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Saturday, February 11, 2006

Campaign Finance Reports for Anti-gay Groups

Minnesotans for Marriage.

Very useful information in this report.

Minnesota Citizens in Defense of Marriage

Kudos to the AP reporters who looked at these reporters and reported on the large donors.

The other name I noticed on these reports is Bill Wenmark - who is on the Minnetonka School Board. He is another one who pushes for Intelligent Design Creationism, and I expect that he will be defeated during the next school board election.

My Letter to the Strib Gets Published

Spotty points this out.

Today's Star Tribune yields a rare double - Spotty. The second 0ne is awarded to Spot's blogger buddy, Eva Young (Dump Michele Bachmann and Lloydletta's Nooz and Comments) for this letter:

Tacky Tinklenberg

Sixth District House candidate Elwyn Tinklenberg's theatrics during Patty Wetterling's press conference announcing she would be a candidate for that seat as well were tacky to the extreme and the marks of a desperate campaign (Star Tribune, Feb. 4).

Going to an opposing candidate's press conference and demanding to use the microphone is tacky. A confident candidate would have welcomed Wetterling into the race and said he was looking forward to debating the issues.

I'm glad they published my letter.

Pollytick in Minnesota Has Another Perspective on Rural Bachmann Amendment Rallies

. A commenter over there mentioned that DFLer Mary Ellen Otremba was a speaker at the Willmar Alexandria rally.

The out state newspapers are running ads and stories regarding at least two anti-gay marriage rallies in Western Minnesota. Apparently the GOP road show will make stops in Alexandria at 10:00 AM and Willmar at 4:00 PM (both on Saturday the 11th of Feb).

Expected to be featured speakers at both events will be: "US Senate wanna be" Mark Kennedy, "Soon to be ex-Speaker" of the MN House Steve Sviggum, Rep. 'God helped me get elected to pass the anti-gay marriage amendment' Dan Severson, and a cadre of local GOP "one issue" legislative candidates.

Remember folks, this is the same House Speaker who is telling the electorate how legislators all need to get along in the upcoming session after last years stalemate. "We need to reform the way the legislature does business," Sviggum contends.

Hmmm, let's see.

I guess in Sviggum's world, going out to Sen. Dallas Sams' and Senate Majority Leader Dean Johnson's DFL districts and shoving this wedge issue into their faces is a good way to start a 'peaceful' legislative session. This apparently will go a long way in 'GOP world' toward building collegial and trusting relationships in the legislature this year.

And what are we to think of Mark Kennedy? He must believe that gay marriage is the single most important issue facing the good people in Western Minnesota farm country. Kennedy is betting his election that the citizens out there care more about what goes on in people's bedrooms than they care about his votes on CAFTA, the budget slashing bill, or drilling for oil in Alaska.

Frankly, it is all too clear to most Minnesotans what is really going on in this part of the state. Steve Sviggum, Mark Kennedy, and their GOP gang have absolutely nothing of substance to campaign on this year. They have screwed things up so badly the past few years that this anti-gay marriage issue is their only hope for the fall 2006 elections. What a very sad condition this once cocky state GOP party is in.

Fortunately, even the dumb ol' farmers (sarc) out in Western Minnesota will see these rallies for what they are.... A truly embarrassing display by the state Republican leadership.

I think this issue when used over and over begins to lose it's effectiveness. Thanks to Pollytick for pointing out this rally was held in Alexandria.

CORRECTION: Mary Ellen Etremba was billed as being present at the Alexandria Rally by the Alexandria paper:

In addition to Kennedy, rally attendees will be able to meet with District 11A Representative Torrey Westrom, District 11B Representative Mary Ellen Otremba, District 14A Representative Dan Severson, District 13A Representative Bud Heidgerken, and Douglas County Sheriff Bill Ingebrigtsen, who is currently running for the Minnesota District 11 Senate seat.

Thanks to the anonocommenter who pointed this out.

Howard Stern Rips on Rev Willie Wilson

Recall Millions More March ED Willie Wilson and his over the top anti-gay sermon last July? Apparently Howard Stern ripped on him on a recent show. Malcontent has the tape. Hat Tip: Another Gay Republican.

Rev. Wilson Redux
Remember our good friend, the Rev. Willie Wilson and his obsession with the lesbian takeover of the black community?

I printed parts of his sermon last summer, but thanks to Howard Stern and The Malcontent, you can listen for yourself.

I guess you really haven't been to church until you've sat in the pew and listened to the preacher go on and on from the pulpit about strap-ons, lube, and anal sex. And you get to hear him embarrass the hell out of his son for not being able to get a date to prom (damn lesbians!). Thanks Dad!

Is this really what people want to hear when they take their children to church?

Al Junhke is Constant Annoyance on DFL State Central Committee List

At today's meeting in Minnetonka I talked to a DFL State Central committee member who told me that Al Juhnke is a regular poster over there and is obsessive about his position in opposition to legal abortion, and seems to think everyone else should think the same way. How much do people want to bet that Al Juhnke was Michael Brodkorb's source for the posts which eventually got the DFL Associate Chair to shut the list down? If people have some of Juhnke's posts on the DFL State Central list, please send them my way. I would love to republish them here for Lloydletta readers to enjoy.

An anonymous poster and a poster by the name of "schools out" who tends to only comment in defense of Al Juhnke took umbrage at my recent post about Steve Sviggum taking his show on the road in Willmar.

Since this hate rally is obviously aimed at Dean Johnson, people might want to know what Dean will be doing on Saturday -- he'll be ministering. Ironically enough, while these blowhards will be pontificating about the sanctity of marriage, Dean Johnson will actually be performing a marriage ceremony. Who will be participating in real family values?
DelNorte 02.11.06 - 5:40 am | #

FYI, the person in charge of leafletting churches last Sunday was none other than Bonnie Wilhelm, the Republican who ran against Al Juhnke in 2002.

Ask her the questions about hate. Ask Kennedy. Ask Sviggum. Ask Severson.

Thanks for pointing that out. Why didn't you send me a tip about Bonnie Wilhelm doing this last week? I would have reported on it. Is she going to be the Republican candidate in opposition to Junhke this time around?

When Log Cabin Republicans met with speaker Sviggum last year, I told him about the Death Penalty for Homosexuals sign and that I was disappointed that he did not speak out publicly against that sign. I spoke with Dan Severson at the Grand Rapids hearing about this issue and told him that the bible prescribed death for those who engage in fornication, and asked him whether he believed that should be part of state law. He said that this would be "a deterrent". It's laughable for anyone, except an anti-gay democrat to see this post as carrying water for the Republican party - since I point out that Speaker Sviggum and Congressman Kennedy are headlining this event, and I post the Death Penalty for Homosexuals sign from the 2004 Bachmann amendment rally and state: "It will be interesting to see if signs like this are part of the rally." Then after the photo is posted, I ask "Will Speaker Sviggum speak up publicly if he sees such signs at the rally?"

The political speakers at this event are entirely 100% Republican. Ask them why they want to focus voters' attention on this issue in Willmar.

Why should anyone wish to distract readers from the facts about this rally and those behind it? Wingman and other GOP bloggers sure do want DFLers from the metro and rural areas to fight among themselves over this.

Come to think of it, so does Ms. Young.

