Governor Mark Dayton (D, Minnesota): Look, just go illegally buy the pot, OK? #marijuana

I do not want to get into the merits of medical marijuana legalization: there are people of good will and good heart on both sides of the issue, and there is no easy solution (if there was, we’d have implemented it). But, no matter what our opinions are on the legalization of pot, surely we can all agree that an elected official should not be telling the desperate mothers of cancer patients that they should enlist the services of a pusher?

Parents in support of legalizing medical marijuana say Gov. Mark Dayton urged them to buy pot illegally on Minnesota streets to help their severely sick children.

At an extremely emotional press conference Wednesday, the parents called Dayton’s suggestion offensive. Struggling to hold back tears, the parents accused the governor of using them as political cover, so that he might to look good while opposing the medical marijuana bill they sought.

Continue reading Governor Mark Dayton (D, Minnesota): Look, just go illegally buy the pot, OK? #marijuana

Collin Peterson (D, Minnesota-7) opts not to do this the easy way.

He’s decided that the tide isn’t going to reach him: “Democratic U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson will vie again for the western Minnesota seat he has held for decades.”  I guess that we’ll just have to see if he’s right, huh? – oh, and by the way: unlike 2010 the NRCC doesn’t have entire pages of more low-hanging fruit to grab first before they could work their way down to Peterson. Couple that with the fact that an actual Minnesota state legislator Torrey Westrom will likely be the one running against Peterson this year (a change from the past) and we may have ourselves a race.

Should be a thing, really.

Minnesota’s state #Obamacare exchange wants more money!

HAHAHA God help us all.

MNsure wants to spend an additional $12.5 million this year to continue repairs to its website and call center, officials said Wednesday, as they unveiled plans for a balanced budget in 2015.

Jim Geraghty helpfully notes:

The state has spent about $100 million so far on creating its exchange. State officials had expected MNsure to enroll up to 1.3 million people for insurance by 2016… an increasingly unlikely goal.

Continue reading Minnesota’s state #Obamacare exchange wants more money!

HEEELLLLLOOOOO, Rep. Collin Peterson (D, MN-07)! How’s your fundraising?

Ooh… that bad, huh?

Rep. Collin Peterson (D-Minn.) has posted another weak fundraising quarter — and won’t say whether or not he plans to run.

Peterson raised $165,000 in the last fundraising quarter, a low total for a congressman facing a potentially tough race, and has $358,000 in the bank. Republican outside groups have already been pumping money into ads in his district.

Isn’t that just a shame. Why, it’s almost as much of a shame as being the target of thousands of interested gazes from all across the country, all patiently waiting for a momentary misstep, verbal fumble, loss of temper, or whiff of scandal. Tough life, that. Real tough life. Then again, what choice does Rep. Peterson have? …Besides retiring and going to work as an agricultural industry lobbyist, of course. I understand that there’s money in that for a former Ag Chair. Continue reading HEEELLLLLOOOOO, Rep. Collin Peterson (D, MN-07)! How’s your fundraising?

Add Minnesota to the list of “#obamacare exchanges about to wreck YOUR insurance coverage.”

Time to test Minnesota Nice to destruction, I guess:

…Minnesota’s top insurers have laid out a list of technological problems that they say may keep people who’ve enrolled in a health plan from being covered on Jan. 1.

Insurance carriers selling plans on the state’s insurance marketplace say enrollment information they’re getting from MNsure, is inaccurate and incomplete – and that time is running out to fix these problems.


“At this late date, the health plan companies do not have most of the names or information on individuals who have enrolled through MNsure,” Julie Brunner, executive director of the Minnesota Council of Health Plans wrote in a letter to MNsure Executive Director April Todd-Malmlov and Lucinda Jesson, Minnesota Commissioner of Human Services.

Continue reading Add Minnesota to the list of “#obamacare exchanges about to wreck YOUR insurance coverage.”

Senator Al Franken (D, Minnesota) is in more trouble than the Democrats want to admit.

I do not say, Al Franken will be beaten next year.  I do say, Al Franken can be beaten next year. He is not as invulnerable as apparently everybody else thought that he was:

Franken’s seat currently sits on the ‘watch list’ of D.C. prognosticators Charlie Cook and Larry Sabato – both identifying the race as a ‘likely’ hold for Franken, with the caveat that the race may yet become competitive.

