Recent content from Jeff Hargarten
How popular is your name in Minnesota?
Track the popularity of any first name in Minnesota over the past century.
How the COVID-19 pandemic has changed Minnesotans' lives
The pandemic caused abrupt and unusual shifts at home, at work, shopping, traveling and more. Life isn't completely back to pre-pandemic normal — and maybe it never will be.
Does Minnesota have more forests than its neighbors?
The state's immense forests once made it a lumber milling giant.
Violent crime declined in Mpls. last year, but rates still well above norm
Analysts say it's too early to say why it fell, though some credit a return to normalcy in the Twin Cities and around the nation.
Internet speed disparities in Minneapolis depend on address
Formerly redlined neighborhoods have the lowest percentages of broadband internet.
Map: How Minnesota voted for governor, precinct by precinct
DFL Gov. Tim Walz won re-election in part by winning strong support in areas of the Twin Cities and its suburbs — further cementing Minnesota's urban-rural political divide.
As Twin Cities opioid overdoses surge, officials lean into drug prevention, education
Minneapolis calls the surge a public health and safety concern, and St. Paul is grappling with a sevenfold increase in fentanyl overdoses.
Embattled north Mpls. corner long been epicenter for violence
A half-mile radius surrounding a North Side intersection, home to the embattled Merwin Liquors and a Winner Gas station known as the "murder station," is where nearly one out of every 10 killings citywide has taken place since 2010, according to a Star Tribune analysis.
Kia, Hyundai face lawsuits amid surge in Twin Cities auto thefts
Some residents have responded with a class-action lawsuit, joining more than a dozen similar lawsuits against Kia and Hyundai.
These 50 animals and plants have disappeared from Minnesota
Scientists know the actual number of extirpated species is much larger, but we don't have a full picture of what species have lived here.
In Minneapolis, downtown is back. So is the violent crime
Still below 2019 levels, violent offenses are creeping up in the city's downtown west neighborhood as business and night life returns to a semblance of normalcy.
After July 4th shooting, Minneapolis braces for more gun violence
Police say low staffing levels hinder their response to calls.
Racial covenants found embedded in Ramsey County deeds
The research is far from complete, but the Mapping Prejudice group plans to launch a dialogue about the consequences of racial covenants in Ramsey County as it has in Hennepin County.
Suburbs' increase in violent crime is mostly in a few metro cities
A Star Tribune analysis of data from 50 Twin Cities suburbs shows violent and property crimes jumped notably in some communities last year. But most metro-area suburbs saw little or no increase.
How popular is your first name (or any other) in Minnesota?
Track the popularity of any first name in Minnesota over the past century.
Catalytic converter thefts soaring in Twin Cities suburbs
The Twin Cities metro area is the riskiest place in the country for such thefts, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau.
Six takeaways from Minnesota's new redistricting maps
Last week's release of new congressional and legislative maps has shifted Minnesota's electoral landscape.
Maps show how redistricting reshapes Minnesota's political borders
Every legislative seat is up for re-election in a redistricting year, meaning control of state government is at stake in the fall election.
Here is where carjackings happened in St. Paul in 2021
There were roughly 100 carjacking incidents in the capital city last year.
Store owners wary, weary as robberies climb in Minneapolis
Some stores have been hit several times, making workers quit and scaring away customers.
A breakdown of 2021 carjackings in Minneapolis by neighborhood
Carjackings swept across Minneapolis last year, mostly concentrated in areas around Midtown and Uptown.
Mpls. closes in on homicide milestone at end of violent year
As 2021 comes to a close, shootings are up by every metric, and the city nears the homicide record set in 1995.
Arrests for most violent and property crimes drop in Mpls.
Homicide arrests are up significantly, by contrast, in a sign Minneapolis police are focusing their resources.
For 19% of Mpls. voters, Frey was the only mayoral choice ranked
New data released after votes were certified offers a deeper look at how voters ranked the mayoral candidates - and why a campaign urging people not to rank the incumbent mayor ultimately lost.
MPD use-of-force data remain murky a year after changes
Minneapolis overhauled the thresholds for use of force by officers after the murder of George Floyd. But data available on the city's use-of-force dashboard remains incomplete, making it difficult to access the actual effect of the policy changes.
