Last Day State of Play During Special Session

Minnesota Report As the legislature prepares to complete it’s work, the House is working on the Tax Bill, making sure it covers the costs of what was spent and needs to be paid for, but interesting the Tax Bill doesn’t actually need to be signed. The...

Will There Be a Bonding Bill? If So, Today is the Day.

  The likelihood of a Capital Investment Bill is a truly up in the air question. On the first-hand Republicans have been quite hostile to Bonding Bills in the odd-number years, because this is off cycle. Secondly, with Sen Tom Bakk (I-03, Cook), former DFL...

06-30-2021 Update to Our Checks & Balances Special Session Scorecard

Minnesota Report As the last day of the Special Session looms, there are key items for consideration including Senate concurrent with the House on the E-12 Education Bill in the Senate, a Tax Bill to line up the revenues and cuts and possibly a Bonding Bill. The...

When Will Cryptocurrency Become a Factor in Campaigns

Minnesota and National Report The existence and mainstreaming of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Dogecoin and Ethereum begs the question when will these alternative financial currencies become the coin of the realm in politics? We ask this question, because unlike...

All Eyes on Minnesota

Minnesota and National Report It is clear, many people will be tuning in to hear the sentence imposed on Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd. As justice is served to Chauvin the three other officers, J Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao will pay close...

06-25-2021 Update to Our Checks & Balances Special Session Scorecard

Minnesota Report As the world’s eye’s turn their attention to Minneapolis and the sentencing of convicted former police officer Derek Chauvin, the Judiciary & Public Safety Bill is still in a holding pattern because the two sides cannot find a suitable...

Is There an Opportunity for a Law & Order Candidate in Minneapolis?

Minnesota Report When supporters of Ranked-Choice Voting (RCV) declare the system produces majority winners they’re grossly misrepresent the truth. A majority victory (50%+1) has happened here in Minnesota less than 42% of the time when a reallocation of votes occurs....

Our Checks & Balances Special Session Scorecard

Minnesota Report We thought a chart or a scorecard was a simple way to follow the current situation at the state legislature. We believe, this session is not anything front-of-mind for many Minnesotans, and the issue of concern might be important to many, they are not...

Budget Bills Stalled in MN House

Minnesota Report Yesterday, the MN House of Representatives was set to consider four Budget Bills, HF0013 Legacy Fund Budget Omnibus author Rep Leon Lillie (DFL-43B, North St Paul), HF0008 Agriculture Budget Omnibus Author Mike Sundin (DFL-11A, Esko), HF0007 Higher...

State of MN Response to US Supreme Court Decision on ACA

Minnesota Report Yesterday, the US Supreme Court on a 7-2 decision dismissed the case CALIFORNIA ET Al. v TEXAS ET Al. brought by a number of Republican State Attorney’s Generals in in opposition to the Affordable Care Act, (ACA) aka Obama Care, saying the plaintiffs...

On Tap at The Legislature

Minnesota Report The House and Senate both met at 12:00 pm yesterday. The House took up the issue of the Governor’s Executive Powers and again the DFL House Majority supported Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN). We understand the Senate is planning to do so at the end of the...

Open Ramsey County Board Seat in 2022 Election

Minnesota Report Ramsey County Commissioner Jim McDonough (DFL) announced on Facebook last week his decision not to seek reelection. Prior, to this announcement Mai Chong Xiong, Legislative Aide to St Paul City Council Member Dai Thao had announce her intention to...

The Meatpacking Cyberattack is Russian Coordination for Trump

National and Minnesota Report If you haven’t heard the lasted Donald J Trump (R) pipe dream, he will be reinstalled as President by August. The latest cyberattack on JBS, a multinational Brazilian owned company, hits America right where it hurts just as grilling...

State of Play on a Universal Budget Agreement.

Minnesota Report Our conversations with different sides on negotiations for completing their work on the State Budget for 2021-2022 is that Higher Education, Commerce, Agriculture and the Legacy are close to being completed and all other committees are far apart. The...

It’s Official St Paul, Will be Primarily Mask Free.

Minnesota Report Today, St Paul Mayor Melvin Carter III made the Capitol City a freer place to live, work and breath. In the following statement he called for an end to the city’s mask mandate. Here is the complete release. Today, Saint Paul Mayor Melvin Carter signed...

Wreath Laying Ceremony at Fort Snelling on Memorial Day

Minnesota Report We attended the 6:30 am wreath laying ceremony at Fort Snelling on Monday. In attendance were Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) and US Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Tina Smith (D-MN). The solemn ceremony was highlighted by a beautiful rendition of two...

One Wrinkle in the Ointment

Minnesota Report The DFL House Majority and its respective committee chair are suffering from a dosage of fear factor and it stems from the failure of the majority to pass State Aid For Emergencies (SAFE) HF0445 back in February. The fact six member of the DFL Caucus...

George Floyd’s Death One Year Later

Minnesota and National Report It is rather pathetic to know that 368 days after the death of George Floyd at the hands of a Minneapolis Police Officer no significant police reform language has passed with the US Congress or the Minnesota Legislature. The failure to...

What the Budget Deal Entails

Minnesota Report   As we understand it the State of Minnesota is still awaiting direction from the US Treasury Department on how it can use the American Rescue Plan Act funds. The question is how the money will be applied by the Office of Management and Budget....

What Moved the Senate Republicans to Cut a Deal?

Minnesota Report Republicans as the anti-government party, may have seemed to cave at the last minute for no apparent reason, but on Sunday night as we were looking at the end of the legislative session we thought if the current situation continued, they put...

Call for a Federal Capital Budget

National and Minnesota Report Since the Senator Tina Smith (D-MN) has experience with Capital Bonding as Lt Governor, she should propose through legislation the formation of a Federal Capital Budget. This is an idea Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-09, CA) has previously...

It’s Plausible for Ranked Choice Voting to be Banned in Minnesota

Minnesota Report Anyone who has read Checks & Balances for the last decade knows our Publisher Shawn Towle is a staunch opponent of Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) and he will be testifying before the State Government Finance Conference Committee on HF1952. The Senate...

Little Public Safety Reform Happens in a Conference Committee

Minnesota Report As people are watching the Conference Committee on S.F. 970 – Omnibus judiciary and public safety finance and policy bill they are seeing a process of going through the motions. It doesn’t make good television and is a series of talking heads many...

Credit for Eight Congressional Districts Goes to Somalis and Hmong

Minnesota Report The fact Minnesota retained it 8 Congressional Districts in 2010 and 2020 is do to the two immigrant populations of Somalis and Hmong who came to our state in the 1970-80’s. If it weren’t for this in migration, we would have lost our federal...

End the Use of Latinex

Minnesota and National Report An interesting position has been brought to our attention from political people who identify as Hispanic, they believe the term Latinex cost Democratic votes in states like Arizona, California, Florida, New Mexico and Texas. The reason...

