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Archive for May, 2012

This video has been seen almost 7,000 times:

The video attempts to put a sympathetic spin on the unions’ fight against the taxpayers. That attempt is failing, which is why Scott Walker is leading in the polls.

My Examiner article highlights what this recall fight is about:

If the Wisconsin recall election was distilled to its purest form, it would boil down to a fight for property tax cuts vs. collective bargaining rights. That’s the biggest reason why Gov. Walker will handily defeat Tom Barrett in less than 2 weeks.

As a direct result of the Wisconsin legislature passing, then Gov. Walker signing, the budget repair bill, unions can’t rip off school districts, counties and municipalities by insisting that government purchase their health insurance through WEAC Trust.

Prior to passing the Budget Repair Bill, unions could force school boards and municipalities to pay exhorbitant prices to purchase health insurance policies through WEAC Trust. WEAC Trust is owned by the Wisconsin Education Association, aka the Wisconsin teachers union.

Why should school districts and municipalities pay exhorbitant prices for a product they purchase the same product at a cheaper price at a competitor? This post explains what’s at stake for the taxpayers:

Bernie Nikolay should be happy. His school district; he’s the superintendent in Milton, had a good November.

The girls swim team won the state title, a first for Milton girls athletics. And an arbitrator said the district could switch health coverage away from the insurer owned by the teachers union. That’ll save the district as much as a million bucks a year.

For a district with a $33 million budget, that’s cheery. For the rest of the state, it means a tide may have turned.

Think about that tiny school district’s savings multiplied by each of the school districts and municipalities in the state. The savings to taxpayers is potentially in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Those savings will dramatically effect property taxes.

If taxpayers understand that this is a choice between unions maintaining their collective bargaining rights or saving hundreds of dollars per year on property taxes, Tom Barrett will get trounced.

In fact, if I were a GOP consultant for this fall’s legislative races, I’d advise my clients to run on the fact that his/her opponent voted to protect the unions at the expense of the taxpayers. It’s the message that wouldn’t die until the first official returns started getting reported.

I’d love hearing the Democrats explain why they put a higher priority on protecting unions than they put on protecting taxpayers. I’d love hearing the unions explain why they charged exhorbitant prices for their health insurance policies compared with their competitors’ health insurance policies.

The unions fighting this fight accuse Gov. Walker of fighting “a war against working families.” By the unions’ standard, they’re fighting “a war against” taxpayers by attempting to rip off school districts and municipalities.

In the final analysis, AFSCME, WEA and the other public employee unions are solely interested in themselves. They don’t care about the taxpayers. They’ve shown how little they respect their neighbors.

This recall is the perfect opportunity for their neighbors to express their disgust with the unions’ thug tactics and ripoffs.

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The DFL is attempting to keep their disdain for miners a secret. Though they’re working hard to keep that secret, this article blows that myth to smithereens:

Conservation Minnesota, Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness and the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy are targeting the proposed PolyMet mine near Hoyt Lakes and the proposed Twin Metals mine near Ely.

The campaign includes the web site MiningTruth.org, a 40-page report examining mining in detail, a Facebook community, and four billboards along Interstate 35 between the Twin Cities and Duluth to reach summer travelers.

Environmental groups call it sulfide mining because the copper, nickel, gold and other metals are locked up in minerals that contain sulfur and can produce sulfuric acid and other contaminants when exposed to the elements. They fear toxic runoff would threaten Lake Superior and the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. And they say the environmental record of such mining elsewhere is poor.

“These are not our grandfather’s iron ore mines,” said Molly Pederson, government affairs director for Conservation Minnesota. “This is a completely different kind of mining.”

Though Conservation Minnesota, Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness and the MCEA aren’t officially part of TakeAction Minnesota, they’re certainly part of the DFL infrastructure. Look who sits on Conservation Minnesota’s Board of Directors:

That’s right. Alida Messinger, the Patron Saint of Environmental Extremism in the DFL, aka the DFL’s deep pockets and the woman that tells DFL politicians what to do.

Let’s tie a few things together because it’s important. Ms. Messinger’s ex-hubby is Gov. Dayton. Gov. Dayton has twice stopped mineral rights lease auctions, prompting Prof. Kent Kaiser to write a stinging op-ed on the subject:

This month, Minnesota’s State Executive Council, which includes the governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general and state auditor, voted to delay 77 leases to explore for copper and nickel on private lands in northern Minnesota.

This short-sighted action was initiated by Gov. Mark Dayton and Secretary of State Mark Ritchie. It was unfortunate for the job situation in the Northland, and I know many Minnesotans are terribly disappointed.

There’s more to this story than Gov. Dayton’s decision. This, for instance:

Indeed, Dayton’s actions this month were more consistent with his actions two decades ago. At that time, when he was on the State Executive Council as state auditor, he called for the postponement of mining lease votes so he could consult first with the Sierra Club.

Gov. Dayton and Alida Messinger are birds of the same extremist feathers. He does the official business. She does the heavy lifting from behind the scenes. It’s apparent that they’re both working to prevent the next big wave of Iron Range employment.

The important question that Gov. Dayton and Ms. Messinger need to answer is why they’re preventing miners from providing for their families.

Stylistically, MiningTruth.org is similar to Alida’s other propaganda enterprises. MiningTruth.org employs the same heavyhanded tactics that ABM uses:

PolyMet is the furthest along in the environmental review and permitting process. In 2010, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency gave the company’s draft Environmental Impact Statement a failing grade, calling the mine’s environmental impacts “unacceptable” and the review itself “inadequate.”

PolyMet is now back at the drawing board trying to develop a new plan that won’t present such serious pollution risks. Unfortunately, the company has not changed its plan to destroy more than 1,000 acres of pristine wetlands; if approved, the project would represent the largest such destruction ever permitted in Minnesota.

