperatures and winds from the south are expected to make the fire move today, as aircraft, heavy equipment and structure protection crews work to keep the fire east of county Hwy. 2. … No new evacuations have been announced, but could be coming, Forest public information officer Joanna Gilkeson said.”

Ketamine ruling. In his Session/Law newsletter, Kevin Featherly writes:Being given the potent sedative ketamine while semiconscious, as part of an ‘ill-advised’ Hennepin County medical study, does not shock the contemporary conscience, the U.S. 8th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Monday. … The finding is one reason the court affirmed a September 2019 order from Minnesota U.S. District Court Judge Joan Ericksen dismissing the federal civil rights lawsuit, Buckley v. Hennepin County.”

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In other news…

Economic news:Minnesota added 14,500 jobs in July, biggest gain since March” [Star Tribune]

No Heavy Table State Fair food roundup this year:Why We’re Skipping the 2021 Minnesota State Fair” [Heavy Table]