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Don Davis, Forum News Service


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Minn. House votes to provide $20 million for heating bills

ST. PAUL - Minnesota legislators opened their 2014 session today battling the polar vortex. Less than an hour after the session started at noon, the House voted 133-0 to provide a $20 million boost to Minnesotans struggling to pay heating costs this winter. Rural lawmakers stood one after another saying their constituents are hurting as temperatures have remained bitterly cold for most of the year.

Analysis: Election-year politics never will be far from Minnesota

ST. PAUL – Politics and legislating always are intertwined, but they could be even more so in the Minnesota Legislature this year.

Dayton works at home after having surgery

ST. PAUL – Hip surgery will crimp Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton’s style as the state Legislature convenes for the year Tuesday.

Variety of topics expected during legislative session

ST. PAUL – The 2014 Minnesota Legislature gathers Tuesday in a short session that should feature financing public works projects, but it take up of a lot of issues.


Legislative session to be short, but full

ST. PAUL – Expect a minimum wage increase, but no tax increase, when Minnesota legislators return to St. Paul for the year at noon Tuesday.


Federal judge tells Minnesota Legislature to act on sex offender treatment program

ST. PAUL – A federal judge is putting pressure on the Minnesota Legislature to change how the state deals with some sex offenders.

Coalition proposes 5 percent fuel sales tax in Minnesota

ST. PAUL – A proposal to increase Minnesota fuel taxes by the equivalent of 15 cents a gallon is similar to a proposal lawmakers may consider after the 2014 legislative session convenes next week, the two legislative transportation finance chairmen said Tuesday.


Lawmaker on offensive on PolyMet issue

Minnesota state Rep. Andrew Falk, D-Murdock, went on the attack when a PolyMet Mining Corp. official appeared in a House committee.

Ag tax relief highlight of Minnesota speaker's rural initiatives

ST. PAUL – Rural Minnesotans’ ears will be burning when state legislators return to the Capitol on Feb. 25 for their 2014 session.

2 Minnesota lawmakers propose fee on oil crude transportation from western ND

ST. PAUL – Improved crude oil safety measures should be funded by charging 1 cent per 100 gallons on all crude transported in Minnesota, the state Legislature's transportation finance chairmen said Wednesday.

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An agreement: Minn. senator not a prom queen

St. Paul - U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar and challenger Kurt Bills agree on little in their campaign, but there is one little area they can agree.


Minnesota election notebook: Supreme Court challengers face uphill climb

ST. PAUL – Challengers to Minnesota Supreme Court justices say their job is tough.

Professor to presidential candidates: All small businesses not alike

St. Paul - The two major presidential candidates say they love small businesses and want to help.


Davis: Obama touts advances in wind power

ST. PAUL – Wind was a major topic on President Barack Obama’s campaign swing through Iowa, and not by chance the White House released a report showing wind power use is growing.


Davis: Candidates’ forum answers get repetitive

REDWOOD FALLS, Minn. – Farmers listening to the two major-party candidates for U.S. Senate may not have understood just where they stood on some issues after a Farmfest forum, but they could not have missed two points: • Republican challenger Kurt Bills is a teacher, a fact he managed to work into nearly every answer during the 90-minute forum. • Democratic U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar works with Senate Republicans on a range of issues, something she squeezed into many answers.


Media probes Pawlenty’s past in anticipation of Romney’s VP choice

ST. PAUL – Tim Pawlenty could get his wish to join a national ticket in the next few days.


Davis: Health care dispute still far from over

ST. PAUL – The Minnesota House minority leader declared that the U.S. Supreme Court settled “once and for all” the federal health care law dispute.


Pawlenty near top of list for vice president, but ...

St. Paul - More and more discussion centers on Tim Pawlenty becoming Mitt Romney’s running mate, but at the same time, Ron Paul supporters are considering derailing traditional Republicans like the former Minnesota governor.


Budget debate becomes fodder for campaign platforms

ST. PAUL – Minnesota lawmakers from both parties signal they plan to use last year’s rough budget debate as foundation for this year’s legislative election campaigns.


Minnesota Political Notebook: Bakk demands open decision on fliers

ST. PAUL - The Senate’s top Democrat does not believe literature some Republicans handed out at the Feb. 7 precinct caucuses cost just $47. And Senate Minority Leader Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook, demands that the Senate Rules Committee take up the matter.