After the budget deal was approved, the Fergus Falls Daily Journal didn't have much luck getting Senator Gretchen Hoffman to say something for the July 20 story, Dayton signs budget, local reps react:
Sen. Gretchen Hoffman did not respond to interview requests.
While she didn't return calls from the largest daily published in her district, Senator Hoffman did find time to be interviewed by Rob, who was filling in for Scott Hennen's talk radio show on KNOX AM in Grand Forks.
There are some true gems in this show, but Bluestem is especially impressed with Hoffman's understanding of the history of state regulation of the alcohol and betting industries in the state of Minnesota. Since she asked (rhetorically, BSP suspects) when government started regulating private industry--telling them what they could and could not do--Bluestem put together a little video that answers a few of her questions.
What it [the shutdown] showed me was how intertwined our government is in our private sector and I took notes. . . .
. . .The biggest news article was when Miller and Coors couldn't stock our shelves here in Minnesota. You know what they say, don't take a beer away from a Minnesotan in 95 degree heat. But on a serious note, they couldn't go in and stock their shelves. When did that become a function of government to say what a private business can and can't do? . . .
. . .Canterbury Downs had to close. A thousand people were laid off during the shutdown in the private sector. Government has intertwined itself in Minnesota so much. . . .
Alcohol has been regulated in Minnesota since 1933, following a period of when the private industry was illegal under federal law, the Prohibition era that began in 1919 after years of agitation. Minnesota Congressman Volstead (R-Granite Falls) wrote the legislation that got the ball rolling on amending the U.S. Constitution.
Following the repeal of Prohibition, states moved in to regulate production and sales in the alcohol industry; a list of state-by-state laws is provided here. However, Bluestem is not surprised that Hoffman didn't know about this rich history before she heard about it on the news
Likewise, the state of Minnesota regulates gambling; Bluestem is quite surprised that Hoffman didn't know that the state regulates Canterbury Park, and this poor country blog hopes that Dick Day and our other friends at RacinoNow pay her a visit and educate her about the horse racing industry.
Actually, it's kind of surprising that she didn't know much about this particular intertwining since Minnesotans for Racino contributed $500 to her campaign committee last year. Minnesotans for Racino is the political action committee for RacinoNow, so if Hoffman doesn't get how how long the government and the private sector have been intertwined in this one, Bluestem can only hope that former Senate Minority Leader Day takes a road trip to Fergus to help educate her.
On the other hand, Mike Brodkorb might have something to say about that, though I suspect Hoffman won't quite get the full Pat Anderson treatment at Mike's hands.
Here's the Youtube:
Next up in "Tales of Hoffman": billions and billions saved.
Photo: Gretchen Hoffman, state senator and yarn teller.