Could it be because Ms. Young is a Republican and she simply can't bear to face the facts about the Republican Party of Minnesota in 2006? Or is she merely an innocent "useful idiot" for the RPM?
Anonymous 02.11.06 - 9:59 am | #

Actually, while it may be Al Junhke's opinion that rural residents are bigoted against gays, and urban residents are not, the truth is actually not so simple. I attended a meeting in Hutchinson discussing this issue. Michele Bachmann was a special guest. This meeting brought people on both sides of the issue out, and both sides spoke up. I'd say the crowd was about 2/3 to 1/3 in support of the amendment. Some of the crowd was open to good information and others were fixed on their position.

Very interesting comments....So, now we know that it was Eva Young's GOP party who is behind this rally. Even a GOP legislative candidate (Wilhelm) is the organizer of the event. Hmmmm.....I guess we will have to read the papers the next few days to confirm but, why isn't Ms Young chastising Kennedy, Sviggum, Severson, and Wilhelm but rather goes after three Dems (Peterson, Tinklenberg, and Juhnke) who most likely were not even invited to this Republican pep-fest?

The question is whether Peterson, Tinklenberg or Juhnke would have accepted an invitation to speak at this event if they were asked? Does Al Junhke agree to meet with gay constituents at the annual OutFront Rally?

Creationist Dave Eaton Gets Strib Puff Piece


"For personal reasons I can no longer continue serving on the board," Eaton said. He gave up the seat immediately, and he declined to be interviewed but said in an e-mail to the Star Tribune that he was "not leaving for any health, family or career reasons."

"I've made my positions public in the past, and I will let them speak for themselves," he wrote.

Eaton often found himself at odds with the majority of the board during his three-and-a-half years as a member -- especially over his concerns about the International Baccalaureate program at Minnetonka High School. Eaton and fellow board member Bill Wenmark were often in the minority in votes cast by the seven-member board.

Wenmark said he is going to miss having Eaton as a supporter and friend on the board.

"He's a very quiet, very thoughtful person," Wenmark said of Eaton. "I always wanted him to talk more."

He said he admired how Eaton would quietly but directly question the district on issues such as finances. And as a practical matter, "It was beneficial to know I would be able to get a second" to a motion, Wenmark said. While he said he is excited and happy about working with new school board members Cathy Maes and Pam Langseth, it might be harder to get other board members to listen to some of his suggestions if he cannot even get someone to second his motions.

Wenmark said that there is no one reason why Eaton left the board, but that he had expressed concerns about problems he was having with both the school board and district employees. Eaton had complained during a meeting that district officials were reticent about providing him financial information that he believed he needed in his role as school board treasurer. And Eaton recently lost his bid for reelection as board treasurer to Peggy Stefan.

So the Reporter failing to get an interview with Eaton, just takes Eaton supporter, Wenmark's claims at face value. The reporter also talks to a school board candidate was supported by Eaton:

"I don't think it's a surprise in light of [the fact that] Mr. Eaton's candidates lost the election. He lost the votes he would've gained," she said. Eaton and Wenmark had endorsed school board candidates Mary Louise Bowe, Paul Borowski and Pam Langseth in the November elections for three seats. Of those three, only Langseth won.

Bowe said during the last election that several attacks were made on Eaton's character, and that might have influenced his decision to resign.

"I'm just really disappointed," said Bowe, who said Eaton provided a much-needed perspective on the board, especially on business matters. "I think generally this community has not treated him well as a school board member."

Bowe said she respected how Eaton, who has run software engineering and consulting companies, asked pointed questions about the budget and how dollars were being spent.

"He is an individual of incredible integrity and he has taken personal attacks for over a year now," Bowe said. "I think there is only so much one individual can take."

The article failed to mention Eaton's outspoken advocacy of Intelligent Design creationism both within the Minnetonka School District and in the state of Minnesota when he served on the Science Standards committee.

I met Dave Eaton when I debated Michele Bachmann on KKMS. When he introduced himself as Dave Eaton, I asked "Dave Eaton, the creationist", and he responded "yes."

PZ Myers rips the piece.

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:

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.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Sviggum to Speak at Bachmann Amendment Event in Willmar

Winger has the story. Congressman Mark Kennedy will also be in attendance.

It will be interesting to see if signs like this are part of the event.

Death Penalty for Homosexuals

Will Speaker Sviggum speak up publicly if he sees such signs at the rally?

Interesting pro and con comments in the Willmar paper:

Brett M.
2/10 6:36 PM I think the Minnesota or even the US have other important things to worry about than people of the same sex being married. What is the big deal, most kids now a days are more accepting of gays and lesbians. It seems to me the only people that care about this happening are the bible thumpers. If you don't want to accept it, than don't, we don't need to make a law for everything that people find gross or disgusting. What happened to freedom? By doing this we just limit even more freedoms that our country was founded on. We are supposed to be a country that is seperated from church. So why are laws being made around church. That is hippocritical of what our country means and how it was started. I'm not gay but I accept gay people, and I think everybody should. The funny thing is that half these people fighting against gays will end up knowing or may have already known a gay person, or maybe they just don't know they know a gay person OR EVEN BE RELATED TO ONE. The only reason why they want to get married is beacause then they get the same breaks as a "normal" marriage.
Dan H.
2/10 1:45 PM It is time for citizens to stand up for our family values. By accepting this unhealthy lifestyle, our communities will be changed. I want a constitutional amendment so judges can’t override our elected officials. I do not want my children to learn that being gay is a positive alternative lifestyle and that they should explore it. Remember, true love is willing to say no to those who may think they are right but are really hurting themselves in the process. The average age of death for homosexuals is 43 years old. Tolerance should be for that which is positive and healthy for all. My feeling is that any legislator who does not encourage or promote healthy and positive lifestyles should be removed form office. Some of the metro legislators and those of liberal world views are trying to change our world, and I will show my support for my country’s true values at the polls this fall. I hope others will join me!

Why is Michele Bachmann not speaking? Are the other supporters of this amendment embarrassed by her?

Update on the Stadium Boondoggle

Minneapolis Issues posters are hopping mad over the Stadium Boondoggle. I started a thread on the topic earlier this week, and the thread has been going all week. Other threads are here, here, and here.

Don Shelby from WCCO should be applauded for his common sense:

Amelia Santaniello:

Minnesota's Stadium Game is well beyond extra innings. Ballpark plans just keep
striking out. And now the Twins could move from the Metrodome next year. So Don
is here with a thought about how the latest stadium play is playing out

Don Shelby:

I should begin by saying that I take no position on whether the Twins should
get a new stadium. But the process doesn't make any sense to me.

The Hennepin County Commission has voted to raise taxes for a stadium, but no
county sales tax can be raised without the state legislature's approval. Here's
the goofy part. If a state legislator from Biwabik, or Winona or Marshall casts
the deciding vote to build or scuttle the stadium, Hennepin County voters
who disagree can't vote against them in the next election.

It doesn't seem right to me. If a stadium is approved or disapproved on the
vote of a legislator, who doesn't have any skin in the game, and is then immune
from the retribution of the voters, either way, seems to turn the notion of
representative democracy on its head.

Brad Finstad in Elbo Lake deserves brickbats. He sent out a press release to his area newspapers trumpetting the value of sticking it to Hennepin County Taxpayers for the twins stadium.

Last session, I sponsored a bill that would allow Hennepin County to raise its sales tax in order to build a stadium in Minneapolis. Its county commissioners basically stepped up and said 'we want the stadium' and all the economic benefits that area bars, restaurants and hotels could receive from it.