What Do the Chauvin Verdicts Mean?

Minnesota, and National Report It’s sad that our state is the focal point for so much consternation in this nation. We have now justifiably convicted two police officers for killing people while in uniform, Mohamed Noor and now Derek Chauvin. The key evidence in both...

Passing of a Great Man

Minnesota and National Report The announcement of the death of former Vice-President Walter Fritz Mondale hit hard. Checks & Balances Publisher Shawn Towle had the opportunity to talk with him on numerous occasions especially their shared distain for Ranked Choice...

Call for an End of Cable Broadcast Television Fee

Minnesota Report When something is freely available to the public a private company should not be able to charge you for its use. This is blatantly wrong. The cable television business is doing this by charging nearly $20.00 a month for the use of local television...

In the Ongoing Trump Era, Are There Really Two Sides to Every Coin?

National and Minnesota Report As the influence of Donald J Trump (R) continues to affect the Republican parties at both federal and state levels, as is the case in Minnesota, the push for legislation to tighten voting standards and processes, like Photo ID continue....

Establishing Federal Voting Protections Via Executive Order

National and Minnesota Report President Joe Biden’s (D) Executive Order on Promoting Access to Voting is a direct response to what is happening across the nation as Republican controlled legislative bodies work to suppress future electoral opportunities for...

No Incentive to Change

Minnesota Report At the start of the 2021 legislative session when House Speaker Melissa Hortman (DFL-36B, Brooklyn Park) decried the end result of the 2020 saying, “We won’t let is happen again,” she was being a bit Pollyannish. The want for the same not to occur is...

Is Walz Dialed In?

Minnesota Report Republicans breathed a sense of relief when Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) announce a greatly anticipated turning of the dial on Friday. Granted, they do not think it has gone far enough and continue to weigh-in on stripping the Executive Powers from him,...

Fear, Loathing, and Contempt in the US Senate

National Report In Washington, DC politics, the concept of entitlement comes into play often, but instead of being about what is a just do from the government as a social program, which fiscal conservatives look askance at, a different well used political statement is...

When Will Redistricting Commence? Minneapolis Really Wants to Know.

Minnesota Report When word came through that we will not receive the report on Census data until September of this year, it means something significant to the legislative process for redistricting which will not actually do much substantial without actual numbers....

Legislative Lobbying During COVID

Minnesota Report We spoke we a number of lobbyists on how they are plying their trade during COVID and learned they are able to exercise their established connections with experienced legislators, but it the freshmen they are having troubles connecting with. Zoom...

Trump’s Party is Best Called the Neo-Know Nothing Party

National Report When we learned the average education level of a Trump voter was below a high school diploma we were not surprised. The simplistic message that brought about his election was repetitive and sounded like an infomercial for a product you really didn’t...

Fischbach Defends Taylor Greene on PBS

Minnesota and National Report Last night, newly elected Congresswoman and former Lt Governor and state Senator Michelle Fischbach (R-MN07) seemed to defend Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA14) under the sneaky issue of “precedent.” Fischbach may use this as...

Republicans Show Signs of Affiliation with the Neo-Know Nothing Party

Minnesota Report While Republicans Challenge the Premise of One Minnesota, that we’re all in on boat concept of the 2018 Tim Walz for Governor Campaign, we see signs of a seething hostility that exists between Greater Minnesota and the Twin Cities. This has been...

An Extremely Detailed Map of the 2020 Election Results: Trump v Biden

Minnesota Report ICYMI: The New York Times has an excellent Election Map showing the results by precinct 2016 and 2020. The color scheme shows clearly the changes when you flip back and forth the different areas of the state. Yes, former Vice-President Joe Biden (D)...

In An Attempt Not To Be a Loser, Trump Became One

National Report As Donald J Trump’s (R) second impeachment trial is set to get underway, we reflect back on the rhetoric he espoused in 2016, which was based on the premise of “If We Lose,” in which he had an excuse delivered prior to the...

Governor’s Proposed Budget for 2021-22

Minnesota Report Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) held a press conference to introduce his proposed budget for 2021-22. To view the press conference click here. One feature of the proposal which prior to the event, drew criticism from the Republican side, is the proposed...

Vaccine Rollout was an Unnecessary IT Failure

Minnesota Report When government commenced the idea of bidding out government contracts to the lowest bidder and effectively privatized the system, they play into the Republican mantra of government being inefficient and ineffective. When systems like MNLARS and the...

Major Security Concern at the State Capitol

Minnesota Report In the aftermath of the US Capitol insurrection, while watching a news story about State Capitol Security we witnessed a disturbing picture. The fence surrounding the building is linked together with a set of standard handcuffs. Now, this may seem to...

America Suffers from Truth Decay and Loss of Trust

Minnesota and National Report As Republican officeholders backpedal and try to distance themselves from twice Impeached and the disgraced Donald J Trump (R) they think people suffer from amnesia. The support for Trump was a support for racism, bigotry, anti-Semitism,...

Republicans and Democrats Still Have Dramatic Differences on Elections

Minnesota and National Report When Republicans continue to criticize election procedures they do so with a common thought, which is some wrong happened, they know it but just can’t prove it. When asked about changes to election law, House Speaker Melisa Hortman...

2021 Forum Conversation with the Legislators

Minnesota Report Yesterday, Dana Ferguson hosted the 2021 Forum Conversation with the Legislators. This is an annual event where the Governor and the legislative leaders field questions from the states’ leadership. During, this conversation there was a brightly...

Trump’s Traitorous Terms Are Treasonous

National Report With the onset of the Civil War, in 1861, General Ulysses S Grant said, “There are but two parties now: traitors and patriots. And I want hereafter to be ranked with the latter and, I trust, the stronger party.” When you listen to the phone call from...

All Eyes on Georgia

National Report We haven’t heard of anyone writing a song with this phrase but it seems like an obvious lyric. As we look to the Peach State and reflect upon the November election. The races of US Senators David Perdue (R-GA) and Kelly Loeffler were far different....

2021-2022 Session Commences

Minnesota Report Tomorrow, the MN House and Senate will open the 2021-2022 legislative session, swear-in their new and reelected members have the 2nd legislative session under COVID rules. You can watch the proceedings either on Channel 17 on each body’s website....

MN Senate GOP Releases It’s Committee Information for 2001-22

Minnesota Report Yesterday, Senate Republicans released their list of 2021-22 committee assignments. The list includes both Independent members of their caucus, both Sens Tom Bakk (I-03, Cook) and David Tomassoni (I-06, Chisholm), who have actively participated in...

2020 November Revenue Forecast

Minnesota Report Today, Management and Budget Commissioner Jim Schowalter and Revenue Commissioner Robert Doty along with State Economist Laura Kalambokidis will release the November Forecast to provide some light on the state’s financial picture. Revenues have...

