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Hot Dish Politics

Tracking Minnesota’s political scene and keeping you up-to-date on those elected to serve you

Twin Cities TV station pulls ad against Mills

WASHINGTON -- The Twin Cities CW station WUCW decided to pull an ad against Stewart Mills off the air after national Republicans complained it was inaccurate.

The ad shows Stewart Mills saying he is "personally offended" about allegations that the wealthy don't pay taxes, but the National Republican Congressional Committee say the words were actually thrown together from three separate sentences in a longer speech.

In the actual summer 2013 speech to the Second Amendment and Liberty Rally posted on YouTube, Mills said, "We donate to charity, we help with events, we do a lot of things for this community and to be singled out as a deadbeat is personally offensive. And that's what they call them. They say oh, they're not paying their fair share. There's all these loopholes."

Later in the speech, Mills said, "The problem with that isn't necessarily paying your fair-share, it's the political pandering because what happens is that underneath the Obama administration, our taxes went from 35 to 39.6 percent."

Mills is challenging incumbent Democrat Rep. Rick Nolan for his Eighth Congressional District seat. The race is expected to be among the tightest in the country. Some political observers have called Nolan "the most vulnerable Democrat in the House" this cycle.

In a letter to the Mills campaign, WUCW's director of sales said the station's legal department advised the ad be pulled off the air.

The ad was part of a massive $350,000 ad buy by the liberal House Majority PAC in the Twin Cities and Duluth television markets. The ad is still running on other stations.

The House Majority PAC said Wednesday the station was partisan and the protest was "Stewart Mills still trying to keep Minnesota voters from hearing the out-of-touch views he expressed in his own words."

Mdewakanton Sioux descendants ask U.S. Supreme Court for ruling on land dispute

A group of descendants of the Loyal Mdewakanton on Wednesday formally asked the U.S. Supreme Court to settle a 153-year-old fight over 12 square miles of land in Redwood County.

Television and movie actor Sheldon Peters Wolfchild is among the descendants of the Loyal Mdewakanton, a group of American Indians that was promised but never given the land as a reward for siding with white settlers in the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862.

If successful, the lawsuit would result in the eviction of more than 70 private landowners, some municipal entities and the Lower Sioux Indian Community in southwestern Minnesota.

A decision could also set broader precedent by allowing American Indians to pursue federal common law claims of trespass and ejectment, said Erick Kaardal, the Minneapolis attorney who filed the suit.

The Eighth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals  issued a ruling in the case this summer saying that the concerned lands can’t be considered part of federal common law. The court said the claims would be valid if the original 1863 treaty provided a “private remedy” for the tribe to acquire the land. No such recourse is available in the treaty, the court said.

“In our view, it’s a seminal Supreme Court case,” Kaardal said in an interview. “Do American Indians, when they’re identified in statute and given the right to permanent occupancy to set up on land, can they use federal court to take trespassers off?”

Ricardo Lopez • 651-925-5042