Recent content from J. Patrick Coolican
Former Republican governor expected to formally announce bid for third term in near future.
The National Rifle Association has no full-time Minnesota lobbyist. Why? It doesn't need one.
Former Gov. Tim Pawlenty is continuing to lay the groundwork for a bid for his old job, as evidenced by several developments last week. Pawlenty…
Ex-governor shows off his grasp of policy in possible prelude to decision to run.
He also called for more state spending on education, public works infrastructure and school safety, saying he wants to leave the state in better financial condition than he found in 2011.
Abdi Mohamed is a Republican Trump voter with a red “Make America Great Again” hat to prove it, and he is a practicing Muslim. Born…
Half a century ago, Lyndon Johnson had gone from “Uncle Corn Pone” — the derisive nickname given him by the Kennedys — to a record…
One-time Drug Enforcement Agency official Joseph T. Rannazzisi helped uncover drug industry influence in Washington.
U.S. Rep. Tim Walz bagged another endorsement last week, this one from carpenters, which continues a string of building-trades support that includes the International Union…
Minnesota Republican says research into gun violence should proceed. One of his DFL foes, Dean Phillips, said it's too little, too late.
He's slammed by DFLers for past support and by gun rights advocates for the shift.
A group of about 100 of Minnesota's richest, most politically engaged Republicans filed into a common room last week. The host was former Gov. Tim Pawlenty. He was offering an opportunity to get in on his own potential comeback bid in a gubernatorial race shaping up as the most significant and wide open in years.
From a delegate perspective his caucus support was wide as well as deep in some places.
He says Nation of Islam leader's presence at 2013 dinner was incidental.
The removal of David and Mark Wellstone and the split come heading into an election year that many in the party view as the most consequential in years.
The plan would raise about $20 million per year for prevention, emergency response, treatment, recovery and law enforcement.
These are the major contenders vying for their parties' nominations for Minnesota governor in 2018.
The former St. Paul mayor finished poorly in a recent DFL caucus straw poll.
As former two-term governor of Minnesota actively eyes comeback bid, allies see much to like and adversaries see plenty to attack.
There was a clarifying moment in the governor's race but also some caveats.
Party activists weighed in for the first time on the governor's race in a busy year for state politics.
A local GOP leader urged fellow Republicans to introduce a resolution at Tuesday precinct caucus meetings that would require attendees to "denounce sharia law, swear to support and defend the United States Constitution and prohibit the use of the Qur'an in the taking of this oath."
Former Republican congresswoman Michele Bachmann said on a radio program Saturday that she will not run for the Senate in 2018. Appearing on “Understanding…
Activists of both parties will gather to select party leaders, hash out platform planks and make choices in a nonbinding straw poll for governor.
Last week was significant in the governor’s race, as we got real clarity on the makeup of the field and the relative strengths of the…
Large imbalance in money raised last year has some in the GOP worried.
Jeff Johnson, a leading Republican candidate for governor, was pressed in a podcast interview this week to defend GOP lawmakers who have warned of Muslim-Americans "infiltrating" the upcoming precinct caucuses.
As of the most recent filing, the DFL's gubernatorial candidates are out-raising the GOP.
Dayton administration says another $43 million is needed to get the job done.
A local Republican Party official said he uncovered a plot to "mobilize Muslims to infiltrate our Republican caucuses on Feb. 6" -- drawing a swift rebuke from fellow Republicans.
The third term DFL attorney general had been considered a top contender for her party's nomination for governor, with a high profile job that made her well known to the state's voters.
A big week is coming up in the governor's race, as campaigns will report what money they raised and spent in 2017.
GOP and DFL candidates pitched plans for greater Minnesota at a forum.
The state legislator threw his support in the GOP gubernatorial race to Jeff Johnson, who was the party's nominee in 2014 and lost the election to Mark Dayton.
Dayton says he'll go despite 'less enthusiasm' for big game after Vikings loss.
Dayton looks to a military commander with significant leadership experience.
The Star Tribune's first election year poll is complete and, all things considered, it was a good series of results for Minnesota Republicans. President Donald…
But many Minnesota voters remain undecided as the crowded race gets started.
For months observers have waited for her to announce a run for governor.
Minnesota is one of a few states that base state taxes on an income figure plucked from the federal filing called "federal taxable income."