Speaker Hortman’s Announcement of 2021-22 House Committee Chairs

Minnesota Report   Yesterday, the DFL House Caucus announced it list of committee chairs for the forthcoming legislative session. There are a number of 2nd term members who have received a gavel, and a notable placement of a woman of color, Rep Rena Moran...

Hortman’s Announcement on Moran’s Historic Appointment

Minnesota Report Minnesota House Speaker Melissa Hortman announced the appointment of Rep. Rena Moran (DFL – Saint Paul) as the next chair of the House Ways and Means Committee. Rep. Moran expressed gratitude for the opportunity to chair the committee, which has broad...

Senate Majority Leader Announces Positive COVID Test

Minnesota Report Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka (R-09, Nisswa) released the following statement. “Today I received confirmation of my positive covid test. I have been in quarantine since experiencing symptoms last Monday and will remain in quarantine as long as...

Suckers and Losers Post Election

National and Minnesota Report There are reports out of the White House that Donald J Trump (R) is evolving to a position where he is acknowledging his lose and sees the specter of indictments looming on the horizon. He is soliciting money from supporters to assist in...

A Serious Dose of Republican Cynicism

Minnesota Report Yesterday’s selection of Sen David Tomassoni (DFL-06, Chisholm) as the Senate President, the first time a minority member has held the position since partisan elections began in 1972, could have been done for all the right reasons, like reducing the...

Why the Polls Were Wrong

Minnesota and National Report One of the reasons certain voters, read Trump supporters, are legitimate is their distrust of the news media, is because of the polls they continue to report. The reason news organizations do polling is to manufacture a story or a series...

What the Distribution of Votes Looks Like in Ramsey County

Minnesota Report People tracking the 2020 election returns all know the impact of the Absentee Ballots this election. The weight of those votes is not something visible on the Secretary of State’s website, but the information is available from many Counties if...

Potential Affect of Absentee Ballots on Legislative Races Still Pending

Minnesota Report Just as is occurring nationally, here in Minnesota the Absentee Ballot counting has a possible impact on close elections in the legislature. Already in Senate District 14, Aric Putnam (DFL-14, St Cloud) has moved past incumbent Sen Jerry Relph (R-14,...

Pot Parties Only Imperil DFLers

Minnesota Report One factor is clear and DFLers should take notice, as anticipated the Pot Parties only affected DFL candidates even though only the Legal Marijuana Now party fielded any candidates this election. Now, ignorant voices are being raised and calling for...

Questions for Secretary of State Steve Simon on Elections Day

Minnesota Report We had the privilege to interview Secretary of State Steve Simon (DFL). Additionally, we will be on a Zoom Press Conference with him at 4:00 pm and report what we learned then as well. Stay tuned keep coming back through out the night to see what more...

We Were Hacked

Minnesota Report If you have missed us over the last week and a half, its because Checks & Balances was hacked and being used to send out SPAM. It took awhile to address the problem and required us to takedown the site, scrub the information and repost the...

Status of Absentee Ballots (Updated on Election Day)

Minnesota Report The number of Absentee Ballot requests at the start of Election Day,  is nearly three times the amount in 2016. As expected, the largest amount is coming from Hennepin, Ramsey and Dakota Counties. The seven-county metropolitan area accounts for...

Who Voted For The Bonding Bill, and Who Did Not

Minnesota Report If any of the legislator’s who did not vote for the Bonding BIll show up at any of the ribbon cutting ceremonies they should be respectfully asked to leave. Too often, people who don’t vote for something do show up and take the credit for...

Guest Submission: Governor Tim Walz

Minnesota Report Pheasant Hunting: A Tradition Continues in a Time of Uncertainty By Governor Tim Walz   Like many Minnesotans, I grew up pheasant hunting, walking the fields on my family’s farm. It was, and is, a tradition passed from one generation to the next....

Status of Absentee Ballots (Updated 10/16/2020)

Minnesota Report During this pandemic, the number of Absentee Ballot requests, which ended on Tuesday, is up over twice the amount in 2016. As expected, the largest mount is coming from Hennepin, Ramsey and Dakota Counties. The seven-county metropolitan area accounts...

MPR Debate in 1st Congressional District

Minnesota and National Report Today, on MPR Congressman Jim Hagedorn (R-MN08) and DFL Endorsed Candidate Dan Feehan (D-MN08) faced-off. Shortly, after the completion we received the following Fact Checks from the Feehan Campaign and thought they were worth noting. In...

Textualism Does Not Exist

National and Minnesota Report The wordsmithing and creationist approach to interpreting the US Constitution is clearly evident in the Judge Amy Coney Barrett hearing in the US Senate Judiciary hearing. As a acolyte of Justice Antonin Scalia she sets off on the wrong...

Looks Like a Bonding Bill Will Pass

Minnesota Report We spoke with Sen David Senjem (R-25, Rochester) regarding HF1 Omnibus bonding bill and inquired as to the likelihood of a passage during the 5th Special Session. He explained how he had initiated talks two weeks back with both the Senate Leadership...

Status of Absentee Ballots (Updated 10/09/2020)

Minnesota Report During this pandemic, the number of Absentee Ballot requests, which ended yesterday, is up nearly twice the amount in 2016. As expected, the largest mount is coming from Hennepin, Ramsey and Dakota Counties. The seven-county metropolitan area accounts...

Trump’s Guilt by Omission

National and Minnesota Report Three major questions that are not being answered by Donald J Trump (R), the White House or his doctors. When was his last negative test? This is significant because it will clarify if he was contagious on Tuesday Night, during the...

Status of Absentee Ballots

Minnesota Report   During this pandemic, the number of Absentee Ballot requests, which are still ongoing, is up nearly twice the amount in 2016. As expected, the largest mount is coming from Hennepin, Ramsey and Dakota Counties. The seven-county metropolitan area...

Trump Contracts COVID-19

National Report Donald J Trump and first lady Melania, have both contracted COVID-19/Corona virus. They are now quarantined and in isolation. Yesterday morning, news reports starting with Bloomberg, confirmed Presidential advisor Hope Hicks, who had been on Air Force...

Craig Files Suit to Maintain November Election Date

Minnesota and National Report   Today, Congresswoman Angie Craig (D-MN02) a suit to over turn the action by Secretary of State Steve Simon (DFL-MN). Article I of the US Constitution states “The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for Senators and...

All Eyes on RBG (RIP)

National and Minnesota Report At the same moment Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg lies in state as the first woman, and first Jewish woman, to do so we contemplate what brought us to this situation. While generations of women commonly combine their affection...