Actually it was a close - 4-3 - vote on this. Commissioner Stenglein had a conflict of interest on this.

In layman's terms, the Hennepin County sales tax increase would cost three cents for every $20 spent. And if you never shopped in Minneapolis or its Hennepin County suburbs, you would never contribute a dime towards the new stadium. If cost projections rose, the difference would be made up by either Hennepin County or Twins owner Carl Pohlad - not by Minnesota taxpayers.

The Twins stadium bill was bogged down in committee at the end of last year. And because a special session was not called near the end of the year, the stadium agreement negotiated between the Twins and Hennepin County expired.

I am confident of two things. First, I believe the Twins and Hennepin County can reach a similar deal again, and that once this bill reaches the floor in the Minnesota House of Representatives it will be approved. Secondly, I am convinced that if we don't take advantage of this second chance there is a very real chance we could lose the Minnesota Twins.

This is the best stadium proposal we are ever going to see. If Hennepin County wants to raise taxes on its citizens because they view a stadium as an economic development package, why should lawmakers stand in the way? You can suggest that Pohlad pay for the building himself, but if that were an option, it would have happened long ago. If keeping the Twins in Minnesota is important to you, contact your lawmakers and tell them to support this initiative.

We have the rare second chance to end the Twins stadium debate once and for all - while holding state taxpayers harmless. It is my hope that we will finally take action, as opposed to committing another error by leaving this proposal on the bench.

A Lloydletta reader sent me a copy of his email to Rep. Finstad:

Representative Finstad

I grew up in Elbow Lake, Minnesota, and still read the Grant County Herald. I have lived in Minneapolis since 1988.

The Grant County Herald published your press release about a Hennepin County Twins stadium in its February 8th issue.

It is beyond the realm of decency for outstate legislators to carry the water on metro-area stadium legislation, because it is a 'safe vote' for them. Shame on you.

By law, a sales tax increase in Hennepin County can only be approved by a referendum. This proposal that Hennepin County Commissioner Mike Opat negotiated last spring specifically requires that the sales tax be approved by the board, without a referendum. With constitutional amendment fever sweeping the state this year, why not 'let the people decide' on this topic, especially if the law requires it? Let's put a sales tax increase that directly benefits private business owners up for a popular vote in Hennepin County, and see what happens.

I need to clarify your understanding on two key points:

Roughly one fourth of Minnesota citizens live in Hennepin County, so your statement about about 'holding state taxpayers harmless' is not quite true.

When you say the Hennepin County commissioners 'stepped up' and said 'we want the stadium', here's what really happened. After much debate, 4 of the 7 commissioners voted to send this request to the Legislature. Of the 4 who supported the resolution, one was in the middle of an election to be mayor of Minneapolis, and he loaded up with resolution with plenty of progressive pork on its way out the door. Another of the votes of support came from a commissioner who maybe should have abstained from voting, due to relationships with the owners of the proposed stadium site.

To have 4 people approve increased sales taxes for the next 30 years that will directly affect one fourth of the citizens of Minnesota is neither ethical, fair, or legal.

Nobody in the Minnesota House or Senate should be proposing or supporting this pork without a referendum. I urge you to not sponsor the bill.

You can email Brad Finstad at:

His home and business numbers are:

(507) 354-4431
Business: (507) 381-6575

Call him at reasonable hours to express your opinion.

Kelly Doran's Campaign Tapes Business Democrats Forum

Michael McIntee from Inside Minnesota Politics notes in the comments:

Sorry we couldn't make it to this one. Kelly Doran's campaign has recorded it and promises to make it available on his website with Spanish and Somali translations (I believe that's a first)

If you don't care to wade through the entire debate, we'll probably have portions of it on the next edition of Inside Minnesota Politics.
Mike McIntee

I hope Kelly Doran will put the complete, unedited debate out there. Candidates are going to have an interest in editing with these.

Is Mike Hatch Bravely Running Away from Another Debate?

This time in Virginia on the Iron Range.


Four Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party candidates running for the governor's office will be on the Iron Range today and Saturday.

Kelly Doran, a Twin Cities-based real estate developer, stops today at the Mesabi Range Technical College in Virginia at 9:15 a.m. At 11:45 a.m. he visits the Pioneer Senior Center in Cook. At 1:30 p.m. Doran will meet with residents at Tower Cafe on Main Street, Tower. At 3:15 p.m. he will visit with residents in Ely at the Ely Grand Lodge.

On Saturday, Doran joins two other DFL gubernatorial hopefuls, state Sens. Steve Kelley of Hopkins and Becky Lourey of Kerrick, at a forum in Virginia. The trio will square off at the Coates Plaza Hotel, 502 Chestnut St., starting at 2 p.m.

Mike Hatch likes to claim this is where his strength is. I don't think so.

Hat Tip to the Drama Queen.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Hatch Bravely Runs Away from Another Debate

This time sponsored by the Business Democrats. And what a lame excuse. The Drama Queen has a post worth reading on the topic.

The Drama Queen is not amused by the Dump John Kline post. Will there be another lawsuit? What about the first amendment rights of anonobloggers?

Developing. . .

Michele Bachmann Taking A Card from Patty Wetterling

The Student for Bachmann suggests that it's all about the children.

The Student for Bachmann also posts the full text of a Roll Call article about the race between Elwyn Tinklenberg and Patty Wetterling.

In the 6th, a district that spans from the Twin Cities exurbs past St. Cloud, Tinklenberg is busy double-checking commitments while Republicans churn out news releases that gleefully note Wetterling's utterance last year that she cannot win in the 6th.

Wetterling had barely declared herself a Congressional candidate when the National Republican Congressional Committee reminded people that Wetterling "believes she can win a statewide race but that she'd lose another election in the Republican-leaning 6th district." The NRCC, further quoting an April St. Paul Pioneer Press story in which Wetterling said, "The numbers show me that ... I will not win."

As a first-time candidate last cycle, Wetterling garnered an impressive 46 percent of the 6th district vote against Rep. Mark Kennedy (R). But she opted for a Senate bid this year because polling revealed she would fare better statewide.

"She would have been far smarter to say 'this isn't a year I will run for public office' and step back, regroup," observed Barry Casselman, a political columnist based in Minnesota. "It seems almost like she's addicted to running."

Tinklenberg fumed that Wetterling went back on her commitment to him that she would not run.

Sarah Janecek, co-editor of the Politics in Minnesota newsletter, said that argument is "a bust." Even though Wetterling has sought to portray herself as an anti-politician, "people expect politicians to break promises about their own futures," Janecek said.

One promise Wetterling cannot break is the one she made to abide by the Democratic nominating process, Casselman said.

Both Tinklenberg and Wetterling said they would end their campaigns if they do not secure the party endorsement at the May 13 convention of district party leaders rather than push on to a September primary.

Wetterling "has to stick by it or she has no credibility," Casselman said.

So does Elwyn Tinklenberg. Does Tinklenberg intend to run in the primary?

Wetterling advisers say she took the plunge back into the House race because people asked her to.

"The reality of it is folks in the district came to Patty to do this, there was an overwhelming display of support for her," said Wetterling spokesman Corey Day. "Party activists and party leaders were really excited about her getting in the race."

From a national perspective, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee seems content to have two strong challengers, as long as a nominee is chosen in May and the fight doesn't drag on to the September primary.

