Pat Kessler

web pat kessler Pat Kessler
Pat Kessler knows Minnesota politics.

He’s been on the beat longer than any other TV reporter in the Twin Cities, covering state government, politics, campaigns and conventions since 1984.

Pat “pulls back the curtain” on what’s happening in government with stories both amusing and annoying, as well as reporting information you need to know to keep up on the issues that affect you most.

And Pat’s popular “Reality Check” segments separate fact from fiction in a political world that is often more fiction than fact.

Pat studied English and journalism at Macalester College in St. Paul.

He’s an avid reader, involved in many local volunteer programs and exhibits a particular fondness for baseball.

Before joining WCCO-TV, Pat was a reporter for Minnesota Public Radio, and a technical assistant for “A Prairie Home Companion” with Garrison Keillor.

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most recent stories2 Pat Kessler

(credit: Tom Lynn/Getty Images)

Walker Reminds Voters Of Union Wins As He Enters 2016 Race

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker declared his candidacy for president on Monday, casting himself as a “fighter” who muscled through an aggressive conservative agenda in a state that typically supports Democrats.

07/13/2015

(credit: CBS)

Reality Check: Gov. Mark Dayton Faces Criticism For Cabinet Raises

DFL Governor Mark Dayton is not backing down from criticism over huge pay hikes he gave his Cabinet. He says Minnesota’s top officials make less than other states. The two-term Democratic Governor says Minnesota’s top officials are underpaid.

07/02/2015

(credit: CBS)

GOP Calls Dayton ‘Out Of Touch’ Following Cabinet Pay Hike

Gov. Mark Dayton was preparing to announce pay raises for his state agency commissioners as Republicans were warning exorbitant increases would become a campaign issue next year.

07/01/2015

(credit: CBS)

Minnesota Home Care Workers Getting A Pay Hike

Tens of thousands of home care workers in the state are getting a raise on Wednesday.

06/30/2015

(credit: Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Gay Marriage Opponents Pushing For Religious Exemption Bill

Critics of last week’s Supreme Court ruling to legalize same-sex marriage say they’re not done fighting.

06/29/2015

(credit: CBS)

Minnesota Couples Celebrate Supreme Court Marriage Ruling

Tens of thousands of people are expected to descend on Loring Park in Minneapolis this weekend to celebrate gay pride.

06/26/2015

(credit: CBS)

As SCOTUS Upholds Affordable Care Act, MN GOP Calls For MNsure’s Demise

The Supreme Court has upheld the nationwide tax subsidies under President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul, in a ruling that preserves health insurance for millions of Americans. The justices said in a 6-3 ruling Thursday that the subsidies that 8.7 million people currently receive to make insurance affordable do not depend on where they live, under the 2010 health care law.

06/25/2015

(credit: CBS)

Dayton Vows To Attend Hearing For Sex Offender Program

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton said Wednesday the state will appeal a federal court ruling declaring the state’s sex offender program unconstitutional.

06/24/2015

(credit: CBS)

MPCA Citizens’ Board Holds Last Meeting, Supporters Vow To Fight

Just two weeks after it was abolished by the Minnesota Legislature, an influential environmental citizen’s board held its last meeting on Tuesday.

06/23/2015

(credit: Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Hillary Clinton Fundraising In Minneapolis Monday

Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is in Minneapolis Monday night. It’s her first Minnesota visit since she declared her candidacy for 2016 last spring.

06/22/2015

(credit: CBS)

Reality Check: Minnesota’s Sex Offender Treatment Program

Minnesota’s sex offender treatment program is getting sharp scrutiny after a federal judge ruled it unconstitutional. It turns out that Minnesota locks up more dangerous sex offenders than almost anywhere else.

06/18/2015

(credit: Minnesota Vikings)

Vikings Announce U.S. Bank As Naming Rights Partner For New Stadium

The Vikings have announced U.S. Bank as the naming-rights partner for the forthcoming stadium in downtown Minneapolis. After anonymous sources first reported the naming rights to the Sports Business Journal, the team formally announced a 20-year investment from U.S. Bank for the new facility, which will be called “U.S. Bank Stadium.”

06/15/2015

(credit: CBS)

Minnesota’s New Memorial For Military Families The First Of Its Kind In U.S.

The State of Minnesota today dedicated the moving tribute to military families on the grounds of the Capitol building Saturday. It’s the first place in the country that honors the families of active military members and veterans.

06/13/2015

(credit: CBS)

Gov. Dayton Signs Bills, Avoiding Government Shutdown

Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton today signed into law the budget bills passed overnight by a Special Session of the Legislature, avoiding a partial state government shutdown.

06/13/2015

(credit: CBS)

Lawmakers Hold Dramatic Special Session

Minnesota lawmakers are holding a dramatic special legislative session Friday — three weeks after their regular session ended. Lawmakers are back in St. Paul to pass billions of dollars in budget bills to fund state government.

06/12/2015

(credit: CBS)

1-Day Special Session To Be Held Friday

Minnesota’s legislative leaders have come to an agreement on a one-day special session.

06/11/2015

(credit: CBS)

Former Treasurer: ‘It’s Wrong’ To Cut Auditor’s Office Duties

A former Minnesota State Treasurer said he supports efforts by State Auditor Rebecca Otto to push back against a new law that cuts some of the duties of her office.

06/10/2015

(credit: CBS)

Dayton: Special Session Called By End Of Week, Or Early Next Week

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton says he hopes to call a special session as soon as possible. Dayton says his office is working out the final details with Republican leaders to agree on the spending bills that fund state government.

06/09/2015

(credit: CBS)

Dayton Asks Lawmakers To Slow Down Auditor Changes

With thousands of state jobs in limbo, top lawmakers called it a week — with no deal to finish their work in a special session. Legislators now have just 25 days to reach a deal or parts of the government start shutting down on July 1.

06/05/2015

(credit: CBS)

Dayton To Stall Special Session Til Anti-State Auditor Law Repealed

Because of State Capitol construction disruption, the State Office Building will be home to the bare-bones special session. Preparations are underway to squeeze the House and Senate inside two small hearing rooms. But those details are looming large.

06/03/2015

(credit: CBS)

State Auditor Otto To Legislature: Don’t Let Private Firms Do My Work

Top state lawmakers say they are “very close” to an agreement to hold a special session in the next few days — but still no official word on when. Republicans and Democrats reached agreement Monday on an education spending bill that was causing the budget impasse. But there’s another issue that has the state auditor considering going to court.

06/02/2015

(credit: CBS)

Lawmakers Prepare For First Session Out Of Capitol Building Since 1881

Minnesota lawmakers will soon be meeting in special session, though Friday’s talks ended with no deal in place. It’s not clear whether they’ll plan to meet over the weekend to try to hammer out the details.

05/29/2015

(credit: CBS)

Daudt Visits Preschool To Highlight GOP Education Plan

Minnesota House Speaker Kurt Daudt visited a private St. Paul learning center for preschoolers Thursday, highlighting the centerpiece of the GOP education plan: Early learning scholarships. New Horizon Academy is settled in a working class St. Paul neighborhood where many families struggle.

05/28/2015

(credit: CBS)

Dayton And Lawmakers Refocus Budget Fight On Education

Wednesday evening, Minnesota’s top lawmakers started a new round of private talks about holding a special session of the Minnesota legislature.

05/27/2015

(credit: CBS)

After Dayton Vetoes, State Leaders Start Search For Way Out

Minnesota’s governor says he’s prepared to call a special session just as soon as top lawmakers smooth out their differences.

05/26/2015

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