Trump Fosters QAnon, and We See Signs of It in MN

Minnesota and National Report Attention is being given to Republican candidates who are showing a sympathy to QAnon. This should not be a surprise since Donald J Trump (R) has spoken favorably about the movement because, “They like me very much.”  This radical fringe...

On Wisconsin

Minnesota and Wisconsin Report It’s usually hard for someone from Minnesota to say anything good about Wisconsin, but this year the electoral results of the Badger State are very significant. If Donald J Trump  loses in the state to our east, he will likely lose...

While Siberia Burns Putin Fiddles Around

Minneasota and National Report Yesterday, FBI Director Charles Wray, testified before the House Homeland Security Committee and confirmed the Russian is playing an active role in trying to influence our elections. The Russian Trolls and spoofed websites are continuing...

Feehan Should Push Hagedorn on COVID, Hard

Minnesota and National Report In this election, every race is not about the actual competitors, it’s about Donald J Trump (R) .Since the 1st Congressional District is home to the prestigious Mayo Clinic, and because of the significance of it in the region both...

Ramsey County Has Stealth SUV’s

Minnesota Report On Monday, we were passed by a Ramsey County Sheriff’s SUV painted black, but without the white side panels clearly displaying what it was. Instead the entire vehicle was painted black and the identification was in a slightly lighter variation or...

A Worthy Slimy Addition to Animal Feed

Minnesota Report The impact of climate change is felt broadly throughout our society and the animal industry is a large contributor to methane gas. This significant in our state because of the poultry, bovine, swine, equine, and other ruminants, but there maybe a...

Walz Announces 4th Special Session

Minnesota Report This information was taken from a press release. Yesterday, Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) announced that he will convene the 4th special legislative session on September 11, 2020. He intends to extend the COVID-19 peacetime emergency by another 30 days,...

Senate Confirmations and Rejections

Minnesota Report There is trouble brewing in River City, or in this case, St Paul regarding various Commissioners appointments by Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN). We have had direct conversations with members of the Senate Republican Caucus, and believe Senate Majority...

Trump Becomes Worse than Nixon Again

National and Minnesota Report Bob Woodward may once again have taken down a President with his book Rage. In the early news accounts, he has also released some taped interviews with Donald J Trump (R) which clearly show he had full knowledge of the impact of the...

We Were Solid on Surly

Minnesota Report On Sunday, the employees of Surly Brewing Company held an informational picket against the company stating the shutdown was a response to their unionization effort and not due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We said as much and believe it to be true. Our...

Another MNGOP Hit Piece

Minnesota Report Another distortion piece hit our mailbox yesterday. It again follows the Trump campaign line and put out by the Republican Party of Minnesota. They, like the Trump campaign nationally, are wasting their money trying to target inner city voters to move...

Subscribe to Checks & Balances

Have You Subscribed Yet?   If you find what you are reading to be unique, thoughtful and informative, we ask you to subscribe to Checks & Balances. Since our inception on December 8, 1995, we have regularly scooped the Mainstream Media, we have provided...

Minnesota Falls From 1st to 11th in Census Data Collection

National and Minnesota Report During the COVID-19 stay at home period, Minnesota held a venerable position of 1st place in self-directed Census completions, either by completing the forms online or by mail. With this pace we were likely to retain our eight...

MN Republican Party is Towing the Trump Line

Minnesota Report We received a mailing from the Republican Party of Minnesota sent out the registered voters list, which clearly shows along with the television commercials that have begun running, what the Donald J Trump (R) campaign intends to convey. They are...

Trump and Biden’s Messages

National Report Now that both political conventions have ended, we have two competing scenarios to reflect upon. Donald J Trump (R) poses a Doom & Gloom scenario of a Vice-President Joe Biden (D) Presidency. Trump attempted to invoke a Camelot moment on the White...

Presidential Debate Points

National Report When former Vice-President Joe Biden (D) and Donald J Trump (R) are set to debate and US Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Vice-President Mike Pence (R) have their respective debates. We envision two opportunities for Biden to unsettle Trump and Harris...

Trump Campaign Poll, Yes, We’re on the List

Minnesota & National Report Since, Kanye West successfully has filed as a Presidential candidate, the question will be how much harder will people have to organize in North Minneapolis to turnout the vote? Or will the citizens of the Mill City and other areas be...

The Games Republicans Play

Minnesota Report There is little the Senate Republican Caucus can do in divided government to restrict the Executive Branch, but once again they are preparing to dismantle the Governor Tim Walz (D-MN) administration one person at a time by voting not to confirm his...

MN DNC Vote

National and Minnesota Report At 1:14:57 on this YouTube Channel, the Minnesota Delegation Votes of 60 for former Vice-President Joe Biden (D) and 31 for US Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) were jointly announced last night by US Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and St Paul...

Lesch Is Sole Endorsed DFL House Incumbent Primary Casualty

Minnesota Report It’s likely to have been due to his gender, but of the 40 Primary contests 23 in the House and 17 in the Senate and of the three contested House Primaries with DFL endorsed Incumbents, Rep John Lesch (DFL-66B, St Paul) was the only liability losing to...

Is Minnesota “In Play” in the Presidential Election? Hell No!

Minnesota and National Report We will be the first to say now, and again, if Republicans are so misguided as to believe Minnesota remains in the same place in 2020 as it was in 2016 it is a bet worth taking. Voter turnout fell by 1.7% from 2012, as did overall...

As Frans Heads Out the Door He Provides More Money for the State

Minnesota Report Management and Budget Office Commissioner Myron Frans announced yesterday his departure for a Vice President position at the University of Minnesota. He will be replaced by former MMB Commissioner Jim Schowalter who returns after a stint as CEO of the...

Will a Trump Defeat Decimate the Republican Party?

National and Minnesota Report Stuart Stevens, as a Republican operative, is accepting responsibility for Donald J Trump (R) and is broadcasting the fact, the GOP is steeped in racism and bigotry. Last night, in an interview on the Newshour, based on his recently...

Our Analysis of the 5th Congressional District Primary

National and Minnesota Report At the onset, we will state we believe Congresswoman Ilhan Omar (D-MN05) will prevail because it is hard to unseat an incumbent in a Primary, but if it is to occur it’s most likely in the first reelection contest. In 2016, Omar received...

Back to Kurt Daudt

Minnesota Report When the legislature returns for its third Special Session We expect the rhetoric will not have changed very much and House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt (R-31A, Crown) will continue with his diatribe of seeking to strip Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) of his...

Republican Perspective on the Police Accountability BIll

Minnesota Report As an alternative viewpoint and giving undue credit to Senator Warren Limmer (R-34, Maple Grove), Republicans put out the following in a press release. Amid the continued drama surrounding this year’s legislative session that endured a COVID-19...

Campaign Finance Reports for Contest Legislative Primaries 2020

Minnesota Report The pre-Primary filings for the different parties and caucuses are in and as it is our tradition we compile them for your perusal. House Seats House District 1A (Open) Republican Contest Candidate John Burkel (GOP Endorsed) Beginning Cash 0.00 Total...

