The Weekend Digest: 10-8-06

Republican candidate Alan Fine and his past lead the digest. The Star Tribune reports on Fine’s messy divorce and how he had his record expunged. The last two graphs may be the most interesting considering how outraged he was by his DFL opponent’s “character issues” :

Fine said it would be “irresponsible” for the newspaper to publish an article about the arrest because it would hurt his child. “I’ve done nothing wrong,” Fine said.

After state Rep. Keith Ellison won the DFL nomination, Fine launched a persistent attack on his character, focusing on his past ties to the Nation of Islam. Fine has repeatedly said “character matters.”

The New York Times profiles Ellison this weekend and unveils this interesting nugget:

“If he wins, he will take the oath of office on a Koran,” Ali Ahmed, a social services worker, said as he wandered through the Karmel Square mall, a popular shopping and social destination for Somali immigrants.

The scandal surrounding Mark Foley is still in the news and the New York Times says one Minnesotan will get plenty of attention in the House panel investigation:

One person emerging as a subject of interest is Christy Surprenant, the former director of administration in the speaker’s office, who was Mr. Palmer’s assistant. Ms. Surprenant, who later worked for President Bush’s campaign in her native Minnesota, could not be reached for comment on Saturday.

Patty Wetterling, the Democrat running for Congress in Minnesota’s 6th, gave the Democratic radio address on Saturday. She received plenty of press on the subject. The Washington Post, USA Today, the New York Times and the AP have stories on the address.

The Star Tribune has a look at the race in the 6th. They also profile Wetterling and her GOP opponent, Michele Bachmann.

The St. Cloud Times has a story on the Saturday debate between Bachmann, Wetterling and Independence Party member John Binkowski.

The Pi Press has a Saturday story saying Bachmann is stepping up her criticism of Wetterling.

The blog, Bachmann v Wetterling, says White House political director Karl Rove will hold a Washington fundraiser for Bachmann this week.

Maybe she’ll ask Rove some advice on how to handle the Foley flap. If so, she may want to share with the other GOP candidates in Minnesota. WCCO‘s Pat Kessler has a story saying a bunch of GOP candidates are being asked about it.

CQ Politics says the GOP is spending buckets of cash, $8 million in one day, on behalf of GOP House candidates.

The Star Tribune profiles Amy Klobuchar, the DFL candidate for Minnesota’s U.S. Senate seat. The paper also says she could do something that hasn’t been done in Minnesota for some time.

The strib’s Eric Black fact-checks Klobuchar’s latest ad.

T.W. Budig has a profile of Klobuchar, Republican Mark Kennedy and I-P candidate Robert Fitzgerald.

KARE-11 has a story on the ad battles in the senate race.

Forum Communications has a story saying Kennedy and Klobuchar differ over the war in Iraq.

The Crookston Daily Times has a story on Kennedy feeling at home in Crookston.

The Pi Press takes a look at where the candidates for U.S. Senate, Governor and Congress stand on embryonic stem cells.

Forum Communications takes a look at where the candidates for governor stand on taxes.

The L.A. Times mentions Minnesota in its roundup of the nation’s races for governor.

Republican Governor Tim Pawlenty says Ainsworth is committed to reopening its lumber facilities in Minnesota.

DFLer Mike Hatch campaigns on the Iron Range this week.

Hatch also lost his battle to unseat a judge.

The Star Tribune’s Dane Smith tells tv viewers to get ready for Hatch and Pawlenty cut-outs.

Get out the vote efforts may determine who wins the race for governor. The Washington Post looks at Minnesota in a story about Democrats GOTV efforts.

The New York Times says labor unions are investing heavily in Minnesota as well.

Rebecca Otto, a DFLer running for state auditor, campaigned in Bemidji.

Finally, the Washington Post mentions retiring DFL Congressman Martin Sabo in a story on President Bush’s decision to ignore parts of the Homeland Security law.

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