"The Republican field of status quo politicians makes this seat competitive in and of itself," said Jennifer Paski, a DCCC spokeswoman. "But the great news for Minnesota Democrats is that they have a choice between two top-tier candidates who are committed to change in Washington."

Tinklenberg's camp is confident that he has the leg up, especially given that party caucuses begin next month.

"We think that we have a very firm hand with respect to the primary," said Bob Doyle, Tinklenberg’s consultant. "We've been out there for a year; we've lined up a tremendous amount of supporters. We have the unified AFL-CIO endorsement. We start out clearly at an advantage."

Is Bob Doyle a consultant from DC or Minnesota? The article doesn't say.

Tinklenberg can also boast that DCCC Chairman Rahm Emanuel (Ill.) and House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) have already hosted fundraisers for him while House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) have donated to his campaign. Janecek said none of that really matters considering it happened when he was the lone Democratic candidate in a targeted race.

"Elwyn was in the race for a while and a buzz did not develop about his candidacy," she said. National Democrats had boasted that Tinklenberg is a "good fit" for the Republican-leaning district. He supports gun rights and opposes abortion rights, while Wetterling is just the opposite.

Interesting that they leave out Tinklenberg's announced support of the Federal Bachmann Amendment. Has he changed his position on that issue?

None of that matters in nominating conventions, which are attended by party activists who tend to the extremes of their parties, Janecek said.

Wetterling was endorsed by EMILY’s List last cycle but in the Senate contest, the influential abortion-rights group sided with Klobuchar. That hurt Wetterling’s ability to raise money — Klobuchar ended 2005 with $1.7 million in the bank while Wetterling had around $200,000.
"She was having a hard time raising money and Amy Klobuchar's clinching national groups like EMILY’s List really hurt her campaign," Janecek said. "Now she has a shot at national money."
It was an open secret that EMILY's List leaders tried to coax Wetterling out of a Senate bid and back into the House race months ago.

"Clearly we’re very excited about her getting in in the 6th," said EMILY's List spokeswoman Ramona Oliver. "We've said all along that she would be a terrific candidate who can win that seat."

In the end Tinklenberg and Wetterling only have to convince the approximately 170 delegates who will determine their fate.

Opinions differ on who can best do that but one thing for certain is that Wetterling's movements rankled some Democrats, especially Tinklenberg.

"What everybody wants is a win," Doyle said. "Patty has said time and again on the record that she cannot win here and that was why she was running for the U.S. Senate and then when her Senate campaign ran aground — it seems a decision of personal expediency."

Patty Wetterling made a courtesy call to Elwyn Tinklenberg, and he reacted by having a public temper tantrum in the media. Tinklenberg could react by saying he is looking forward to debating Wetterling on the issues. People do change their minds. Most people understand this.

Lloydletta's Breaking News Liberated Michael McIntee's Post from Brodkorb's Censorship

From the comments to this:

whoever said Inside MN Politics was "fair and balanced" its produced by a couple of DFL activists, i look forward to listening to what their take on things is and usually i agree and sometimes i dont-so what? i dont ever remember McIntee or Idusogie claiming to be journalists or impartial. jeez, what a loser brodkorb is, does he get paid to write this crap?
jcb 02.08.06 - 12:32 am | #

Representative John Kline is a previous client of Weber-Johnson, PA.
Michael B. Brodkorb 02.08.06 - 6:33 am | #

Thanks for helping to "liberate" my comment from Brodkorb's comment approval cue. The comment is now posted and Brodkorb claims it was there all the time. However, it now appears BEFORE any of your comments on his site and we both know it wasn't there before.

By the way, he still hasn't corrected the post.
Mike McIntee

McIntee's post indeed was liberated on Minnesota Democrats Exposed. Michael Brodkorb the Drama Queen, is trying to claim it was there all along:

Michael M said...

Thanks for the correction. As evidenced from one of the headlines we're well aware that John Kline is a Representative and the rest of the copy has been corrected to conform.

And for YOUR post to be accurate you'll need to note that what you posted are NOT the titles of our latest podcasts but the headlines from our latest podcast (singular).

You obviously wouldn't have made that error if you had actually listened to the show.

If you listen to the show and find any errors, or have any complaints please email us.
3:56 PM
lloydletta said...

The DFL feels about whoever is leaking to you and the 40th district chair the way the GOP feels about Andy Aplikowski's blog and how that blog generated a City Pages story about Tony Sutton.
8:22 PM
lloydletta said...

I understand that Michael McIntee from Inside Minnesota Politics tried to post a response - and you wouldn't post it. What are you afraid of?
10:25 PM
Minnesota Democrats Exposed said...

Are you kidding me? The post is above your comment. I am sent an email from Blogger everytime someone leaves a comment.

I published Mr. McIntee's comment. After reading you post Eva, looks like you got ahead of yourself.
5:19 AM

Actually that's not the case. My public post on the issue motivated the Drama Queen to approve McIntee's post. I commented on Brodkorb's post. We'll see if he approves the comment.

Michael Brodkorb attended the Business Democrats forum - and pointed out that Mike Hatch was AWOL. Seems like Hatch is afraid to debate his rivals. I wonder if the Unions will have the smarts to sponsor a gubanatorial candidate forum? Mike Hatch wasn't afraid to go to the union screenings - and he brought staff from his taxpayer-funded office with him to union screenings during business hours. Isn't that what campaign staff is for? The unions should do have a governor and senate candidate forum as a service for their members. The rank and file often don't follow the union recommendation on candidates. The unions could have more influence by sponsoring candidate forums than they will by endorsing candidates.

I hope that Inside Minnesota Politics taped this forum, and will make it available on a podcast.

The So-Called "Marriage Protection Amendment", the Amendment Formerly Known as the Federal Marriage Amendment to be Voted on in March

The Human Rights Campaign has an action alert on the topic. I encourage readers to read the alert and write your congresscritter or senator. What's interesting is a couple days ago, the anti-gay American Family Association sent out an alert about this issue, and claimed that the gay groups had already organized to send out alerts about this issue. Unfortunately, the gay groups tend to be more organized about fundraising for themselves than their mission. If the gay groups were more focused on their mission they'd have a better success rate.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

BREAKING NEWS! Michael Brodkorb the Drama Queen Censors Inside MN Politics Post

Michael McIntee tried to leave a correction on the Drama Queen's blog in response to this. The Drama Queen is a bit thin skinned when it comes to corrections.

I don't have word for word what I wrote because I (mistakenly) didn't think I'd have to recreate the post. To the best of my memory this is what I included in the post:

I thanked him for the correction, noting that obviously we were aware that John Kline is a Congressman since we had used "Rep." in the headline and that we had made the rest of the copy conform. I also pointed out the headlines he was referring to were only about one podcast not podcasts (plural) as he had posted, something that would have been obvious had he listened to the show and that he should correct his own posting on this. I told him he should email me if there were any errors in the show.

Speaking of Drama Queens, Weber-Johnson's client (WJ is Brodkorb's employer - a PR firm), Rep. John Kline seems to be a bit of a drama queen also.

Too Stupid to Win: DFL Edition

The DFL Associate Chair allowed the Drama Queen Michael Brodkorb to goad her into shutting down the DFL State Central Committee yahoogroup.

I have been informed that DFL Party Associate Chair Donna Cassutt has shut down the entire DFL State Central Committee discussing group to prevent further leaks to Minnesota Democrats Exposed.