Low Expectations for Compromise Deal This Special Session

Minnesota Report With Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) constitutional requirement to call a Special Session in order to reconstitute his executive powers, it only forces a date to reconvene the legislature, but doesn’t ensure any significant pressure to bring about a...

Gazelka Negotiating Directly with Reps Mariani and Moran

Minnesota Report There isn’t much progress to report, but we have learned Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka (R-09, Nisswa) has been in discussion with Rep Carlos Mariani (DFL-65B, St Paul) Chair of the Public Safety and Criminal Justice Reform Policy and Finance...

Gazelka Pre-Special Session II Press Conference

Minnesota Report Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka (R-09, Nisswa) opened his press conference with the following statement, which clearly sets the stage for where his side of the aisle starts “The first thing we will do is vote to remove the Governor’s emergency...

Trump Polling Numbers in Key States Falter

National and Minnesota Report Yesterday, articles in the New York Times and the Washington Post spelled good news for the former Vice-President Joe Biden’s campaign (D). https://www.nytimes.com/2020/06/25/upshot/poll-2020-biden-battlegrounds.html...

Walz Announces COVID-19 Distribution Plan

Minnesota Report Yesterday, Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) put forward his administrations plan for distribution of the latest COVID-19 funds for cities and counties across the state. Because there wasn’t  any agreement between the Senate Republicans and House...

Effects of the Legislative Cooling Off Period

Minnesota Report When Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka (R-09 Nisswa) adjourned Sine Die on Friday, we said he did so because the DFL overreached and asked for too much in their proposals for police accountability, which leaves the matter unresolved. The pressures...

Ellison Takes on Big Oil

National and Minnesota Report On Wednesday, Attorney General Keith Ellison (DFL-MN) has taken a bold move in his pursuit to hold oil companies and the Petroleum Institute accountable for the impact of climate change. He joins other states and localities like...

The Politics of Law Enforcement are Based on Where You Live

Minnesota Report The debate on the State Senate floor yesterday, on a series of bills, SF 1 Sen Warren Limmer  (R-34, Maple Grove) law enforcement training funding, SF 3 Sen Bill Ingebrigsten (R-08, Alexandria) Use of force reporting to the BCA, SF 104 (Limmer) Use of...

Political Party and Caucus Campaign Finance Reports for Q1 2020

Minnesota Report The Q1 filings for the different parties and caucuses are in and as it is our tradition we compile them for your perusal. DFL Party (MN DFL Central Committee) Total Receipts 2,976,063.50 Total Expenditures and Disbursements 1,979,557.88 Ending Cash...

Three Senate DFLers Support Ending Governor Walz Peacetime Emergency

Minnesota Report Today, both the House and Senate have taken up a Concurrent Resolution SC1 to end Governor Ttim Walz’s (DFL-MN)  Peacetime Emergency Order. The issue is being debated on the floor of the House at this moment and it passed the senate on a 38-29...

Columbus Replaced

Minnesota Report We went to the site of the Christopher Columbus statue and saw an individual squatting in his place. Doug Schiedel sat “Indian Style” atop the pedestal where Columbus once stood and was allowed to stay there by Capitol Police. He was asked by a State...

2020 Special Session Set to Convene

Minnesota Report Yesterday, Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) put forward his expectations for the Special Session tomorrow. He has extended the peacetime emergency, which fosters the need for a Special Session call, but also a number of issues remain unresolved with the...

Columbus Pulled Down from His Position

Minnesota Report Change is coming. The statute of Christopher Columbus on the northeast corner of the Capitol Complex across from the Judiciary Center always seemed oddly placed. Granted, when placed, St Paul was highly influenced by the Roman Catholic Church and St...

Does Trump Even Know What Antifa Is?

National Report The outrage Donald J Trump (R), the self-declared Stable Genius, started when he twittered away about Martin Gugino being a “setup,” after the 75-year-old peace protester was shoved backwards by two Buffalo police officers and his head struck the...

Riotous Trifecta: Anarchists, White Supremacists, and Local Gangs

Minnesota Report When early reports from Mayor Melvin Carter III (DFL-St Paul) stated the protesters and rioters arrested were mainly from out-of-town it seemed like a narrative was being set, which was later proven false.Our discussions with anyone associated with...

Democrats are Providing the Republican Definitive

Minnesota Report With cries to defund or dismantle the police, and declarations to do so, especially when coming from the Minneapolis City Council, Democrats are giving energy to Donald J Trump (R) and the Republicans. Stoking fears in surrounding communities of...

The Attack Poodle Bows Out

Minnesota Report Sen Linda Runbeck (R-53, Circle Pines) left the legislature the first time to run for Congress against Rep Betty McCollum (DFL-55A, North St Paul) and lost by 18-points with 30.89% to McCollum’s 48.04% and it could have been greater since former...

One Week Ago, Today, George Floyd Died

 Minnesota Report George Floyd died a week ago today at 9:25 pm. He was killed by Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin kneeling on his neck, and held down while handcuffed by, while held to the ground by Thomas Lane and J Alexander Kueng, while Tou Thao, Chauvin’s...

Day Six: Riots Appear Abated

Minnesota Report Today, Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) announced a different time for the curfew from 10:00 pm tonight to 4 am tomorrow. This will allow for people to gather again at the site of George Floyd’s death, which occurred at 9:25 pm. The fact only one fire was...

South Minneapolis Ablaze

Minnesota Report  The intersection of East Lake Street and Minnehaha Avenue is the outer edge of the Longfellow neighborhood, and is now a war zone in the aftermath of the suffocation killing of George Floyd by Police Officer Derek Chauvin who knelt on his neck while...

Walz Announces COVID-19 Response #4

Minnesota Report In spite of not having fourteen days of a consistent downward trend on the number of cases, currently there have been 18,200 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 809 deaths, nor do we have a process for contract tracing in place, yesterday Governor Tim Walz...

Republicans Irked by State Employee Raises Going Forward

Minnesota Report When the Senate Republicans passed the State Employee Contract, they did so with an amendment to only agree to the increase or the first year of the contract, but the interpretation of Office of Management and Budget Commissioner Myron Frans is they...

What the House Retiree Districts Look Like Numerically

Minnesota Report We have looked at the thirteen house districts in which the incumbent is retiring and have seen an interesting picture. There are nine DFLers, two are freshmen, and four Republicans. Each of the Republican seats are in rural districts and are...

Walz Announces Minnesota Supreme Court Appointment

Minnesota Report Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) announces his first appointment to the Minnesota Supreme Court Judge Gordon Moore as the replacement for retiring Justice David Lillehaug. Judge Gordon Moore currently serves as a judge in the Fifth Judicial District...

