Top: Republican House Speaker Kurt Daudt, Majority Leader Joyce Peppin and Rep. Jim Knoblach arrive at the governor's residence. Below: Sen. Dick Cohen and DFL Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk.
The self-described “Cone of Silence” among Gov. Mark Dayton and top state lawmakers continued Thursday in Day Four of negotiating the state’s $40 billion budget.
Beginning at 8 a.m. Thursday, Gov. Mark Dayton said little about negotiations after addressing the Minnesota Prayer Breakfast gathering.
“Cone of silence,” Dayton said as he passed reporters, a reference to the classic television show “Get Smart.”Asked how negotiations were progressing, Dayton replied. “Getting there…somewhere.”
Three hours later, Republican House Speaker Kurt Daudt, Majority Leader Joyce Peppin and Rep. Jim Knoblach entered the governor’s mansion with the same sentiment.
“Good morning,” Daudt greeted reporters. Asked about negotiations, Daudt simply responded “Good morning.”
DFL Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk also said little while entering, but when they broke for lunch just a half hour after meeting, he indicated that a deal may be nearing.
“Seems like it,” he told the Associated Press. “Not the whole thing but some pieces probably.”