The Daily Digest (Legislature returns this week, don’t eat the taconite)

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Big week ahead as the Minnesota Legislature returns on Tuesday with Democrats in control of the House, Senate and governor’s office for the first time in more than two decades.

Legislative previews

Pioneer Press. 2013 Legislature: It’s the DFL’s show, so what will they do?
Now in power, DFLers “will be under pressure to keep promises many of them made to overhaul taxes, create more good jobs and improve Minnesota’s schools.”

Star Tribune. GOP regroups, looking for way back to majority
“We like the opportunities that we’re going to have to point out the differences” with DFLers incoming House Republican leadersaid Rep. Kurt Daudt says.

MPR News. Minnesota Legislature preview: 10 issues to watch
Political reporters Tim Pugmire and Tom Scheck offer detailed looks at the key issues for lawmakers, from budget and taxes to a new health care insurance exchange.

Pugmire this morning also writes that the budget is the DFL’s top priority.

MPR’s Tom Scheck takes a look at the Economic Interest Statements filed by public officials and found that one in four statements filed by lawmakers “do not provide meaningful information that could alert the public to potential conflicts of interest.”

Stanek’s national voice?

Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek is quoted heavily in a Sunday Washington Post story on the Obama administration’s approach to gun control legislation. Stanek, mentioned as a possible GOP candidate for U.S. Senate or governor in 2014, attended a meeting last month with Vice President Joe Biden on gun issues. – Tom Scheck

Politics hard to stomach

The public and lobbyists who stop into DFL Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk’s office will see a bowl of taconite pellets.

Thumbnail image for taconite.JPGBakk, who represents the Iron Range, says he wants to keep the bowl out to remind the public of the importance of mining.

The bowl contains a warning — “Not Edible.” — posted after a former commissioner in former Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s administration almost popped a pellet in his mouth because he thought it was candy. – Tom Scheck