Walz Set to Announce Future of Peacetime State of Emergency

Minnesota Politics Tonight, much of Minnesota is likely to tune into listen what Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) intends regarding the peacetime state of emergency. At 6:00 pm, he is expected to extend it for the third and final time, without legislative approval, but with...

Three Incumbent DFLers Fail to Secure Endorsement

Minnesota Politics When people lose a DFL endorsement fight they often make claims against the process, shenanigans, or inappropriate actions by their opponents to propel them into a primary contest, especially incumbents. On Friday, Senate Assistant Majority Leader...

Quotes from the 2020 Deficit Communications

Minnesota Report In his release following the $2.5 billion deficit through 2021 announcement the following is attributed to Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN). “Today’s budget outlook confirms what we suspected: COVID-19 will badly damage Minnesota’s economy.” “As I said...

A Restart for Elective Surgeries

Minnesota Report Here is information on the release for restart of elective surgeries. Governor Tim Walz today signed Executive Order 20-51, providing a roadmap for safely restarting elective surgeries. Starting next week, doctors, dentists, and veterinarians who...

COVID Terms of Art

Minnesota Report In politics, it is frequently the case where some word, phrase or acronym is created to short handedly refer to a department, program or event. Sen Mary Kiffmeyer (R-30, Big Lake) has taken to calling different times BC, AC and MC. BC=before COVID,...

MN Budget 2020 Now Projected Deficit

Minnesota Report The following was posted on the MN Management & Budget website. May Interim Budget Projection Minnesota’s budget and economic outlook has significantly worsened since the coronavirus pandemic. A deficit of $2.426 billion is now projected for the...

Walz Scheduled to Announce Next Steps Forward

Minnesota Report Today, at 2:00 pm Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) will announce his decisions regarding the extension or ending of the stay-at-home order. Walz has announced the Stay-at-Home order is extended and bars and restaurants will remain closed until May18th,...

Trump’s Aggressive Email Campaign

National and Minnesota Report If this is a sign of things to come, the Donald J Trump (R) reelection campaign will clearly cultivate its supporters and alienate its detractors. The volume of emails we have seen in the course of two weeks is significant and they are...

Peterson Taking an Active Role

National and Minnesota Politics Congressman Collin Peterson (D-MN07) Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee is not sitting idly by during the COVID-19 Pandemic. He joined Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) and Congressman Jim Hagedorn (R-MN01) at the JBS Pork Plant in...

Republican Questions Mounting About State Employment Contracts

Minnesota Report The beginning of a pushback from Senate Republicans on things remaining as is, is fulmenting in regards to state employees. In a release on Thursday, Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka  (R-09, Nisswa) put out the following statement. Today Senate...

Omar is Keeping an Eye on Her Country of Origin

National and Minnesota Report On Saturday, Congresswoman Ilhan Omar (DFL-MN05) put out a press release about intimidations and suppression activities by the Somali National Intelligence and Security Agency against press entities in Somalia. Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN)...

What’s Old is New Again with Advertising in Local Media

National and Minnesota Report In 1942, when the nation’s manufacturing industry was focused on production for the war effort the Advertising Council, Inc was formed then renamed The War Advertising Council, Inc and it initially produced advertising on enlistment into...

Results of Trump’s Provision of Hydroxychloroquine, Veterans Deaths

National Report This is unconscionable, the Department of Veteran Affairs has released preliminary results of it trial of Hydroxychloroquine and Erythromycin on patients in the VA and it shows a higher mortality rate. Outcomes of hydroxychloroquine usage in United...

Minnesota Moonshot

Minnesota Report One way to wade out of this COVID-19 pandemic is to utilize our domestic resources. Yesterday, Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) announced a partnership between the University of Minnesota, the Mayo Clinic and the Minnesota Department of Health on COVID-19...

Schools to Remain Closed for the Year

Minnesota Report By all appearances Minnesota schools will not be reopened for the 2020 school year.  Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) is expected to announce this later today. This will extend his Stay at Home Order past May 4th and provide additional anxiety to...

During the COVID-19 Pandemic Don’t Forget About Veterans

Minnesota Report Prior to the start of the stay at home order, Checks & Balances Publisher Shawn Towle was set to have a face-to-face meeting, which became a conference call and then a cancellation with MN Housing and Finance Commissioner Jennifer Leimaile Ho.The...

Federal Candidate Filings and Leadership PACS (MN)

Federal Report The reports for federal candidates show an interesting picture in Q1 of the election cycle. We have list all candidates who have filed. US Senate name office_full party_full state receipts disbursements cash_on_hand_end_period debts_owed_by_committee...

The Return of a Ranked Choice Voting Ban

Minnesota Report We spoke with State Government Finance and Policy and Elections Committee Chair Mary Kiffmeyer (R-30, Big Lake) and learned she will be revisiting Sen Mark Koran’s (R-32, North Branch) bill SF3385 Ranked-choice voting local government adoption...

Expectations on Budget Forecast, Prior to Announcement

Minnesota Report We are expecting a February Budget Forecast to be largely inline with the November Forecast. The quarterly report released by Minnesota Management & Budget Office showed a slight improvement on receipts, but some corporate figures are expected in...

House Votes on Insulin and Presidential Primary

Minnesota Report Last night, the Minnesota House passed two bills, HF3100 establishing an Emergency Insulin program 75-52 and HF3068 regulating the Presidential Primary results 72-55. Both set up a conflict with the Senate. In regards to Insulin the DFL wants the...

Expressing the Need for Two Separate Figures in Budget Forecasting

Minnesota Report Since 2002, under the Administration of Governor Jesse Ventura (I-MN) Budget Forecasts have not included inflation and have largely been a misrepresentations of the true cost of of Minnesota government. In her bill, HF150 Rep Jennifer...

Will Minnesota Save the Sail?

Minnesota Report The US Navy saw fit to name only one of its 33 Los Angeles-class submarines after two cities when commissioning the USS Minneapolis-St Paul (SSN-708). Submarines get attention. This one is a unique symbol and should be saved. But “The Mighty MSP” is...

St Paul Delegation Welcome Back Legislators Reception

Minnesota Report On Wednesday February 26th, from 5-7:30 pm the St Paul Legislative delegation is hosting a reception in the Stadium Club at Allianz Field for the rest of the legislature and the political community. This is one of the premier social events during the...

Only the Two Women Leaders Have Home Field Contests on Super Tuesday

National and Minnesota Report When the 14 states hold their presidential primaries, only Minnesota and Massachusetts will have a favorite daughter in the mix. US Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) will be under dual scrutiny both nationally and...

Surveying the Bloomberg Campaign Post the Nevada Debate

Minnesota and National Report In spite of not being a candidate for consideration in tomorrow’s caucuses in Nevada Michael Bloomberg (D-NY) attended the debate moderated by NBC Nightly News and Dateline NBC anchor Lester Holt, Meet the Press moderator and NBC News...