In an attempt to catch one of my numerous sources, Cassutt is requiring every previous member of the listserve to re-apply.

If they really want to make it difficult for me to get tips from DFL activists, I would recommend sending messages via homing pigeons.

Yup, Michael Brodkorb's leaks are from the Tinklenberg campaign, Janet Robert and Bill Luther. I'd bet money on it.

Someone leaked this to Brodkorb:

Tuesday, February 07, 2006
This is great. Donna Cassutt should sleep well tonight knowing her orders to DFL activists are always followed.


Dear State Central Committee Yahoo! Group members,

I am becoming increasingly disappointed by actions related to this Yahoo! Group. First, this is designed for leaders within the DFL Party to exchange ideas, share 'best practices', debate issues and keep each other informed of events happening in their respective areas. This group is not designed to tear down and smear other DFLers or DFL candidates. I have found some of the postings over the last few months to be below the level of discourse we expect from leaders and, quite truthfully, downright mean-spirited. That is not the purpose of this Yahoo! Group.

Second, I am alarmed at the regularity that postings from this group are ending up on Minnesota Democrats Exposed. For the record, that site is not our friend. And the fact that there are postings on this list that people think the Republicans on MDE will enjoy only reinforces what I have said above. We cannot continue down the path of tearing each other down. That is the politics of defeat, and we have the opportunity to do incredible things this year. I know that we are capable of having spirited discussions about issues and candidates, while remaining respectful to one another and our candidates. The postings on this group should remain confidential. For lack of a better term, this is family business - not public business so whoever is sharing information with Republican operatives, I am asking you to please stop.

This Yahoo! Group is a privilege---let's respect it and use it to collectively win in November for the common good.


Donna Cassutt, Associate Chair
Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party

posted by Minnesota Democrats Exposed

I commented over on Brodkorb's site. I don't think he'll accept my comment. I'm not sure how many people are on that yahoogroup - but if there are 200 or so members, it's not going to be a confidential list - and campaigns are going to leak from the list to Brodkorb to gain an advantage over other campaigns.

Many of the paid Republican activists weren't too happy with Andy Aplikowski - when he used his blog to post "family business" to the public. That family business then made City Pages.

Pulling down that State Central List will demotivate a number of DFLers who enjoy that list. There's other ways to deal with the interpersonal bickering that inevitably occurs on mailing lists.

Plymouth State Legislators on the Stadium Boondoggle

From a Lloydletta reader who attended this meeting:

On Saturday, Senators Rest, Bonoff and Olson hosted a very good town forum at the Plymouth Community Library. The Twins question was posed by a gentleman who proclaimed himself to be an independent voter. He said that the state needed to either act on the Twins proposal or let them know that they should leave the state (I am paraphrasing) He wanted to know the senators' position on the Twins proposal. Here were the stances: Rest and Olson – still opposed to the proposal without a referendum; Bonoff – supports the current proposal without a referendum – open to all suggestions moving forward. All acknowledged that the Twins deal that was on the table had technically expired so the point may be moot. Bonoff took a poll of the attendees by a show of hands (I think there were well over 60 people there) and overwhelmingly people were not supportive of the increase in sales tax for the stadium without a referendum. A few people did support the current Twins proposal without the referendum. Bonoff cited the StarTribune headline that said she won the special election despite her stance on the Twins stadium proposal. We shall see what the future holds with regards to stadium proposals and the voters.

Contact Terri Bonoff: to let her know how you feel about the Stadium boondoggle.

Terri will be a guest at another town meeting - this time in Minnetonka. Here's the scoop:

There is another town hall in Minnetonka that your readers may want to know about. Stadium questions may be more timely since the recent court decision this week on the Twins' lease and the Governor’s recent meetings on the subject.

This Saturday, Feb 11 at 10:30 am
Minnetonka City Hall - 14600 Minnetonka Blvd
Will include Rep. Ron Abrams, Sen. David Hann, Rep. Maria Ruud and Sen. Terri Bonoff

This will be a good opportunity to get all of these people on the record on the stadium tax without referendum. This would also be a good place to bring up the Bachmann amendment. The Republicans in Minnetonka aren't too keen on the Leviticus crowd.

Steve Kelley Answers the Question Sorta....

From Steve Kelley's FAQ:

Q: Do you support a Twins or Gopher stadium?
A: Yes. I understand why stadiums are controversial. As a progressive, I believe that we can choose to use some public funds to support a range of public amenities, whether it is an orchestra hall, public parks, or a stadium. We don't all benefit or enjoy going to the orchestra or for a walk along the lakes, but we should support public funds to build and maintain those things. I think a stadium should receive some public support for the same reasons.

You don't have the equivalent of baseball player salaries in the parks or in orchestras.

An article in the Strib reports that a judge says the Twins aren't obligated to stay in the dome.

Hennepin County Commissioner Mike Opat said the ruling "should serve to remind people that there's one less reason for the team to stay here. They don't have a lease. They don't have a commitment for a new ballpark. So I think it would be hard to fault them for looking around."

Opat was an architect of a $478 million county-Twins proposal to build a stadium in Minneapolis' Warehouse District with a countywide sales tax. The county needs legislative authorization for the sales tax, but the Legislature hasn't voted on it. The estimated cost of the proposal has since increased $30 million.

How the governor sees it

Brian McClung, a spokesman for Gov. Tim Pawlenty said, "What we've been saying all along is it's clear the Twins are not going to stay in the Metrodome, and this obviously reinforces that."

McClung added, "If the public believes the Twins are an amenity that should be kept, then action is going to have to be taken."

In a decade of debate, Minnesotans have expressed consistent opposition to public subsidies for a Twins stadium.

"I think citizens need to be aware that there are real consequences," Sviggum said. "The Twins might really leave. Contraction is also a real possibility."

The meeting of legislative leaders and team officials earlier Monday produced only an agreement for more meetings.

House Minority Leader Matt Entenza, DFL-St. Paul, said that the state would not pay the tab and that a stadium would not be a higher priority than education or health care in the coming session.

Asked whether the Twins might shell out more to accommodate the rising cost of a new stadium, Twins Sports Inc. President Jerry Bell said, "Probably not."

Why doesn't the Twins raise money from the private sector for this stadium? The Gopher Stadium plan has the University raising a much higher percentage of the cost from the private sector. If this is a state wide amenity, why doesn't Pawlenty propose to include his home town - Eagan - in the sales tax increase to pay for the stadium? Why doesn't Sviggum do the same?

As far as Commissioner Opat goes - does he have an opponent yet? Greg Gray, running for Mark Stenglein's seat told me he opposes the Hennepin County plan to raise taxes for the stadium without a referendum.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Tax Implications of Stadium Boondoggle

Plymouth Mayor Judy Johnson commented on my post about the Edina City Council meeting which will discuss taking a stand against a stadium tax without a referendum.

The Plymouth City Council, last year, passed a motion that Hennepin County should send this proposed tax increase to the voters as required by current law. The county commissioners, on a very narrow split vote, chose not to do so and want an exemption from state law to enact an increase in the sales tax on Hennepin County taxpayers. All cities pay sales tax on their purchases - enacted in the early 90's when the state hit deficits a decade ago. The state sales tax is, therefore, rolled into property taxes. Also, cities that propose a local option sales tax or an increase in their sales tax for local projects, like libraries, must go for voter approval as required by state law. I would hope common sense would prevail and not force a minority of taxpayers to be left without a voting voice - this is very bad tax policy.

