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Vikings beef up lobbying crew at State Capitol

  • Associated Press
  • February 24, 2010 - 10:59 AM

ST. PAUL, Minn. - The Minnesota Vikings have some new muscle at the state Capitol.

Seven lobbyists, including some with deep connections, have registered this month to work on the team's behalf. In all, the football franchise now has 10 registered lobbyists.

The Vikings want the public's help to pay for a new football stadium, although there is no formal plan in play. Lawmakers say their attention is on fixing the state budget.

The Vikings are under lease at the Metrodome through the 2011 season.

Team official Lester Bagley says the Vikings haven't had as big a Capitol presence since the 2006 session.

Among the new lobbyists are John Knapp of Winthrop and Weinstine and former Democratic state Sen. Dave Johnson of Best and Flanagan. Knapp says the team needed "some more arms and legs" to make the rounds in case the stadium debate moves ahead.

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