Gov. Dayton and GOP legislative leaders are scheduled to meet privately at 12:30 today. Dayton and lawmakers are no closer to a budget deal.
The Legislative Commission on Planning and Fiscal Policy focused more on standard talking points than on bridging any differences on the budget. In fact, a large part of the meeting focused over whether Dayton’s commissioners are partisan.
GOP Sen. Mike Parry told MPR News that Gov. Dayton is worried that the GOP budget will “work well.”
Shutdown worries have prompted MnSCU to call an emergency meeting for this morning.
MPR reports that nearly every lawmaker claimed thousands of dollars in expense payments despite the state’s budget problems.
32 members of the Senate took the maximum in per diem payments (23 Republicans and nine DFLers). Rep. Roger Chamberlain, R-Lino Lakes, took no per diem.
40 members of the House took the maximum in per diem payments (23 DFLers and 17 Republicans). Rep. Tina Liebling, DFL-Rochester and Rep. Steve Simon, DFL-St. Louis Park, took no per diem.
Under the Dome
The push is on to get a constitutional amendment to require people to show photo identification to vote on the 2012 ballot. Supporters say they would prefer the Legislature pass the amendment next session not in a special session.
The state has a high rate of underwater homes.
Delta announced that it will move Minnesota jobs and consolidate facilities in Atlanta.
Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission Chair Ted Mondale tells the Pi Press that the stadium talks are at an impasse.
Target has been urged to change its tune on political giving.
The feds approved disaster declarations for Anoka and Hennepin Counties.
President Obama met with Germany Chancellor Angela Merkel.
A few Senate members introduced a six month delay of debit “swipe rules.”
Politico reports that GOP Rep. Chip Cravaack spent $1,400 in taxpayer money on an automobile lease. His office called the figure “inflated” because of initial purchasing costs.
Race for President
Tim Pawlenty emphasized tax cuts and reduced regulation in a speech in Chicago.
Obama adviser David Axelrod criticized Pawlenty. He said it would have served Pawlenty well to handle the finances of his state during his time as governor.
Washington Post economics blogger Ezra Klein called Pawlenty’s plan “a joke” and said his vision for five percent growth over ten years is unrealistic.
The Washington Post says Christian conservatives are flocking to GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann.
Bachmann is one of five candidates to sign on to an Iowa Tea Party bus tour. Pawlenty has not committed to the event.
The Club for Growth criticizes Mitt Romney.
A Quinninpiac Poll shows Romney with a lead.
Romney is also leading in a South Carolina poll.