Minneapolis' historic election pushed turnout to new high
Voter turnout reached new heights, continuing a trend that's reversed years of declining engagement.
Opposition to policing amendment spanned north and south Minneapolis
Through impassioned debates in the nearly 18 months since George Floyd's killing by police, one question was frequently asked: Who would decide the future of policing in Minneapolis? Black residents disproportionately impacted by crime and police use of force, or white voters who often dominate local election turnout?
Precinct-by-precinct look at how Minneapolis voted down police charter question
While other younger, more diverse areas showed stronger support for the failed amendment, precincts on the North Side had narrower results.
Minneapolis on pace for most violent year in a generation
This year is on track to surpass 2020's record-high 9,600 gunfire reports. And the past 20 months now account for almost a quarter of the 70,000 gunshot incidents reported in Minneapolis since 2008.
5 takeaways from the 2020 census data for Minnesota
Interesting things we're seeing in the 2020 census data released Thursday.
What will Twin Cities area look like in 2050? Larger, older and more diverse
Met Council's latest population forecast predicts slowdown in growth, but surging diversity.
Decade-high crime surge jars neighborhoods surrounding U
From Sept. 1 to May 31, there were about 2,100 criminal incidents reported across university-area neighborhoods, up 40% from the nearly 1,500 tallied in the prior academic year.
North Minneapolis renters wage a fight with private equity landlords
An investment firm is area's largest landlord of single-family rentals
Fatal stop brings fresh scrutiny to Brooklyn Center police
Most officers are white, while most residents are people of color. According to the mayor, not one officer lives within city limits.
After a pandemic year, Minnesota's social distancing tapers off
Data from Google and other sources show a gradual shift toward normal habits.
With Peterson's defeat, a longtime DFL stronghold shifts into GOP hands
After years of declining victory margins, one of the few remaining "Blue Dog Democrats" couldn't stave off political changes in his district this time.
Absentee balloting helped drive Minnesota's highest voter turnout in 6 decades
High rates of early voting help propel Minnesota to one of its strongest voting years ever.
Biden recaptures lost ground as many Minnesota counties move left
Despite several visits from President Donald Trump hoping to win Minnesota, the electorate favored former vice president Joe Biden, delivering him the win in a handful of counties that evaded Hillary Clinton in 2016. Where Trump prevailed, his win margin was tighter in regional population centers, while it grew in some of the most rural parts of the North Star State.
An election like no other: Tracking Minnesota's early voting
With nearly 2 million absentee votes already accepted, Minnesotans are trending well ahead of previous election early voting.
Minnesotans gave record amounts to campaigns during a chaotic year
More of Minnesota's donors gave more money to political campaigns via platforms like ActBlue and WinRed than ever before.
For Black Minnesota voters, equality is on the ballot
A Star Tribune analysis of voting patterns in Minnesota precincts with a majority or plurality of Black voters shows a drop in registered voter turnout from 75% in 2012 to 70% in 2016.
With days to go, more than 1.1M Minnesotans have voted so far
The volume of early ballots accepted this year is already almost double the number counted for the entire 2016 election. With 11 days to go until Nov. 3, the mountain of mail ballots is expected to rise.
Early voting, once regional in Minnesota, has swept across the state
Absentee balloting has shattered records and crossed regions during this pandemic election year.
Minnesota's primary had few late or rejected mail ballots
Higher rates of mail-in ballots were returned by Minnesota voters during the state primary, while relatively fewer were rejected.
Minnesotans across the state overwhelmingly are voting absentee
A heated presidential election and COVID-19 are driving people to vote from home.
How Minneapolis policing changed during a historic summer of turmoil
Minneapolis police activity fell dramatically compared to last year as the department faced multiple challenges.
6 of 10 Minnesota primary voters cast ballots absentee or by mail, tripling turnout
Check out your county's numbers on our map. The general election on Nov. 3 will likely test Minnesota's capacity to handle an even greater surge of voters.
Summer might be canceled, but Minnesotans are distancing less
Minnesotans are out and about this summer after COVID-19 lockdowns have eased, but daily life remains altered in some ways.
Following historic unrest, police data show a quieter Minneapolis
Police reports spiked, then dipped surrounding the unrest triggered by George Floyd's death.
