Wisconsin’s state budget will be nearly $1.8 billion in the red by mid-2017 based on a new estimate Monday, providing Democrats with more fodder to argue that Gov. Scott Walker and Republicans in control of the Legislature have mismanaged the state’s finances.
Several upcoming events on the calendar could help energize campaigns for Minnesota governor and legislative offices. They’ll drive the messages voters will hear from candidates and their allies over the next two months.
The seat in Minnesota’s 6th congressional district is completely up for grabs, with Rep. Michele Bachmann opting not to run for re-election. While the District is heavily Republican, two years ago businessman and Democrat Jim Graves came within one percentage point of beating Bachmann.
Gov. Mark Dayton and Republican challenger Jeff Johnson are getting big infusions of public money for their campaigns. Dayton received $534,000 in public subsidies in his bid for a second term, while Johnson took in about $389,000.
A new television ad from Minnesota Republican U.S. Senate candidate Mike McFadden accuses Democratic Sen. Al Franken of voting almost 100 percent of the time with President Obama. The ad, with a humorous tone, ties Franken to Obama with a very Minnesotan insult: a Franken look-alike struggling to back his boat into the water.
Minnesota’s Supreme Court has dismissed a voter’s call to have Rep. Bob Barrett removed from the November ballot over his residency. Valerie Mondor had petitioned the court to toss Barrett from the election.
Republicans closed ranks Wednesday behind the winner of Tuesday’s primary election for governor. Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson won a decisive primary victory over three opponents. He’ll face incumbent Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton. Johnson promises a campaign of ideas, not smears.
The two-man race to decide which Republican will challenge Sen. Al Franken has split the party’s former leaders. Businessman and political newcomer Mike McFadden has the backing of former Republican Sens. Norm Coleman and Rudy Boschwitz.
A residency dispute involving a Minnesota legislator has landed in court and could put a Republican-held seat in contention at a time when the party is fighting to wrest chamber control from Democrats.
U.S. Congresswoman Michele Bachmann says she is not necessarily thinking about running for president again, disputing a recent report that suggested she was. Bachmann said last year she didn’t plan to run for re-election for her Minnesota seat in congress this year.
Republican candidate Kurt Zellers said Wednesday he had signed a conservative group’s pledge that rules out any net tax increases and most new fees as budget options if he becomes Minnesota governor, a position he reinforces in a television ad ahead of next month’s wide-open GOP primary.
On its current trajectory, Minnesota’s next two-year state budget will top the $40 billion mark. The Republicans seeking to defeat Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton say they would slam the brakes on spending if they’re put in charge.
A national Republican group is promising “significant” spending to support Minnesota Republicans’ effort to retake the state House.
The City of Stillwater is taking a controversial stance on who they want in parades. The city has upped its entry fee to $1,000 for politicians wanting to walk in this weekend’s Log Jam Parade, according to reports.
Both political parties see opportunity in President Barack Obama’s two-day visit to Minnesota that starts Thursday. For Democrats, their party’s biggest name will draw attention to a signature initiative: the large, upcoming bump in the state’s minimum wage. For Republicans, his presence alone will give them a tangible way to connect targeted Democratic candidates to a struggling president as campaign season intensifies.