Recent content from J. Patrick Coolican
The role of the big corporate sector in DFL politics — and vice versa — is an interesting phenomenon of both political and business life here.
Ellison says the case is without merit
Former medical director said the agency was making too many decisions without doctor input.
Monday's announcement ends a period of turmoil in the top ranks of the agency, which serves more than 1 million Minnesotans with the help of roughly 7,300 workers.
Direct funding of nonprofits calls DEED's opportunity-gap results into question.
The trend line doesn't look good for the sometimes cantankerous but often amusing chairman of the House Agriculture Committee.
More than $700,000 poured in from unions and corporate donors.
It's not clear what the solution is.
Interim manager Bob Jacobson has a law enforcement background.
Kenza Hadj-Moussa, a spokeswoman for the progressive group TakeAction Minnesota, told me last week that no decisions have been made about recruiting challengers to take…
Sarah Walker, who stepped down last week, vehemently denies claims that she lobbied for husband's nonprofit while serving as deputy corrections commissioner.
Republican lawmakers put pressure on Walz administration for answers about what happened at the massive social services agency.
Rep. Steve Drazkowski of Mazeppa launched a website focused on Rep. Ilhan Omar and also submitted a formal request for an investigation to the U.S. House Ethics Committee.
Seven current and former Democratic senators told the New Yorker that they regret calling for Franken's resignation and not giving him a chance for "due process."
The headline of our daily e-mail politics newsletter asked a rhetorical question last week. Enjoying your new job, Chris Schmitter? we asked. Schmitter is the…
Acting commissioner is brought on to calm an agency facing leadership tumult.
A spokeswoman said the department has received complaints about Sarah Walker, but "the investigation has not been completed."
Claire Wilson and Charles Johnson rescinded their resignations.
State's Human Services head quits after 2 top deputies resigned.
Some takeaways from a recent Washington Post profile of U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar — and the aftermath: 1. As the old joke goes,…
The abrupt departures of two veteran administrators set up an early test of the leadership of Commissioner Tony Lourey.
Republicans scoffed at the spending, which is sure to set off a fresh round of debate about the use of state money for favored industries, especially in film and television.
Although she has legally corrected the discrepancy, she has declined to say anything about how or why it happened.
He has scored policy wins that may seem only incremental but have significant long-term ramifications.
The program intended to foster economic growth on the Iron Range has given more money per capita in the past five years for projects in influential state Senate Minority Leader Tom Bakk's district than any other — by about one-third, according to a review of public records.
Governor's office refuses to make schedule public.
Minnesota House Speaker Melissa Hortman has been underestimated for the better part of two years. Even as Democrats grew excited about their overall prospects in…
Questions about Omar's complicated marriage and immigration history resurfaced Thursday when a state campaign finance board revealed that she and Ahmed Hirsi filed joint tax returns in 2014 and 2015 — a period when she was legally married to another man.
Zimmern's contract, which ends this month, required two posts per month to reach his more than 1 million Twitter and other social media followers.
Ask anyone you know with a child in day care what it costs. And then ask them what their mortgage is. You'll find day care is often more expensive.
In rare agreement, both Republicans, Democrats praised the new measure.
People around the State Capitol, including Republicans who tried to thwart Gov. Tim Walz's election last year, credit him with an agile bit of statecraft, even if it took a special session to wrap up the budget. He fought to a draw and transformed the deal — and his first legislative session — into a victory.
The Legislature adjourned early Saturday after a 21-hour special session in which they labored through a series of bills to fund Minnesota schools, parks, prisons, public health care and other services for the next two years.
Last week we made the case from a DFL operative that the annual tragicomedy of the legislative session has little bearing on the next…
With time running out, legislative leaders tentatively planned a special session Thursday to hammer out final budget agreements through a series of conference committees or "working groups."
The contrasting scenes with Minnesota senators approving a stopgap bill and Gov. Tim Walz addressing teachers reflected the strains after a week of closed-door budget talks.