Such caution seems validated in light of a new St. Cloud State University poll that was released on Wednesday, which shows Franken receiving a job approval rating of just 39 percent among his constituents – 18 points behind the state’s senior delegation member Amy Klobuchar at 57 percent.

Fifty-one percent of Gopher State residents rated Franken’s job performance negatively.

That’s a poll of adults – which, contra that article, is not actually great news for Franken.  Adult voters tend, by and large, to skew a bit more Democratic than likely voters*.  Mind you, more polling is needed. Continue reading Senator Al Franken (D, Minnesota) is in more trouble than the Democrats want to admit.

I wonder what Al Franken’s internal polling is telling him.

Presumably not good things.

Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) says he would be open to a brief delay in the individual mandate if the problems with aren’t fixed by the end of the month, according to Minnesota Public Radio.

“I think then we have to consider extending the deadline for the mandate, but let’s hope that doesn’t happen,” Franken told MPR.

Franken has so far been relatively quiet about potential changes to the health-care law, but he now joins a growing group of Senate Democrats in seats that could be targeted by the GOP in 2014 who are speaking up on the issue.

…And as you can see, the Washington Post kind of agrees with me there.  Franken has always been, in my opinion, more brittle than he looks; and while you are certainly welcome to discount my opinion (I am not always right) Franken is certainly showing the signs of somebody who is at least worried. Guess we’ll see.

Via Instapundit.

Minnesota cigarette taxes have a predictable effect: increased sales in North Dakota.

This would be less interesting

If you’re a smoker living in Minnesota near the North Dakota border, you’ve undoubtedly discovered that you can save a lot by driving a little. Since Minnesota’s cigarette tax jumped by around $1.50 a pack on July 1st, tobacco wholesalers have noticed a dramatic drop in sales.

…if it didn’t illustrate the fact that tax enthusiasts simply do not seem to understand that the linked American traits of casual physical mobility and nigh-genetic tendency to go look for loopholes reliably act as a potent counter to busybodies.  I mean, I could have easily told you that a buck-fifty per pack price difference would be enough to encourage people to hop across the state border and buy their smokes there: this sort of thing happens everywhere that’s within half an hour of a state border. Cigarettes, booze, fireworks, gambling… I assume that if another state ever formally legalizes brothels the establishment will end up setting up shop as close to the state line (while being accessible via the interstate) as is humanly possible. Continue reading Minnesota cigarette taxes have a predictable effect: increased sales in North Dakota.

NRCC planning to campaign on #obamacare.

This would be what we call in this business a hint.

Republicans are eyeing congressional swing districts President Barack Obama narrowly won last year for signs that the unpopularity of Obamacare could help them unseat House Democrats in 2014.

Polls conducted by the National Republican Congressional Committee and released to POLITICO show that nearly half of voters in two swing districts Obama carried in 2012 — Minnesota’s 8th and New Hampshire’s 1st — expect the Affordable Care Act to diminish the quality of their health care.

What makes this interesting is that both of those races were not particularly close, but both have had significant churn lately and the incumbents in neither state can hope to get their 2012 numbers; for that matter, both were flipped in the Great 2010 Obamacare Shellacking.  If these seats are vulnerable – and the NRCC polling suggests that they are – then one has to wonder about the races that were particularly close in 2012. Certainly Democratic incumbents are making that calculation right now…

Moe Lane

Jim Graves (D CAND, MN-06) cuts and runs.

:snort: No kidding.

As of today, Jim Graves is going to indefinitely suspend his campaign for Congress from the 6th District.

Translation: He is not running. He is dropping out of politics to concentrate on his family and his business.

This is, of course, Michele Bachmann’s district; and absent Ms. Bachmann from the campaign environment the chances of Jim Graves of getting significant outside support for his doomed candidacy would have been somewhere between zip and nil.  Heck, Graves even admits to it in the article. Brutal truth of it is, a R+8 district is not within reach of the average Democrat this cycle.


Contemplate that, folks.

Moe Lane