The Daily Digest

The State Canvassing Board will meet today to discuss the number of frivolous challenges being made in the recount for governor. The meeting will be a showdown between canvassing board members who only want to consider legitimate ballot challenges and Republican Tom Emmer’s campaign who wants the board to review all challenges. The issue for the board to grapple with is whether the fear of a lawsuit by the Emmer campaign outweighs the worry over time to look at the ballots.

The other newsworthy nugget is that it will put Emmer campaign attorney Eric Magnuson at odds with statements he made when he was on the State Canvassing Board in 2008. He criticized the campaigns for putting forward frivolous challenges. He’s now in the position of defending the practice. The meeting is at 2pm.

Democrat Mark Dayton’s team retracted their frivolous challenges.

There has been no big swing in the vote totals after the fourth day of the recount.

Emmer’s attorney says he believes there will be enough challenges, frivolous and legitimate, to give Emmer the lead.

AP reported earlier this week that not all challenges are equal in this race.

George Soros and Bill Clinton will hold a fundraiser for Dayton’s recount efforts on December 13th in New York City.

MinnPost also reports that Dayton met with former Gov. Arne Carlson for advice about doing the job.

Under the Dome

The State Budget forecast is $6.2 billion in the red.

State Finance Officials say the state has a surplus of $399 million in the current budget. But they say those funds have strings attached and can’t be spent or the deficit in the next biennium will be even bigger than the $6.2 billion projected budget deficit.

The news means the state’s fiscal outlook is even worse than February projections. The next governor and lawmakers will have to come up with significant spending cuts, tax increases or a mix of both to erase the deficit.

Democrat Mark Dayton says he’ll continue to push his plan to tax top earners. He also said the deficit shows a need to have a governor in place as soon as possible.

GOP legislative leaders say they won’t support a tax increase of any kind.

The disagreement already shows there are widely varying views on how to fix the budget.

Republican Tom Emmer refused to talk with reporters about the forecast or the recount on Thursday. His campaign released a statement praising Gov. Pawlenty and criticizing Democrats.

Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty says he’s leaving the state with a surplus.

The forecast also shows Minnesota’s economy continues to grow but at a much slower pace.

Budget stress forces the U of M to shut down over the holidays.

Ramsey, Anoka and Washington Counties are all pursuing the Vikings and a stadium.

Congress

President Obama and the GOP are in quiet talks to extend the Bush tax cuts but President Obama wants the deal to include an extension of jobless aid.

China will tighten its monetary policy next year.

The House voted to censure New York Democrat Charlie Rangel.

The U of M’s Humphrey Institute is talking to Jim Oberstar about a possible role there.

The expiring federal jobless benefits won’t impact Minnesota yet.

Tim Walz was named to the House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee.

GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann reports having $2 million left in the bank. The New York Times takes a look at her spending.

The Hill suggests Bachmann’s DFL opponent, Tarryl Clark, will make another run for Congress.

CBS News says Tea Party Caucus members like Bachmann requested more than $1 billion in earmarks.

Pawlenty for Prez Watch

CNN takes a look at where Pawlenty spent his federal PAC money.

Mitt Romney raised more than Pawlenty and Sarah Palin.

Sarah Palin signed roughly 1,000 books in three hours in Iowa.

  • Ralph Crammedin

    Emmer’s attorney says he believes there will be enough challenges, frivolous and legitimate, to give Emmer the lead.

    friv·o·lous (frv-ls)

    adj.

    1. Unworthy of serious attention; trivial: a frivolous novel.

    2. Inappropriately silly: a frivolous purchase.

    [Middle English, probably from Latin frvolus, of little value, probably from frire, to crumble.]

    frivo·lous·ly adv.

    frivo·lous·ness n.

    Re·pub·li·can (R-pb-lcn)

    adj.

    1. see frivolous

  • Chris

    “Tim Walz was named to the House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee.”

    According to that list, it looks like all of Minnesota’s DFL House members are on the Steering and Policy. That’s interesting.