As November’s city election approaches, the Minneapolis mayoral lineup gets scrambled once again as a top candidate drops out.
And policy enacted in the last legislative session continues to reverberate through the state as mayors applaud some extra funding and the state revises a long-running health program to work with the Affordable Care Act.
In Washington, a Senate proposal is aimed at heading off a big increase in interest rates for student loans.
Schiff ends Minneapolis mayoral bid, endorses Hodges (MPR News)
Gary Schiff is dropping out of the Minneapolis mayoral race after a disappointing third-place finish at the DFL convention last week. He’s endorsing his Minneapolis City Council colleague Betsy Hodges. Schiff said Hodges shares many of his progressive values.
Minn. mayors praise boost in state funding (MPR News)
An $80 million increase in state aid to cities has some mayors making plans for projects they delayed in more austere times and looking forward to a year without local property tax increases.
State rolls out MinnesotaCare 2.0 (Politics in Minnesota)
While much of the attention last legislative session was focused on creation of the state’s health exchange, the long-running MinnesotaCare program was also heavily revised, partly in order to align the program with Affordable Care Act requirements.
Minnesota sets up a trade office in Germany (MPR News)
Gov. Dayton’s trade mission to Europe appears to be bearing fruit, as the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development announced plans to open a trade office in Germany. Dayton is in the midst of a trade mission to Germany, Sweden and Norway.
Bipartisan proposal on student loans circulating (Associated Press)
A deal to prevent subsidized student loan rates from doubling appears to be in the works in the U.S. Senate. If Congress doesn’t act by July 1, interest rates on subsidized Stafford loans will increase from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent.
House farm-bill debate starts smoothly, but 200 amendments await (MinnPost)
The vote could come as early as this week, although conservative groups have opposed spending in the bill and some liberals have criticized cuts to food stamps.
FBI says it uses surveillance drones on U.S. soil (Reuters via Pioneer Press)
FBI Director Robert Mueller admitted Wednesday that the FBI uses drones on American soil. He said the practice is “very, very minimal way and very seldom.”
Tea Partiers at U.S. Capitol pay homage to Bachmann (Star Tribune)
Rep. Michele Bachmann may be leaving Congress, but she insisted at a Tea Party rally on Wednesday that she’ll be involved in politics for a long time. The Capitol Hill rally was held to protest a proposed immigration overhaul and IRS targeting of conservative groups.
Obama Readying Emissions Limits on Power Plants (New York Times)
As part of an overhaul of climate change policy, President Barack Obama plans to limit Co2 emissions from electric power plants, which account for about 40 percent of greenhouse gases released in the United States.
Senators Close to a Deal on Border Security (New York Times)
A provision to further strengthen border security is in the works, which could address concerns from some conservatives and help the immigration overhaul move forward in the Senate.