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Saturday, February 11, 2006

Minnetonka Town Meeting

I went to the Minnetonka Town Meeting for Sen. Terri Bonoff, Rep. Maria Ruud, Sen. David Haan, and Rep. Ron Abrams. Abrams had a family event, and so was not present at the meeting.

The Stadium boondoggle came up from a number of different questioners - all who seemed strongly opposed to the Twins Stadium plan. Terri Bonoff said here that the papers had exagerated her position in favor of a stadium without a referendum. She said she wants to hear from her constituents about this issue. If you are a constituent of Terri's, I encourage you to write her about this. You can reach her at: sen.terri.bonoff@senate.mn.

Terri also aluded to the stadium boondoggle on her questionaire which says: "Do you support public/private partnerships to construct sports facilities?" This is an extremely biased towards support of subsidizing professional sports stadiums. I would answer yes to this question - and I strongly oppose the Hennepin County Twins stadium plan.

The other questions on Terri's questionaire were much more fairly written.

Sen. Hann gave a rather long winded response which I believe meant that he was opposed to a Hennepin County Stadium Tax without a referendum. Rep. Ruud also seemed to oppose the stadium tax, but she didn't clearly state her position either.

Another questioner, who favored the Bachmann amendment raised the issue of "letting the people vote" on the issue of gay marriage. Sen. Hann said he supported the Bachmann amendment. Terri Bonoff and Maria Ruud both stated that they opposed the amendment, and also stated there were more important things to talk about. Both of them also mentioned that the amendment was "divisive". So I spoke against the amendment - giving the same arguments I've used many times here - that this amendment was marginalizing an unpopular minority for political gain, it went beyond marriage to even potentially undermine private contractual relationships (wills, powers of attorney etc.) and would cause a lawsuit by the University of Minnesota which has domestic partner benefits as part of their benefits. I ended by saying this amendment was "UnAmerican". After I finished my rant, a number of people clapped in response. Many people came up to me after the meeting to thank me for speaking out against the amendment.

After I spoke, Maria Ruud said that she was familiar with me because I both email the entire legislature on a regular basis (true) and that she reads this blog.

After the meeting, I met others at this meeting who said they read Lloydletta. That ofcourse is the highest compliment a blogger can receive. I also met Minnetonka City Manager, John Gunyou who writes excellent opeds to the Star Tribune about the state budget.

I want to congratulate Terri Bonoff, David Haan, and Maria Ruud for conducting a well run town meeting with their constituents.

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