Judy said it well.

Steve Kelley's campaign media advisory for this week stated:

Monday, February 6th, 2006, 9:45 a.m. – Senator Kelley will participate in a private meeting at the governor's mansion in St. Paul to speak with the governor and caucus leaders about various stadium issues in Minnesota.

I called the Governor's Office this morning and his staff told me he strongly prefers a referendum requirement in a stadium bill. I asked if the governor was planning on vetoing a stadium bill that didn't require voter approval. The staff did not know the answer to that one. It's very irritating that reporters don't ask Governor Pawlenty that question during a press conference. Then I wrote Kelley's campaign about the stadium:

On Mon, 6 Feb 2006 08:26:09 -0600
If I understand Kelley's public statements - he favors increasing taxes on Hennepin County residents for a Stadium - and supports the exemption from the referendum requirement.

What I don't get is if the stadium is a state wide asset, then taxpayers statewide should pay for it. Why should legislators from St Paul, Willmar or St Cloud vote to increase Hennepin
County taxes?

Is that correct?

Eva Young

Laura Lehman from Citizens for a Stadium Tax Referendum also wrote Kelley's campaign. I am posting her email with her permission.

Dear Jessica,
I am a Democrat planning to attend caucuses and undecided about my choice for governor. I am perplexed by Senator Kelley's position on the (potential) Twins Stadium, given that Democrats are not usually proponents of corporate welfare (of which this is a prime example) and given that the Team Owner and 4 self-serving County Commissioners are attempting to circumvent Minnesota law by exempting the desired stadium (sales) tax from the required referendum. I have always been under the impression that DFL candidates could be counted on to stand up for the rights of the (common) people. Senator Kelley's position on the Twins Stadium flies in the face of all that the DFL stands for. What is his explanation for this so that I may explain it to others at the caucuses in March.
Thank you for your assistance.
Laura Lehmann.

Jessica Null from Kelley's campaign responded:

He does support the stadium, but he believes things like education and health care are far more important--and if there is an increased statewide tax the money could and should arguably be used for education and health care, he believes. He does support an increase in revenue to fund those things, but the governor resists.

The legislators do not vote to directly increase taxes. The vote is to give the OK to the Hennepin Cty Commissioners to consider and vote to increase taxes.


I thought this was avoiding the issue.

Mon, 6 Feb 2006 11:52:04 -0600
Jessica: Actually that's not correct - the stadium bill would exempt Hennepin county from the referendum requirement in this bill. Why should the county be exempt from a referendum for this - but school and library bonding bills require voter approval? This makes no sense. If the legislators vote for a bill that exempts Hennepin County from the referendum requirement in state law, then they are voting to increase Hennepin County sales taxes.

So my question is - why does Steve Kelley support an exemption in state law from the voter approval requirement for the Twins Stadium - while we vote on things like the Central Library (Minneapolis voted to increase property taxes for that), and public school bonding or class size reduction funding referendums? Three Hennepin County Cities have come out publicly favoring a referendum. Edina is considering this at their City Council meeting on Tuesday.

I'll agree with you on this - the County Commissioners pushing this should be dumped. It's very interesting that the county commissioners who favor this, aren't willing to put language precluding them from getting the cushy part time jobs on the stadium commission. The reason the Henn County Commissioners don't want to have voter approval on this is, it would help an opponent - this is especially true for Opat.

Kelley campaign response:

Technically they are not directly voting to increase Hennepin county sales taxes; but in principle yes, they are, because they know that 4 of 7 commissioners support doing that and will vote to do that.

The difference between this instance and those you mentioned below is that this is a sales tax and school and library bonding affects property taxes. This is not new--in the past the state has authorized cities to construct things without a referendum--the Mpls, St. Paul, and Duluth Convention Centers for example--all with local option sales taxes and not property taxes.

Sen. Kelley has been consistent on this issue in the past. He believes that in a representative government such as ours, elected officials have a responsibility to listen to voters, learn the issue, make a decision, and then be held accountable during elections.

We also have Sen. Kelley's short answer to the stadium question on our website, on the Issues page, under FAQs if you want read more.

Tinklenberg v Wetterling

Pollytick in Minnesota is upset that Wetterling is challenging Elwyn Tinklenberg, the Federal Bachmann Amendment supporting DFL candidate for the 6th District congresscritter position.

As to our friend lloydletta, we would take what you have to say with a bit of caution. You are a well known GOP activist in the Twin Cities. As such, you would espouse thoughts that would benefit GOP'ers. If Dems cater to the Twin City liberals, they will never take back the House or win the Governorship. Period.

I don't think it's a liberal position to support federal funded stem cell research. In fact, I think it's an extreme position to oppose stem cell research. If people are serious that fertilized eggs are equivalent to fully developed human beings, they should also outlaw In Vitro Fertilization - which after all disposes of the excess embryos created in the process. After all strongly pro-life Senators such as Orin Hatch from Utah support embryonic stem cell research.

Rural pork - such as Oberstar's road projects don't play well in the Twin Cities. That is not a liberal position. It's also a huge pet peeve for me how many rural legislators support increasing the Hennepin County sales tax for a stadium.

Let's not forget that those hated Twin Cities residents have vacation homes in greater Minnesota and contribute to the economy over there. If you look at where the taxes go, Minneapolis pays more in than what we get back from the state.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Creationist Dave Eaton Resigns from Minnetonka School Board

PZ Myers has the story. Will Yecke bring him down to Florida?

Edina City Council Will Consider Taking Stand Opposing Stadium Tax Without Referendum

URGENT: Public Hearing

Twins Stadium: $1 billion tax on us!!

A sales tax increase on our purchases!

FACT: Minnesota law requires a voter referendum for any sales tax increase, BUT team owner & Hennepin County want a SPECIAL exception!

Edina Public Hearing:

WHEN: This Tuesday, February 7, 2006 at 8:00 p.m.
WHERE: Edina City Hall
AGENDA: Whether the Edina City Council supports your lawful right to vote on any sales tax increase and will pass a resolution stating this.

Does your right to vote on a sales tax increase matter to you?
Let your voice be heard – vital that everyone attend!

Contact your City Council Members:
Ann Swenson...952-927-7524 Alice Hulbert…952-942-5615
Scot Housh…763-302-7174 Linda Masica….952-942-6770
Mayor James Hovland….612-874-8550
put member's name in subject line

Citizens for a Stadium Tax Referendum

I helped Laura Lehman distribute these flyers in her neighborhood. Plymouth, Eden Prairie and Mound have all passed similar resolutions. Edina should follow suit. So should Minneapolis.

Mike Kazuba has an excellent article in the Strib that exposes the conflict of interest in the Governor's Office over the Hennepin County Stadium boondoggle.

Gov. Tim Pawlenty's personal efforts to salvage plans for a new Minnesota Twins baseball stadium in downtown Minneapolis have immersed the governor in a proposal that has a series of ties to him politically.

Brian McClung, Pawlenty's communications director who now briefs reporters on the stadium's progress, was a lobbyist for Twinsville Inc., the corporation formed to promote the ballpark site and pitch redevelopment plans for the surrounding area.

In that job, which he held for less than two months in 2004, McClung worked for Twinsville executives Bruce Lambrecht and Rich Pogin, who contributed money to Pawlenty's 2002 campaign and co-hosted a fundraiser for the governor at Lambrecht's Minnetonka home. Lambrecht and Pogin manage three limited partnerships, comprised of about 200 investors, that own most of the stadium site.

