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Joe Atkins

Jul 11, 2012

Health care battles roll on

Obamacare is here to stay. That is the apparent takeaway from the U.S. Supreme Court ruling last month that largely upheld the 2010 federal health care overhaul.

Apr 27, 2012

Meanwhile, outside the spotlight

While legislative leaders haggled in private regarding the 2012 session’s marquee legislation, rank-and-file legislators spent long hours on the floors of the House and Senate processing members’ pet bills.

Feb 16, 2012

House GOPers sign onto exchange bill

House Taxes Chairman Greg Davids, Health and Human Services Finance Chairman Jim Abeler and Commerce Committee Chairman Joe Hoppe have signed onto a health insurance exchange bill

Feb 10, 2012

Shadow of Brodkorb still hangs over Senate

Nearly two months after a December whirlwind that saw Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch and her entire leadership team resign, the chamber’s Republican majority has moved into the 2012 session and put the upheaval in its rear-view mirror. Almost.

Feb 3, 2012

Tribal gaming dollars go bipartisan

Indian tribes have been a powerful force in Minnesota politics for nearly two decades, bankrolling major political party groups with hundreds of thousands of dollars for their campaigns. In 2011 they spread their money almost evenly between DFLers and Republicans.

Jan 30, 2012

Dayton: Legislation could be needed on exchange

In the past, Dayton has said his administration has the authority to move forward on an exchange, a process that he has delegated to a broad task force charged with making recommendations and studying its implementation.

Nov 9, 2011

Rixmann a growing force among political donors

Brad Rixmann likes to say he was dragged into politics “kicking and screaming.” Just five years ago, Rixmann, the founder and CEO of Pawn America had been at the Capitol only a few times as a child.

Feb 18, 2011

Brod and Sviggum recommended for U of M Board of Regents

Retired Republican Rep. Laura Brod and former GOP House Speaker Steve Sviggum were both recommended for spots on the University of Minnesota's Board of Regents - despite originally seeking the same seat on the body. They face a vote from the full Legislature Monday.

Feb 2, 2011

Tech consolidation bill gets union pushback

During the 2008-09 biennium, Minnesota spent just over $360 million for information technology services, including software, hardware, contractors and personnel. State workers use more than 32,000 computers to do their jobs, according to a survey conducted last year by the Office of Enterprise Technology. The Amateur Sports Commission, for instance, has three computers, while the Department of Cor[...]

Sep 10, 2010

PCR is sorely missed in lege races

Two weeks before Minnesota's political contribution refund (PCR) program expired, Rep. Julie Bunn, DFL-Lake Elmo, and about nine volunteers unleashed a full-tilt fundraising drive.

Jul 16, 2010

Unions, biz offer first look at lege race spending

While the gubernatorial campaigns and the legislative caucuses are attracting most of the money and attention in the current election cycle, legislative candidates in competitive districts are also getting some measure of love from the PAC donors who have weighed in with their first finance reports of 2010.

Apr 7, 2010

House DFL contemplates a world after Margaret

As the 86th Minnesota Legislature commences its last lap, most members think the session is likelier to end with a whimper than a bang. Barring the unexpected — the undoing of Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s $2.7 billion in unallotments by the Minnesota Supreme Court, or a holdup in the federal passage of additional FMAP health care dollars — all that’s really left is the resolution of another $155 mi[...]

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