Around MN: A return to civility?

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Two points do not make a trend, but it is worth noting that the town halls hosted by U.S. Reps. Betty McCollum and Chip Cravaack last night were civil. To add to the warm and fuzzy feeling of civil discourse, these meetings were happening as our neighbors across the river were breaking voter turnout records.

In a Deer River cafeteria, Cravaack helped to set the tone. MPR’s Dan Kraker reports the congressman “told the crowd he has bucked his Republican Party to support labor unions. He also struck a bipartisan note by acknowledging that Republicans are equally to blame for the country’s debt crisis.”

Cravaack “warned that almost half of what the government spends is borrowed, and almost half of what is borrowed is borrowed from foreign governments. But he continued to argue that taxes should not be raised to help balance the budget,” wrote the Duluth News Tribune.

The Pioneer Press covered the McCollum meeting: “The crowd of about 150 was largely friendly and civil to the Democratic representative, but they were passionate about their opposition to the conservative policies flowing from the Republican-controlled Congress and what they consider an all-too-conciliatory White House.”

Also on MN Today

Bachmann “cautiously optimistic” about Straw Poll

Just four days before the first major test of strength among the Republican contenders in the 2012 presidential race, Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann sounded a hopeful note that the Ames Straw Poll would cement her status as the front-runner in Iowa (Real Clear Politics).

Politico: For Tim Pawlenty, it’s Ames or bust

Obama forsakes Air Force One for bus tour

Who says presidents live the life of luxury?The White House announced on Tuesday that President Obama would travel around the Midwest next week, including Minnesota, on a “three-day economic bus tour,” hitting the hotspots of southern Minnesota, northeastern Iowa and western Illinois.Really? The president? On a bus? (The Caucus)

Ellison to attend iftar at White House

Reps. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) will attend President Barack Obama’s White House iftar on Wednesday evening, the daily meal when Muslims break their fasts during the holy month of Ramadan (Roll Call).

Wet, hot summer causing headaches for some farmers

This summer has been hot and wet. Good news for some crops. Bad news for others. Most of the wheat in our area is usually harvested by now. This year that’s not the case (WDAY).

Burger begins work on new Bemidji documentary

The success of the documentary “Bemidji Between the Wars,” inspired by old film footage discovered by Bud Woodard, has prompted a sequel.Gary Burger started filming Tuesday for the second chapter — Bemidji from 1946 to Nov. 22, 1963, the day President John F. Kennedy was assassinated (Bemidji Pioneer).

Wisconsin residents reporting black bears, bobcats

The first year of an online site developed to collect reports of black bear and bobcat sightings from Wisconsin citizens produced more than 800 reports. This information has been valuable in documenting presence and range expansion for both species, according to wildlife biologists (Outdoors with Sam Cook).

Minnesota investigates anthrax case: no evidence of terrorism

FBI joined in inquiry, but officials say there’s no evidence of terrorism (Star Tribune).

MN Scenes

Canal Park Sunrise by Ken Kvam via MPR’s Flickr pool

Canal Park Sunrise

“I almost missed this shot. As I headed back to my hotel after shooting some sunrise shots, I gave the lighthouse a couple last looks. Then I realized that the sun had broken out of the clouds, and if I lined my position up just right I could put it behind the light. It ended up my favorite of the shoot.”

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