Soon after Pawlenty was elected, Lambrecht's wife, Jeanne Braun, was hired as Pawlenty's personal assistant, and for more than two years worked side by side with Pawlenty in the governor's office until she resigned in May.

In 2004, while his wife worked for the governor, Lambrecht spent $90,000 lobbying for Twinsville but said in a statement to the Star Tribune that his efforts were primarily directed at the Legislature. "At no time did I lobby the governor," said Lambrecht, who described Pawlenty as "an acquaintance through politics and not a 'friend' through social circles."

Though McClung, Lambrecht and Pogin said the relationships have existed for years and have not moved the stadium closer to reality, Pawlenty's increased involvement has brought additional scrutiny by ballpark opponents of any role these ties may play.

Since Christmas, Pawlenty has hosted meetings in his office and at the governor's residence to inject new life into the $478 million baseball stadium proposal. It would be partly financed by a 0.15 percent sales tax in Hennepin County, a deal approved May 3 by the Hennepin County Board. McClung said the governor plans more meetings before the Legislature convenes in March.

Although Pawlenty had previously lent only lukewarm support to the Hennepin County proposal, he said after meeting with team and county officials in December that "we need as a state to keep our Minnesota Twins." The governor added that he preferred a referendum on using sales tax money but realized the team is opposed to doing so.

"There's so many conflicts of interest in the whole deal, it's enough to make your head spin," said Laura Lehmann, a spokeswoman for Citizens for a Stadium Tax Referendum. The group opposes plans by the county and the Twins to seek a legislative exemption to a state law requiring a referendum on the use of sales tax money.

Read the whole thing. Then call the Governor at 651-296-3391 and tell him you want a referendum on the Hennepin County Stadium tax.

Geoff Michel Answers Constituent Email

Hi Eva,
Thanks again for your help today. I have forwarded to you the email I received from Geoff Michel. Actually, I had never contacted his office regarding malpractice reform, so I have no idea where he got that....But he says in black and white that he supports a referendum. Now, whether that means he'd vote down a bill that did not HAVE a referendum....well, that's semantics and politics for you.
Laura L.

From: Sen.Geoff Michel []
Sent: Friday, January 06, 2006 9:03 AM
To: Laura Lehman
Subject: State sale of information

Dear Dr. Lehmann: Thank you for your email regarding state sale of driver information.

I agree and expect bipartisan legislation will pass this session that will end this practice.

Please accept my apology for not responding to earlier communications from you. That is not acceptable. During the height of session my office receives up to 100 communications per day. I make sure to read everything from residents of Edina and West Bloomington but cannot always respond as quickly as I'd like. My goal for constituents is to respond to most calls,letters, faxes and email within one week.

I do know that you are supportive of medical malpractice reforms that I have sponsored in the Senate. I'm particularly concerned about emergency physicians and have enjoyed working with many of your colleagues on this issue. We have more to do.

And I recall, and have read recently in the Pioneer Press, your strong support for a referendum on the Hennepin County- Twins proposal. Again, I agree with you that Hennepin County is being asked to bear more than a fair share of this proposal and that should require a referendum. Now that a new year has begun I do not believe the Twins proposal will be revived and I don't believe this will come before the Legislature this year.

I am a strong proponent of the University of Minnesota stadium proposal and feel that Minnesotans distinguish between professional sports stadiums and suppport for the University.

Thank you again for contacting me on these matters and I'm sorry about not following up in a timely fashion.

Please let me know if you have other concerns or questions.


Geoff Michel
State Senator
District 41
133 State Office Bldg.
St. Paul, MN 55155

"laura lehmann" 1/5/2006 5:38:47 PM
Senator Michel,

I strongly urge you to support legislation sponsored by Sen. Ann Rest and Rep. Jim Davnie to end the sale by the state of Minnesota of drivers license information. In this age of identity theft it is an utter disgrace that this took place, and anyone who does not help to end this practice will be as guilty as those who authorized it in the first place. This is not an issue that will be forgotten at election time. You have chosen not to respond to any of my previous emails, so I do not expect a response to this one -- but at least do the right thing and end this practice that endangers the financial stability of every Minnesotan with a drivers license. Thank you for your time.

Laura J. Lehmann, M.D.

So there you have it... Geoff Michel is on the record favoring a Stadium Tax referendum in Hennepin County. Whether that means he will vote that way is another story.

Polytick in Minnesota Upset about Wetterling Entering 6th District Race


Conservative Dems Need Not Apply

Patty Wetterling's announcement today goes much deeper than simply a response to polling data. It is believed by many that it may be more of an intolerance from the progressive flank of the state DFL party to a conservative candidate.

You see, Elwin Tinklenberg is not your 'typical' DFL Central Committee poster child. He is pro-life, anti-gay marriage, and leans to the right side of the DFL spectrum on a number of issues. This immediately put him at odds with the party king makers.

Tinklenberg's politics fit the 6th Congressional District profile very well. He is a conservative Dem. He has elected experience as the mayor of Blaine. And, as Governor Ventura's former transportation commissioner, he can actually address transportation issues (a real biggy in this district)and appeal to the independence party voters domiciled in Anoka county.

However, Elwin's good 'fit' still felt too uncomfortable for many in the DFL party back room. This isn't the first time that conservative Dems have been asked to step aside. Looking at the current major statewide races, you see only liberal candidates populating the DFL candidate line-ups. Take a gander at the current House DFL leadership roster and you see 3 Twin City liberals and one 'non-offensive' socially liberal Iron Ranger. It would certainly appear to most that right-leaning democrats have not been given a real welcoming reception as of late. (Note: Sen. Dean Johnson may be the exception that proves this rule.)

Tinklenberg's had close to a year to get the party base energised. People are underwhelmed about his candidacy. He doesn't just oppose gay marriage, he supports the Federal Marriage Amendment - the only 6th District candidate aside from the notoriously anti-gay Michele Bachmann to take that stand. His fundraising reports show that he is PAC Man, in raising money from PACs rather than the grass roots.

Wetterling vs Tinklenberg Comments on MNPublius


El has almost no support in the 6th. I dont know anyone who is the least bit excited about him.

Bettcha Patty raises a million bucks in two weeks.

Posted by: Anonymous | January 31, 2006 11:17 AM

I think El will be able to bounce off gop attacks better, and he gives them less ammo in the first place. He is for civil unions, pro-gun rights, wants to address health care issues. This should play pretty good with the moderates in the 6th.

At the same time Patty could really take it this time as well. She is more known then any of the gop people by far. People trust Wetterling.. Mark Kennedy slimed her to squeak out a win.

Perhaps let El go for this one. Patty should try in 2008 if El doesn't make it to D.C.

Posted by: Demrock6 | January 31, 2006 12:00 PM

If Tinklenberg favors the Federal Marriage Amendment in it's current version, he opposes civil unions and supports an effort to marginalize gay citizens in the federal constitution. Tinklenberg's campaign has made no effort to correct the record in the press. So it seems that he wants to play both ways on this issue.

Patty has more cash on hand than El does. As far as elections go, she can only spend it on another federal race. That leaves out any help on the Gubernatoral side.
Patty has a campaign in place that is composed of some very good operators with federal campaign experience and Washington know-how. Very important. El will lose support the moment she announces and the DC money and support will dry up.
Patty has about 100% name recognition in the Sixth. El is still working on his which means he'll be spending money.
Patty knows the district well, as does some of her campaign people. She walks into this like a person that's been in it for a year.

