ST PAUL LEGAL LEDGER CAPITOL REPORT Whether to strive for a monumentally historic session or simply a politically safe product — whether to reach for brass rings or get down to a few brass tacks — is the big strategic choice facing Gov. Dayton and the 2013 Legislature. In my last Capitol Report column, I offered some cheap advice, based on 40 years of Legislature-watching, urging that long-term goals (brass rings) be establishe... Read More
ST. PAUL LEGAL LEDGER CAPITOL REPORT A history lesson about the possibilities of productive legislative achievement — drawing from the landmark session of 1973 under brand new DFL legislative majorities and a DFL governor at mid-term — was offered in an article by veteran St. Paul Pioneer Press reporter Bill Salisbury this week. That 1973 session, Salisbury wrote, ”provided consumer and environmental protections, boosted wom... Read More
ST. PAUL LEGAL LEDGER CAPITOL REPORT As the lyrics of that immortal theme song from “Casablanca” remind us, “The fundamental things apply.” And here are some fundamental things when it comes to transportation policy: Strong taxpayer investment in transportation for Minnesota remains a vital condition for both business growth and economic justice. We need improvements to keep freight moving. Low- and middle-income folks... Read More
Economics, the Garden of Eden, and resisting the no-new-taxes snake oil MINNPOST OLIVIA, Minn. — The first chapter of Genesis describes a time before economics. Economics is all about allocating scarce resources to achieve the greatest benefit. The Garden of Eden was all about abundance. Nothing was scarce. Everything needed for a life of happiness was there for the taking. There was no need to go to work. There was no need to make a... Read More
ST. PAUL LEGAL LEDGER CAPITOL REPORT During his first term in office, GOP Gov. Tim Pawlenty pushed an initiative to reduce gasoline consumption and fossil fuel use, but unfortunately national political ambitions sidetracked this effort during his second term. Now that DFLer Mark Dayton is in office, we’re hoping he will put concerns about climate change and a cleaner economy back on the front burner. While the political climate around ... Read More
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