Klobuchar Already Defeated Trump Cronies

 National Report In 1994, when Amy Klobuchar (DFL) ran for Hennepin County Attorney against Sheryl Ramstad Hvass (R) for Hennepin County Attorney she came up against the likes of Roger Stone and Paul Manafort who were consultants for the sister of Congressman Jim...

Need for Light Rail Conductors

Minnesota Report The call for Ambassadors on the Light Rail lines seems weak and a term that conveys niceties rather than someone in charge. We suggest implementing Conductors rather than glad-handing Ambassadors. A Conductor is defined as “a person in charge of a...

Significant Staff Changes in the MN Legislature

Minnesota Report The return of John Pollard to the DFL Senate as the Minority Chief of Staff is not to only change in staffing throughout the legislature, there are numerous staff changes in both bodies and on both sides of the aisle. An update to contact lists and...

Administration Joins the PolyMet Appeal Call

Minnesota Report Yesterday, the DNR put out the following press release DNR seeks review of Court of Appeals decision on PolyMet permits Today the Department of Natural Resources submitted a petition to the Minnesota Supreme Court seeking review of the Minnesota Court...

Klobuchar Gets Third Ticket Out of New Hampshire

National Report US Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) finished a strong third with 19.8% of the vote, last night in the New Hampshire Primary coming 17,361 votes behind first place finisher US Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT).  He surge is attributed to her performance in last...

Draz Jabs Daudt During Sine Die Debate

Minnesota Report Normally, the opening of the legislative session is mostly ceremonial and functional. New bills are given their first reading, in this case two new legislators, Rep-elects Sydney Jordan (DFL-60B, Minneapolis) and Paul Novotny (R-30A, Elk River) were...

50 Year Anniversary for the Legislative Reference Library

Minnesota Report One of the finest and most helpful institutions is the Legislative Reference Library and it will be celebrating is 50th year of existence tomorrow February 13, 2020. The will be cake and light refreshments from 1:30-3:00 pm. We spend a great deal of...

A Talk with Bakk

Minnesota Report After the Jobs for Minnesotans press conference we had the opportunity to speak with former Minority Leader Tom Bakk (DFL-03 Cook). In our conversation we learned the following, no he is not changing parties and yes he will be running for reelection....

PolyMet Support is Diverse

Minnesota Report We attended a press conference hosted by Jobs for Minnesotans and witnessed a coalition of the Chamber of Commerce, Organized Labor and legislative Leadership on both sides of the aisle and in both legislative bodies. The group came together to...

Forum Forum 2020

Minnesota Report It might sound redundant, but it’s not. Prior to the start of each legislative session, the Forum News Service hosted a forum of the governor and legislative leadership. In this instance, Dana Ferguson of the Frum News Service moderated and it...

Two Special Elections and the Results, Stand Pat

Minnesota Report Yesterday, two Special Elections were held to fill the vacancies created by the death of Rep Diane Loeffler (DFL-60A, Minneapolis) and the early retirement of Rep Nick Zerwas (R-30A, Elk River). In Minneapolis, Sydney Jordan (DFL-60A, Minneapolis)...

Still Waiting for Iowa

Minnesota Report Two days after the Iowa Caucuses we are still waiting for the final results. As of now, there are still only 71% of the precincts reported. The most up-to-date site is from the IA Democratic Party https://results.thecaucuses.org/ and other entities...

McCollum Commercials During the IA Caucus Coverage

Minnesota Report On Tuesday, while watching the IA Caucus coverage were surprised to see a number of commercials run by Congresswoman Betty McCollum (DFL-MN04) Chair of the Interior-Environment Subcommittee of Appropriations. The ads were in the tradition of her...

Defense of the Caucus System

National Report (IA) The lack of the Iowa Caucus results is not due to the Caucus System but rather the reporting method. As we have now learned, the problem was with the app used to report the results developed by Shadow Inc, a company founded by Gerard...

After Bakk Ouster Republicans Make Range Appeal

Republicans have just posted a statement from Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka (R-09, Nisswa) in response to the defeat of Sen Tom Bakk (DFL-03, Cook) by new Senate Minority Leader Susan Kent (DFL-53, Woodbury)....

The Faces of the DFL Leadership in the 2020 Election

Minnesota Report US Senator Tina Smith (D-MN)                               House Speaker Melissa Hortman                                  Senate Minority Leader Susan Kent     There will be a distinct visual change on the DFL side in 2020. US Senator Tina Smith...

Political Party and Caucus Campaign Finance Reports for 2019

Minnesota Report The annual filings for the different parties and caucuses were due last week and as it is our tradition we compile them for your perusal. DFL Party (MN DFL Central Committee) Total Receipts 3,555,902.52 Total Expenditures and Disbursements...

The Imperial Presidency

National Politics With the vote pending on the calling of witnesses in the Impeachment Trial of Donald J Trump (R), and an expectation the call will fail due to the Republican Majority control we believe this constitutes the codification of the Imperial Presidency as...

Know Thy Enemy

National Politics The US v Them mentality in US Politics has been labeled as Tribalism. The concept of there being a Blue Brain and a Red Brain was first voiced in a 1994 survey in England, and later it was documented in a study in 1997. It was again the focus of...

DFL Senate Leadership Contest Tomorrow

Minnesota Politics On Saturday, the DFL Senate Minority Caucus will meet and discuss whether or not they will hold a vote on their leadership moving now, or wait for the normal vote after the election. The contest is a challenge by current Assistant Minority Leader...

Do Republicans Endorse Trump’s Actions?

National Politics The religious statement one often hears when someone thought to be a religious person is found to have committed some transgression of the law, is “Love the sinner, but not the sin.” This seems to be a constant task for Republicans regarding Donald J...

Klobuchar in Iowa

National Politics In spite of being stuck in Washington, DC due to the impeachment trial, while the non-Senators campaign across Iowa, US Senator Amy Klobuchar’s (D-MN) Presidential Campaign did well on the political talk show circuit on Sunday and also received...

The Value of Voter Data and the Weaponization of Party Identification

Minnesota Report Until the rise of Donald J Trump (R) the fear of others knowing how one votes was a minor consideration. But now, when we regularly hear the vitriol and lies spouted from the podium of the President the fear factor becomes far more real. First off,...

Trump’s Tribe

National Report Much has been discussed about the devolution into tribalism in the American Electorate. In 2003, http://tribe.net was born and it was an attempt to gather together likeminded people with similar interests. This form of tribalism in the social media...

Republican 2020 Vision, Hindsight or Foresight

Minnesota Report Yesterday’s, press conference by the Republican Senate majority discussed much of what they had done in the past legislative session and more what they would like to do during the 2020 session. The issues and initiatives advanced by Senate Majority...