If lawmakers do nothing, a complex maze awaits both tax collectors and taxpayers.
A recent report in the Washington, D.C., publication Roll Call speculated about potential Republican candidates in the special Senate race to replace Al Franken and…
By trying to remain in the Senate, Fischbach, a Republican, is helping her party maintain its narrow majority status.
Former U.S. House member Michele Bachmann said on a religious TV program that she is considering running for the U.S. Senate seat Al Franken is vacating.
It was a wild year in Minnesota politics. We lost a U.S. senator in Al Franken, who resigned under the duress of sexual harassment allegations,…
Since Gov. Dayton announced the IT division found that automated systems were flooding phone lines, Minnesotans have heard nothing more.
Keith Franke wears a tiny earring in his left ear, collects comic books and spent a decade riding his bike everywhere because he lost his…
Anyone who thinks the former governor is a done deal for getting in the 2018 U.S. Senate race to take on Tina Smith is mistaken, a GOP source said.
Michelle Fischbach cannot serve in the Senate while also being lieutenant governor, the attorney general says. The Republican Fischbach says she's doing both.
Tina Smith hasn't had a chance to take over Al Franken's Senate seat yet, but she already has a GOP challenger. State Sen. Karin Housley announced she's running.
Lt. Gov. Tina Smith’s political connections and savvy quickly united Minnesota’s ideologically and geographically diverse DFL Party behind her as Al Franken’s replacement in the…
Julie Blaha, former math teacher and current secretary-treasurer of the AFL-CIO, announced recently that she would run for state auditor. That makes three DFL candidates…
Sen. Al Franken, facing accusations of sexual harassment, said last week that he would resign "in the coming weeks." Smith would be up for election next November.
U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison will not run in Minnesota’s special U.S. Senate election in 2018, he said in a statement. Ellison, a Democrat, earlier had…
Two high-level Democratic sources say the governor will appoint Smith as Minnesota's next U.S. senator, and that she will run for the seat in a 2018 special election.
The speedy investigative process, proposed by Republicans and DFLers, would allow confidentiality for accusers.
The senator's exit doubles the national stakes for the 2018 election in Minnesota.
The GOP-aligned Minnesota Jobs Coalition — House GOP chief of staff Ben Golnik’s old shop — sent out a nasty mailer on House DFL Minority…
Franken resignation, expected Thursday, would set off musical chairs in Minnesota politics, queue up epic election cycle in 2018.
It's Pearl Harbor day and now a day that will go down in infamy in Minnesota history, with Sen. Al Franken expected to resign this morning.
The Minnesota senator, who called the latest anonymous accusation "preposterous," is set to speak about his future. It comes after Democratic leaders united Wednesday to tell him it was time to go.
Mary Giuliani Stephens, the Republican mayor of Woodbury, announced last week at a well-attended kickoff that she’s running for governor. Despite a little understandable nervousness,…
A newcomer to state politics, Giuliani Stephens pitches experience as mayor of fast-growing suburb.
GOP and DFL highly motivated to claim Sen. Dan Schoen's spot.
Gov. Mark Dayton is indicating he will call two special elections before the Legislature convenes Feb. 20.
Legislators consider ways to put a stop to harassment.
Attorney Paul Rogosheske presented the DFL state senator's resignation letter, but he said Schoen never sexually harassed anyone intentionally and suggested that the claims were politically motivated.
Two Minnesota lawmakers announce they will resign on same day following harassment allegations that reverberated at State Capitol.
Republican state representative from southern Minnesota faced allegations from a fellow lawmaker and a lobbyist. Sarah Walker steps forward to say she's the lobbyist.
Minnesota’s 2018 legislative session, which convenes Feb. 20, promises to be bonkers. The Minnesota Supreme Court’s decision last week to uphold a line-item veto…
Dayton appointed Jessica Looman, deputy labor commissioner, to take over.
Gov. Mark Dayton said Wednesday he would create a task force to deal with abuses in senior homes revealed in a Star Tribune series this week. "The senior care failures are really appalling," he said.
A letter to the legislator from an accuser's lawyer suggests a lawsuit may be coming.
Those who regularly pass through the Capitol share stories of a proverbial small world that can enable untoward behavior.
"I believe he should resign" and apologize, says the former GOP House speaker.
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