Stark racial disparities remain as Mpls. police use-of-force rate rises
After a decade of falling, the share of Minneapolis police incidents involving some form of force has increased in the past three years.
How Minnesotans are lightening up on social distancing
Typical Minnesota life ground to a halt when Gov. Tim Walz announced a shelter-in-place order in late March. But as summer approaches, fewer are staying home as often.
COVID-19 isolation hits harder for 300,000 Minnesotans who don't have internet
Minnesota's gaps in access to basic technology may leave vulnerable residents even further behind during the COVID-19 pandemic.
How Minnesota voted in the 2020 Democratic primary, precinct by precinct
Explore a detailed map of each precinct's result showing where Joe Biden bested his rivals across Minnesota.
Three metrics that suggest who Minnesotans might vote for
Amy Klobuchar had maintained a polling lead in Minnesota's primary before she withdrew from the race, but Bernie Sanders' momentum had been narrowing the gap.
Klobuchar tracker: Super Tuesday scramble in southern states
Klobuchar's campaign may face a challenge reaching November's Democratic debate stage.
Sanders overtakes Klobuchar in small-dollar Minnesota donations ahead of Super Tuesday
Sanders out-raised Klobuchar among Minnesotans contributing to ActBlue in January.
How Amy Klobuchar's surge in New Hampshire might've helped Bernie, too
Some have wondered whether Klobuchar peeled votes away from Buttigieg and benefited Sanders, whose win was slimmer than in 2016.
A precinct-by-precinct look at Klobuchar's Iowa caucus performance
After months of campaigning and visiting all 99 Iowa counties, Klobuchar was mostly washed out except for some suburban and sparsely-populated areas.
How Minneapolis might reshape its school district
Minneapolis has released five proposals to shift schools and students around the district.
Minnesota sends black, Native American prisoners to solitary at higher rates than whites
The first-of-its-kind report also reflects some people are staying in isolation for long periods of time.
Minnesotans Googled these Democratic candidates the most in 2019
Google Trends data shows which Democratic candidates Minnesotans have been most curious about over the past year.
Minnesota's veteran suicides continue taking a steady toll
Recent state death records show a downturn in Minnesota veteran suicide rate – though 100 or more former service members still die by suicide annually throughout the state.
UFOs are back in the news — and Minnesotans are seeing more of them
About half of Minnesota's roughly UFO 1,700 sightings since the 1940s have taken place in this decade.
Take a photo tour of Mpls. in 1907 with astonishing, interactive panorama
A panoramic photo of the city taken on a large-format camera in 1907 offers an incredible time capsule. "It reveals things that essentially nobody ever saw before. It's so immersive."
How Minnesota donors have boosted Klobuchar's campaign
Sen. Amy Klobuchar joins a narrowed field of presidential candidates on Thursday night's primary debate stage, and has reached this point partially due to strong support from her Minnesota constituents.
As parties court small-dollar donors, undecided Democrats back multiple candidates
Macey Meyer never considered herself the type to donate to a presidential campaign. Then she watched the first Democratic presidential primary debates. The 26-year-old restaurant…
Which Minnesota schools are scoring better than expected?
A Star Tribune analysis of standardized math and reading test scores can determine whether schools are doing better than their demographics would suggest. Look up whether your school made the cut.
Minnesota faces a labor growth slowdown. This helps explain why.
Minnesota's labor force growth is projected to slow the next decade, adding to those outside the workforce.
Mpls. police rethink pursuit policy after string of chases
The discussion comes after a string of high-speed police pursuits that ended in crashes involving injuries and even death.
Access to guns a concern as Mpls. police seize more than 700 in 2018
North Side, Northeast rose so far this year; overall, numbers fell a third in past decade.
As rents rise in the Twin Cities, suburbs embrace affordable housing efforts
With rents rising across the metro, cities find stable options to help, and keep, tenants.
The state of marijuana in Minnesota, according to data
As lawmakers reconsider the drug's legal status, here's a look at the current laws, public opinion and criminal justice data related to cannabis in Minnesota.
Stassen to Bachmann: A look back at Minnesota's past presidential candidates
A handful of home-grown politicians have run for the highest office in the land, but none have ever progressed to the Oval Office.