Tackling the Transportation Funding Problem

Minnesota Report Face it, roads, bridges, transit and all forms of transportation fixes and improvements all cost significant amounts of money. Republicans are calling for the use of some cash for projects rather than creating long-term obligations through state...

Klobuchar’s Presidential Fundraising Numbers

National Elections Early reports about US Senator Amy Klobuchar’s (D-MN) Presidential fundraising numbers at $11.4 million. We thought these warranted a bit of scrutiny to see how well she faired from within Minnesota compared to the rest of the nation. Overall, her...

MN Congressional Districts: Will there be Seven or Eight?

Minnesota Report With 2020 being a Census Year, and at the forefront of a “Stub Election” our term for the two-year state senate elections at the end of the decade, due to redistricting Minnesota has the chance to determine its own political fate. Currently, all that...

Passing of a Behind the Scenes Moveable Force in the SOS

Minnesota Report We attended the visitation for former Deputy Secretary of State Elaine (Voldness) Voss last evening. Today, at 11:00 AM services are taking place at Peace Lutheran Church in Coon Rapids. We had the opportunity to listen to great stories from Former...

Growe and Strudevant Scribing a Book

Minnesota Report Former Secretary of State Joan Anderson Growe (DFL-MN) 1975-1999, the second woman to hold the position, and former Star Tribune Columnist Lori Strudevant are crafting a book for the Minnesota Historical Society due out in August. We are expecting an...

Items to Consider Regarding DFL Senate Leadership Discussion

Minnesota Report    VS    The DFL Senate Caucus had a meeting set for tomorrow, which was postponed by Senate Minority Leader Tom Bakk (DFL-03, Cook) after an email announcement by Senate Assistant Minority Leader Susan Kent (DFL-53, Woodbury) of her intent to...

Revenue Forecast Shows a Significant Surplus

Minnesota Report The Office of Management and Budget released the Revenue Forecast today showing a $1.332 billion surplus. When the legislature reconvenes on February 11th, they will wait for the February Forecast to set their legislative priorities....

Exposing a Fraud

Minnesota & National Report The second week of Impeachment Hearings will continue to dominate our television stations, resulting in many conversations amongst pundits and continue to expose the political divides in our society. The series of testimonies from the...

The Truth Behind Ranked Choice Voting

Minnesota Report Now that the 2019 elections are over in St Paul, we sought information from interim Elections Director David Triplett on what actually transpired and received the following answers to our questions. Additionally, we have a spreadsheet of all of the...

Protecting Our Water Resource

Minnesota Report We were shocked to hear to the boldness of a proposal to ship our water out-of-the state to western states. This resource, a climate change continues to rise, will make water an ever-increasingly demanded commodity, but the exploitation and exporting...

Ward Six Interviews (Thao)

Minnesota Report C&B: All right, I’m interviewing Terry Thao for Ward 6 and Terry, can you tell me when did you move to St. Paul? Thao: Um, I was seven years old, um, so it was ’87, ‘86 with my family. We were part of the secondary migration of the Hmong...

DeMay’s Name on the Ballot

Minnesota Report Jim DeMay will be watching election returns tomorrow night and watching for his own name in the tabulation. The Pfizer Lobbyist is a candidate for School Board in ISD #621 in the communities of Moundsview and North Oaks. DeMay is a known Democrat...

Peterson Votes Against Impeachment

Rep Collin Peterson (D-07MN) was one of two votes against the impeachment of Donald J Trump. This maintains his consistency on the issue since he has been vocally against the position since the conversation began. Because his district is very conservative this makes...

Walz Statewide Tour is Challenging Republican Philosophy

Minnesota Report When Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) began his campaign for governor he advanced the theme of One Minnesota. Now, as a concept this is a worthy effort, it presupposes a similar theme of the University of Minnesota football team’s Row the Boat idea of the...

University Regents Selection Under a Colored Prism

Minnesota Report Today, at noon, both houses of the legislature will meet in joint session for selection of four the University of Minnesota Regents. The positions are the Student Regent, 5th Congressional District Regent, and two At-Large Regents. Since the positions...

There Will Be a Joint Convention on U of MN Regents

Minnesota Report Today, on the House floor House Majority Leader Ryan Winkler (DFL-46A, Golden Valley) announced there will be a joint convention between the House and Senate for the selection of University of Minnesota Regents. The selection will include the student...

Sanders, Buttigieg and Harris All Miss the Point

National Report During the CNN town hall, when US Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) stated his support for a universal reenfranchisement of the voting rights for felons including the Boston Marathon Bombers (Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and Tamerlan Tsarnaev) and sexual offenders...

There is An Alternative to the Health Care Provider Tax; A Sugar Tax

Minnesota Report As we listen to the debate of whether the state should continue the Health Care Providers Tax, we keep hearing the argument because there is nothing else. This is not true. We have discussed the idea of a tax on sugar on high fructose-based products....

Need to Change Minnesota Crop Production

Minnesota Report Because of the tariffs imposed on China by Donald J Trump (R), Minnesota needs to change is Agricultural mix. The mono-cultural growing of corn and beans (soybeans) will not be as productive since China was the largest consumer of soybeans and because...

DW High

Minnesota Report Yesterday, during the Responsible on Cannabis press conference we coined a new term DW High. We asked the following questions of Rep Carlos Mariani Rosa (DFL-65A, St Paul). Also present were Health and Human Services Chair Rena Moran DFL-65B, St...

Rep Elkins Don’t Be Bamboozled

When we saw a picture of Rep Steve Elkins (DFL-49B, Bloomington) sitting next to Jeanne Massey from FairVoteMN introducing HF983, we had our normal response, “What is he doing?” We know Elkins is a freshman and that may account for his naivete, but as a resident of...

Have You Subscribed Yet?

If you are reading Checks & Balances, it is clear you find value in it and so we ask for your support. This endeavor started in 1995, has remained at the forefront of political reporting, regularly scooping other media sources and providing an insider’s...

First Paid Political Advertisement Ran Here 21 Years Ago

There were a number of firsts that occurred in the 1998 Governor’s race besides the My Three Sons Primary and the election of third-party candidate Jesse Ventura, In 1997, the Ted Mondale for Governor campaign took out, what is known as the First Paid Political...

Attorney General and the Big Unasked Questions

We have said time-after-time this election will be largely based on support/opposition to Donald J Trump and this will be most evident in the Attorney General’s race. We are hearing reports from homes of traditional DFLers that women are having problems voting for...

NPR Censors Opposition Comments on RCV

The NPR show 1A ran a program on Ranked Choice Voting today, and Checks & Balances Publisher Shawn Towle sought a spot on the panel. When called back by producer Andi McDaniel he was informed the panel was full but could submit a comment through the voicemail...