As a dozen reporters waited at the front door to Gov. Mark Dayton’s Reception Room, legislative leaders slipped out the back door about 45 minutes after their first budget-negotiating meeting of the day.
Mike Brodkorb, Senate Republican communications director, apologized to reporters for the back-door departure of the leaders, saying that in the future, they would use the main entrance so that reporters at least would know whether negotiating meetings were going on.
The next meeting, Brodkorb said, was scheduled to begin at 12:30 p.m.
Brodkorb, it should be noted, did not break the “cone of silence’’ surrounding the talks that appear to be headed nowhere.
All parties — legislative leaders and the governor — apparently wanted some time to study shutdown orders issued this morning by Ramsey County District Court Judge Kathleen Gearin.
Katharine Tinucci, the governor’s spokeswoman, told reporters that the governor would comment on the court orders after he’d had time to review them.
At about this time, a family stepped into the scene.
“We’re just tourists! Just tourists!’’ a woman said as she saw reporters and camera operators all look her family’s way.