Update: We have no idea what G.R. Anderson was smoking when he wrote his Minnpost article which posits this race as a model of civility. Sounds like neither he nor Hamline prof David Schlutz has ever seen a Davis television ad or press release or read any of the district dailies
Since Davis doesn't have any money to advertise in Twin Cities' media markets, it's quite likely neither has. Trust them: they're experts. Joel Kramer pays good money for this tripe? [end update]
The Mankato Free Press reports in Mock elections give students taste of voting:
After months of preparation — both in and out of the classroom — Dakota Meadows and Mankato East hosted mock elections on Thursday. Dakota Meadows’ election, coordinated through National Student/Parent Mock Election, was decidedly in favor of Obama, who garnered 347 votes to McCain’s 153. In the U.S. Senate race, Franken won by just eight votes while Tim Walz, in the U.S. House race, won in a landslide with 75 percent of the vote. Results from Mankato East’s mock election, through the Youth Leadership Initiative, weren’t announced until this morning.
KEYC-TV covers the same story in Kids Take Part in Mock Election.
Walz has been on the campaign trail with Franken this week. In Franken, Walz rally DFL faithful in Owatonna, the Owatonna People's Press reports that a crowd of 175 gathered at the local Elks Club. KEYC-TV say in Franken Rallies with Walz in Mankato:
Al Franken made a campaign stop in Mankato today.The senate candidate was joined by Congressman Tim Walz and Senator Amy Klobuchar at MSU.During ''For the Middle Class, For a Change'' rally, Franken said he plans on helping Minnesotans and Americans reach for what he called the ''promise of America,'' something he says has become a distant reality over the last 8 years.Al Franken says, ''What I believe is that what this election is about and what the next 4-8 years are gonna be about is bridging that chasm and fulfilling once and for all the promise of America.''The team started their campaign earlier in the day with stops in Rochester, Owatonna, and Faribault.
The Mankato Free Press profiles Brian Davis. Nugget:
He’s an opponent of abortion and gay marriage, is doubtful that fossil fuel consumption is the primary reason for global climate change and opposes embryonic stem cell research. He wants to make the Bush tax cuts permanent, would like to eliminate the estate tax and would be interested in studying a nationwide sales tax as a replacement for income taxes.
Jeepers. Didn't Davis tell the Post Bulletin just a couple of day ago that he'd only mentioned the sales tax "on one occasion"?
Davis's pivot makes this statement in the MFP profile all the more ironic:
“Minnesota is a great place, and a lot of people look at the candidates for who they are,” he said. “And they may not agree with them on every issue, but they feel they can trust that person to be straight with them
And we suspect that those in Southern Minnesota's renewable energy industry will raise their eyebrows at this, given the importance of the production tax credit:
He also said he’s opposed on principle to the numerous tax credits available to individuals and businesses, something he considers government micro-managing of the economy.
And when it comes to PAYGO, in Brian Davis's world, evasive is the new straight shooting:
Davis also doesn’t say whether he would support the pay-as-you-go budget rules — a strategy to reduce budget deficits by requiring that any new spending increases or tax cuts be offset with spending cuts or tax increases in other parts of the budget: “That’s one strategy.”
The companion profile for Walz, Walz hasn't slowed down, was published in yesterday's Free Press
MFP reader Jim Ackil writes in Walz helps environment:
. . .In his first term in the United States Congress, Minnesota’s First District Representative Tim Walz has earned the support of two nonpartisan environmental groups, the League of Conservative Voters and the Sierra Club. Both organizations are endorsing Walz for a second term.
LCV President Gene Karpinski said, “Congressman Walz has done a great job of reaching across the aisle and working with other freshmen members of congress to promote bi-partisan legislation that will make a real impact on the environment and the economy. He has bright new ideas for his next term and will continue to be a strong ally for clean energy in Congress. He has supported groundbreaking initiatives that will end our addiction to oil, invest in renewable energy sources and create jobs right here at home.”
I hope others will join me in voting for Walz so that he can continue this good work.
CQ Politics observes Democrats Could Make History With Big Back-to-Back Gains. As we posted earlier this morning, CQP had this to say about the MN-01 race:
The Republican Party’s endorsed candidate, oncologist and neophyte politician Brian Davis, has not gained much traction against freshman Walz. The incumbent has a serious financial lead in the district, which runs the width of the southern part of the state.
The 2008 race stands in sharp contrast with that of 2006. CQPolitics and other political handicappers have moved their predictions steadily toward the incumbent as this year's Election Day draws near. Two years ago, the race was red hot, with media and third party groups drawn to the district as Gutknecht and Walz duked it out. This year? Barely on the radar.
In the netroots, Jeff Rosenberg revives his analysis From the archives: Walz’s secret to success in CD1. It's a solid piece, though we tend to shun labeling anything about successful campaigns as "secret." It's no secret that the Walz camapign is smart, strategic, well-funded and firmly planted in the grassroots.
Gustavus Adolphus College talked to Walz campaign worker Alex Knutsen in Alumni Hit the Campaign Trail:
Alex Knutsen has been hard at work for months working to re-elect Congressman Tim Walz in the first district. He considered jobs in the corporate sector, but is confident that his choice to work for a campaign following graduation was the right decision. He says this job has taught him that, "compensation for the effort you put in comes in many forms."
Between the long hours and grueling schedule, especially as campaigns make their last push before voters hit the polls, Knutsen finds many aspects of his work rewarding. "[The knowledge that] the work I do directly contributes to the encouragement of ideas, to the empowerment of others, and to the process of making laws work for people, means more to me than the sort of rewards I saw myself earning in any number of positions," Knutsen said. He says he receives intangible rewards from his daily work all the time. "In this job," he said, "those rewards greatly out-value anything money can buy."
Looks like Congressman Walz is helping to grow the bench of positive, progressive political talent in Southern Minnesota.
In non-campaign news, the New Ulm Journal says nearly 400 Southern Minnesotans have money coming to them in Old addresses create IRS check backlog:
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced Thursday that 399 Southern Minnesotans have not yet claimed their economic stimulus or regular refund checks.
First District Congressman Tim Walz urged taxpayers still waiting for IRS checks to update their addresses so the IRS can send them out.
"If you haven't gotten your check yet, the time to act is now - the IRS needs your updated address by Friday, Nov. 28," Walz stated in a press release.
Brown County residents who have not yet claimed stimulus or refund checks include Sleepy Eye residents Waldemar and Jean Harmening, James J. Hernandez and Garrett M. Meyer; plus Springfield resident Cory B. Prescott.
Addresses can be updated with the "Where's My Refund?" tool at IRS.gov.
It enables taxpayers to check the status of their refunds.
Taxpayers must submit their Social Security number, filing status and amount of refund shown their 2007 return.
The tool will provide the status of their refund and in some cases, provide instructions on how to resolve delivery problems.
Taxpayers without internet access should call 1-866-234-2942.
In Minnesota, the average economic stimulus check was $560.
Taxpayers who continue to have trouble receiving their checks or have other outstanding issues with the IRS should contact Walz's Rochester office at 507-206-0643.
Through September 2008, the government distributed 116 million economic stimulus payments. About 279,000 checks remain undeliverable across the country.
The Waseca County News reports that convicted Enron exec Jeffrey Skilling has left the building and has been transferred to a correctional facility in Colorado. FCI Waseca is converting to an all-women's prison by the end of the year.
And in honor of those middle school kids, here's a Walz ad about "Lessons":
Photo: Congressman Walz visits his old classroom; photo credit New York Times.