The days of large cranes and construction workers dominating the Minnesota Capitol will end later this year. A $300 million renovation project is to wrap up by Jan. 1, with construction officials saying the building will look pretty much done in October. The building has been mostly closed for more than a  year. (Forum News Service photo by Don Davis)

Political Chatter: Unified Groups Have Clout

People often complain about what their elected officials do, or do not do, but the Catholic Advocacy Network is trying to drive home the point that Minnesotans in general have the real say in government. “Many Catholics are experiencing a sense of political homelessness,” the group said in an email. “Neither major political party seems…
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Minnesota House Speaker Kurt Daudt, left, and Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk share a light moment Friday, July 15, 2016, before heading into negotiations that could lead to a special legislative session. (Forum News Service photo by Don Davis)

Governor, Leaders Say They Are Near Special Session Deal

The governor and top two legislative leaders say they tentatively agree to call Minnesota legislators back to St. Paul for a special legislative session the third week in August to pass tax and public works bills, but work remains before that can happen. After meeting two hours in private, Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton; Senate Majority…
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Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton looks on and Sen. Jeff Hayden uses his telephone Wednesday, June 15, 2016, as Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk briefs reporters on a meeting about setting up a special legislative sessin. (Forum News Service photo by Don Davis)

No Progress Reported In Special Session Talks

The most positive description of a high-level Wednesday meeting to set up a Minnesota special legislative session was that it “it was not as productive as I would have liked.” Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk, D-Cook, also said that “the tone of the speaker’s voice” was better than in previous meetings, even though no one…
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Top Minnesota Democrats brief reporters about a Tuesday, June 7, 2016, discussion on a potential special legislative session. From left are House Minority Leader Paul Thissen, Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk and Lt. Gov. Tina Smith. (Forum News Service photo by Don Davis)

Trust Lacking, But Minnesota Leaders Hope For Special Session

Minnesota’s political leaders say they have a problem trusting each other, but on Tuesday they pledged to continue trying to pass failed tax and public works legislation. “We all have trust issues with one another,” Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton said. House Speaker Kurt Daudt, R-Crown, agreed, adding: “I think the governor hasn’t really kept his…
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Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton says on Tuesday, June 7, 2016, he is "discouraged" dealing with House Republicans as they consider a special session. (Forum News Service photo by Don Davis)

Dayton: ‘We Can’t Agree On Anything’

Gov. Mark Dayton on Tuesday morning expressed hope that he would be able to call a special legislative session to finish work Minnesota lawmakers failed to accomplish as their regular session ended last month, but used words like “discouraged” more than optimistic comments when talking to reporters. “This is why I get discouraged about the…
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