"The politics of who wins legislative elections have never been more divorced from what actually happens in St. Paul," one DFL operative said.
Closed-door negotiations continue, with less public finger-pointing.
Deadline looms on Monday.
Will Minnesota avert a state government shutdown? It's complicated. Here's a primer on the budget battle.
Negotiations on a state budget are stalled, so what would a stalemate mean for both sides going forward?
New revenue figures immediately come into play during the budget negotiations.
Minnesota Senate GOP leader Paul Gazelka, father of child with a dual gender identity, seeks to heal political and personal wounds. "I cry over this issue," he said, choking up during an interview
As the budget marathon nears its end, all parties are on guard for the sort of accounting gimmickry that has often marked past spending battles at the Capitol.
It's not surprising that Gov. Tim Walz would put one of his closest advisers inside the Department of Corrections.
Two wildly divergent education spending proposals emerged from the DFL-led House and the Republican-controlled Senate — with scarcely two weeks left in the legislative session.
Pest control companies oppose the bill, saying it would create a "crazy-quilt" of regulation.
Governor says he wants more information about claims that BCA fell short.
Republicans say the tax drives up costs; Democrats say the poor would pay.
It passed the House on a mostly party-line 74 to 58 vote. Senate Republicans have long vowed to fight the proposal, which would push the gas tax from 28.5 cents to 48.5 cents per gallon — a 70% increase.
The three modes of politics these days seem to be sanctimony, outrage and sanctimonious outrage — much of it delivered with all the dramatic…
Gov. Tim Walz said last week he will tighten hiring rules after reports that the IRRRB — long accused of DFL cronyism — passed over a qualified woman and deviated from normal procedures by publicly posting the position for just 24 hours, instead of the usual 21 days.
It's a marathon to get bills off the floors — and into talks.
At the same time, low-income Minnesotans also would benefit most from the governor's spending proposals, which are funded by the tax increases.
It passed a budget measure that looks little like the Senate proposal.
The position, while not new, has been elevated to the level of assistant commissioner.
The campaign-style tour, during the Minnesota Legislature's weeklong recess, was designed to use Walz's retail politicking chops and extroverted persona.
Coming out of the Easter/Passover break, with a mere five weeks to the finish, Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka has a difficult path forward.
The standard hiring process was circumvented in awarding a civil service job that pays a six-figure salary to a prominent Iron Range Democrat, according to a newspaper report.
Cybersecurity, aging software and hardware will be major challenges.
All are vulnerable Republicans in districts where a Democrat holds at least one of the House seats.
Lawmakers, staffers and lobbyists gather at Mancini's and go retro.
The focus of the visit reportedly is to celebrate President Trump's tax cut act on the day -- April 15 -- that income tax filings are due.
House plan looks to corporations for more school aid but sets up battle with GOP in Senate.
The first-term Democrat cites inflation and road repairs. Republican leaders say the increase is not needed in a time of surplus.
The DFL-controlled House released a massive $7.28 billion, two-year transportation bill while the Republican-controlled Senate transportation committee rejected the gasoline tax hike as well as other tax increases.
Dueling proposals vie to reshape the market in the state, especially with the rising cost of prescription drugs.
The Legislature is an unusual work environment because no one is the boss of the lawmakers, other than the voters.
State Sen. Paul Gazelka, R-Nisswa, the GOP majority leader, called the cost projection "a real problem." He does not plan to hold hearings or a floor vote on the proposal this session.
As the party that wants an activist government, Democrats have the most to gain from building up public trust that comes from surpluses.
New revenue data fuels the tax debate at Capitol.
The governor welcomed hundreds of military veterans converging on the State Capitol to press for housing, disability services and upkeep of cemeteries.
MnDOT has identified 500 road and bridge projects for development around the state — if lawmakers approve new revenue.
Energy firms, business groups and unions were leaders in spending.
Republicans are using their three-seat majority in the state Senate to block the ambitious agenda of newly elected DFL Gov. Tim Walz.