Norm Coleman rules out 2014 run (MPR News)
“Former GOP Sen. Norm Coleman announced late Thursday on Twitter that he won’t run for political office in 2014. Coleman announced earlier this year that he would not run against DFL Sen. Al Franken. Now, he’s ruled out a run for governor.”
Minnesota Senate, following House, passes health insurance exchange bill (MPR News)
“The Senate Thursday night passed its version of an online health insurance marketplace expected to serve more than one million Minnesotans. Lawamakers will meet in coming days to resolve differences in the House and Senate bills.”
“The House Elections Committee backed a wide-ranging bill that would increase contribution and spending limits for candidates for statewide office and Legislature and require more disclosure from groups that spend money to influence elections.”
“Amid the ongoing lockout of orchestra musicians, 100 lawmakers asked for a legislative audit of the orchestra’s finances. They say the public has a right to know how the orchestra’s spent $16 million in public money the past two years.”
Lack of skilled workers only part of Minn. jobs problem (MPR News)
“In nursing, industrial engineering and manufacturing production in Minnesota, many employers indeed have had difficulty filling positions but often for reasons only partly attributable to lack of skilled worker, a new state report finds.”
“Last year, Minnesota citizens voted no on putting a gay marriage ban in the Constitution. Thursday’s rally was to pressure lawmakers against taking the next step: Legalizing same sex marriage.”
Gay marriage bill looks likely to clear first bar (Pioneer Press)
Most in the House Civil Law Committee say they will vote to repeal state law defining marriage as between opposite-sex couples only. The bill is set for hearings next Tuesday in the House panel and in the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Support is strong for legalizing immigrants (Star Tribune)
“A clear majority of Minnesotans favor some system of legalizing undocumented immigrants, according to a Star Tribune Minnesota Poll.”
“The Atlanta Falcons must pay 80 percent of a new $1 billion NFL stadium. That, along with an electronic pull tabs stadium financing shortfall, is prompting one lawmaker to consider whether the Vikings stadium deal should be reconfigured.”
Obama turns on charm in effort to end gridlock (Washington Post)
Latinos gain political muscle, and fund-raisers show how (New York Times)
Poll: Hillary would be tops in 2016 (CBS News)
Dayton on archbishop meeting: not much marriage talk
DFL Gov. Mark Dayton hosted a private breakfast Thursday with Archbishop John Nienstedt and Catholic Bishops from around Minnesota, but according to the governor, they did not spend a lot of time discussing same-sex marriage.
Nienstedt was a leading supporter of last fall’s failed campaign to amend the state constitution with a ban on same-sex marriage. Catholic leaders are now lining up against the proposed legislation to legalize gay marriage in Minnesota.
Dayton said only aspects of the issue came up, including a concern about being punished for applying their religious principles.
On other issues, he said the archbishop supports a minimum wage increase and more funding for families on public assistance. Dayton said he also heard concerns about the impact of proposed anti-bullying legislation on private schools. — Tim Pugmire