So, timing is not an issue.
El can be a good soldier and bow out, throw his support around Patty and get the opportunity to run with Hatch.

Posted by: StPaul_DFLer | January 31, 2006 12:28 PM

Patty went back on her word of supporting El and avoiding a primary. This really hurts her credibility. That's why us Labor guys (and Oberstar, Peterson, Luther) are going to stick with El. He's more viable anyway. And he and Patty have about the same cash on hand.

Posted by: Anonymous | January 31, 2006 03:19 PM

Peterson supports the Federal Marriage Amendment - and when HRC lobbyists visited his office, he said that he didn't believe gays lived in his district. That is one of the most moronic statements I've ever heard from a congresscritter.

If going back on your word hurts you - why did all of you and the three Congressmen support Wellstone in 2002?

If El is more viable, why is he name recognition only at 44% and Patty is sitting at 97% in the district? If El is more viable, why is the DCCC pulling out and switching to Patty? One would think that the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee who sole job is to support Democratic candidates for Congress would understand viability.
As far as cash goes, you're wrong. Patty is far ahead and has proven that she can raise money.

Posted by: StPaul_DFLer | January 31, 2006 04:30 PM

I informally canvassed the DFL activists in my CD6 exurban district. These are pretty moderate folks in term of DFL activists,some corprate types, a few gun owners and some self employed, so conventional wisdom would give him pretty strong support with this crowd. I couldnt find one who was ready to go out and volunteer for Tinklenberg.
Everybody said they would vote for him if he was the D on the ticket. A few of them couldnt bring themselves to vote for Janet Robert in 02.

Patty will have an absolute army of volunteers, El would end up having to pay for it.
I think El kind of wrecked his chances when he did his "I'm a different kind of democrat" press confernce. He's been trying to prove he's not a DINO ever since. That stuff may play well to the independant/ moderate to slightly conservative elements in the district, but he turned off the base. With out the base, his ground battle will be anemic at best.

Patty won in several precincts that went for Bush , so at least some republicans were willing to split their ticket when she was on it. I very much doubt it was Dems crossing over to vote for Bush. Fact is she has a certain magic, cause it wasnt a well oiled campaign machine that threatened Kennedy in 04. We can count on the machine being perfectly tuned this time around.

Posted by: Anonymous | January 31, 2006 05:27 PM

I understand from friends in the DoT that when Tinklenberg was transport commissioner, there was talk that he brought in a bunch of his people, did poorly, and left with his people and thicker wallets at the end of the Ventura admin. There was a perception that he wasn't as into the mission of developing MN transportation infrastructure as he was into more immediate gains.

He opposes legal abortion and supports a federal gay marriage ban.

While I think we need more Methodists in politics, especially on the left, I am convinced that Wetterling would be a better Congressperson for Minnesota and for America than Tinklenberg.

Posted by: Jerad | January 31, 2006 07:01 PM

Wetterling is proving to be not very smart. She couldnt even beat a very weak mark Kennedy. She is a political oppurtunist. using the disappearance of her son for political gain. She and Cindy Sheescam go hand in hand.

Posted by: Buchananite | January 31, 2006 11:39 PM

The post by Buchananite shows what kind of assholes are willing to spread lies for the Republicans. Here's a take on the poll I was talking about earlier. It is lifted from Checks and Balances:

In a poll of 400 Sixth Congressional Districts residents with a margin of error of +/-4%, Wetterling beats all comers in a head-to-head match-up. The poll was weighted heavily in favor of Republican voters with 40% represented and only 28% being Democratic voters. Of the respondents 42% percent self-identified as Conservative, 24% self identified as Liberal and 29% self-identified as Moderates.

Now we know her critics will be quick to refer to Wetterling as a candidate who sticks her finger in the wind to determine her direction or as a candidate who needs a poll to help her make a decision. But we will ask with a straight face what candidate does not poll and we will say that particular candidate will likely always be just a candidate and not a officeholder.

In hard name identification Wetterling polled at 76% while Elwyn Tinklenberg barely made double digits at 15%. In the break down:

Of the respondents, only 4% had never heard of Wetterling and 22% did not know enough to form an opinion, compared to 45% had never heard of Tinklenberg, and of those who had, 40% did not know enough to form an opinion.

At the beginning of the survey respondents were asked their preferences in head-to-head match-ups against the field of Republicans and the first cut is as follows:

Patty Wetterling 43%

Michele Bachmann 38%

Patty Wetterling 41%

Phil Krinkie 33%

Patty Wetterling 41%

Jim Knoblach 34%

Elwyn Tinklenberg 22%

Michele Bachmann 35%

Elwyn Tinklenberg 21%

Phil Krinkie 25%

(The Tinklenberg/Knoblach question was not included to conserve time.)

One interesting facet of this poll was that Wetterling out polled her Republican opponents significantly with Independents while Tinklenberg trailed the Republicans.

The poll then retested respondents after informing them of issues Wetterling opponents may use as negative attacks during a campaign, including abortion, guns, reentering the 6th race and going back on her word – and found no footing on those issues. This in effect is an attempt to push poll. As they tested potential attack points it was clear nothing moved these possible voters from their prior positions and even improved Wetterling’s support and diminished her opponents support.

We have said before that the negative attacks against Wetterling in 2004 may have created fertile ground for a backlash effect that any candidate directly or through surrogates may mount. Wetterling challengers should heed this warning, attack Wetterling at your own peril.

Patty Wetterling 43%

Michele Bachmann 36%

Patty Wetterling 42%

Phil Krinkie 31%

(The Wetterling/Knoblach question was not included to conserve time.)

Posted by: StPaul_DFLer | February 1, 2006 01:31 PM

With the poll numbers I posted above and the finances I'm posting below, would it not be insane for Patty not to run and the 6th CD DFL should be behind her all the way.

El does not fair well anywhere. The guy just didn't work.

It also explains why the Republicans are scared of her. As Buchannite shows, they are willing to lie and throw mud at her before she even decides. He should be paying attention to that freakshow they got going on GOP side.

Elwyn Tinklenberg – Democrat

Total receipts - $302,622

Total expenditures - $117,993

Cash on-hand - $184,628

Patty Wetterling – Democrat

U.S. Senate Total receipts - $965,855

U.S. Senate Total expenditures - $676,620

U.S. Senate Cash on-hand - $289,233

Posted by: StPaul_DFLer | February 1, 2006 01:36 PM

DFLer..what lie did I tell about Wetterling?..inform me please. These early polls mean nothing.. I find it very hard to believe that conservatives will support her. She and her ilk think she is untouchable because jacob went missing..she is fair game.

Posted by: Buchananite

It will be an interesting debate between Wetterling and Tinklenberg. On the abortion issue, Wetterling should be focusing on Emergency Contraception, family planning, abstinence only - condoms don't work sex ed, stem cell research and in vitro fertilization. These posts above were written before Elwyn Tinklenberg pulled his tacky to the extreme stunt of upstaging the message of Patty Wetterling's press conference.

Tinklenberg has now said on the record that he plans to abide to the DFL endorsement. If he doesn't get the endorsement, and runs in the primary, all these self-righteous statements he made will work against him.

There are more comments about Labor being peeved at Wetterling here.