The EPA’s ruling simply means that PolyMet needs to come up with a better plan for reducing its impact on the environment. It doesn’t mean that it’s impossible to significantly reduce the mine’s environmental impact.

That’s what makes Conservation Minnesota’s statement over-the-top:

Unfortunately, the company has not changed its plan to destroy more than 1,000 acres of pristine wetlands…

Alida Messinger and Conservation Minnesota don’t have proof that PolyMet will “destroy more than 1,000 acres of pristine wetlands.” In fact, that scaremongering tactic was recently put in its place by Frank Ongaro:

Frank Ongaro, executive director of the industry group MiningMinnesota, disputed the term sulfide mining, saying companies plan to mine nonferrous metals, not sulfides. He said Minnesota has some of the world’s largest deposits of these metals, and that demand is growing.

“The state of Minnesota has strong, solid comprehensive regulations in place, and any individual company that proposes a mineral development project will have to demonstrate that they can meet or exceed Minnesota’s strong standards or they won’t get a permit,” he said.

If PolyMet doesn’t live up to Minnesota’s mining regulations, they don’t get to start the mining operation. If PolyMet puts a plan in place that complies with Minnesota’s stringent environmental laws, that 1,000 acres of “pristine wilderness” will be preserved. Either way, Conservation Minnesota’s nightmare scenario can’t happen.

Expect Conservation Minnesota’s attacks to intensify as we near the approval of the federal permits in October. Gov. Dayton and Alida Messinger oppose serious mining expansion with every fiber of their being.

That’s why they’re quickly getting exposed for being hostile to the mining community.

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If you believe Denise Cardinal’s performance on Almanac, which I don’t, you’d believe that the DFL is totally content, that there’s no divisions within the DFL and that they’re rolling in cash. As Meatloaf said a generation ago, 2 out of 3 ain’t bad.

Cardinal is right in that there aren’t any divisions within the DFL. She’s right, too, that there’s lots of money in the DFL’s coffers. Both things come together in a simple step. If the DFL does exactly what Alida Messinger tells them to do, she’ll promptly write a check with lots of zeroes at the end of it.

See how simple it is with the DFL. Obedience to the first former Mrs. Mark Dayton ends all divisions and all money problems for the DFL. That’s efficiency, DFL style. (When’s the last time anyone stood up to Alida’s extremist environmental dictates?)

The thing that’s sad is that the DFL is forced into agreeing with her anti-mining ideology. The DFL is forced into agreeing that fairness and class warfare are infinitely more important than prosperity. Thanks to Alida, the DFL is forced into thinking that the definition of marriage that’s been used by civilized societies for 5,000 years is divisive.

A Cardinal appearance on Almanac wouldn’t be complete without her spewing her dishonest propaganda. This time didn’t fail. First she said that the GOP shut down state government. Then she said that the only things that the GOP legislature could point to were a pair of “divisive constitutional amendments.”

First, there’s proof aplenty that the DFL and their allies approved the strategy of shutting down state government:

Early in the process when it was becoming clearer that the shutdown was going to happen there was discussion between the governors office and the coalition group (a group made up of a wide variety of unions including AFSCME, MAPE, Teamsters, and others who discussed on how broad the shutdown should be. All parties agreed that for the shutdown to be most effective, that the public had to feel the pain and realize what state workers do for this State. The best way for this to happen would be a real shutdown involving many state workers, in lieu of a partial shutdown. There was no one party who came to this conclusion. The shutdown was necessary to place focus on the top 2% of Minnesotans to pay their fair share in taxes. This was explained at a statewide meeting of all local presidents.

Governor Dayton supported this shutdown because he could not agree to the massive cuts to state workers and state programs, and although we did not have success with taxing the top 2% he did succeed in saving 5 thousand state jobs which were going to be lost under the Republican backed plan, and many provisions which would have ended our collective bargaining rights as we know them were removed from bills.

There was much disappointment when the Governor made his decision to compromise and end the shutdown. Elliot Seide was asked to speak to our group so we could better understand the Governors decision. Elliot stated that the Governor did not take this decision lightly and was burdened by the effects the shutdown was having on state workers and the entire state on Minnesota. Elliot stated that Governor Dayton did not believe that continuing the shutdown would result in Republicans agreeing to raise taxes on the wealthiest Minnesotans. Elliot and other did attempt to convince the Governor, without success to continue the shutdown as he felt we were gaining momentum and gaining Public support.

AFSCME council 5, intends to stick with Governor Dayton’s tax the rich plan and is convinced we can take control of the House, and Senate with labor friendly legislators in the 2012 elections. This is the only way we can assure our jobs, and collective bargaining right will be protected.

In solidarity:

xxx

In short, this AFSCME memo is irrefutable proof that the government shutdown was planned by the DFL. That fits with what Gov. Dayton told me at his trainwreck townhall here in St. Cloud. That’s when he said that he wouldn’t consider calling a special session to sign the transportation bill, which has almost nothing to do with balancing the budget.

Mothballing construction projects in the middle of the summer didn’t just put thousands of construction workers out of work. It put important public safety projects 3 weeks behind schedule.

For Ms. Cardinal to say that Republicans shut state government down isn’t just disgustingly dishonest. It’s proof that she’s a perfect fit for ABM and ProgressNow. ABM and ProgressNow are like her in that they’re only loosely tethered to the truth.

Finally, saying that the Photo ID constitutional amendment is divisive is deceitful. I wrote here about how divisive the Photo ID constitutional amendment isn’t:

According to our exclusive new SurveyUSA poll, 76% of Minnesotans say they’d vote in favor of voter ID. Only 18% oppose the idea.

Party affiliation – Yes, 92% of Republicans support voter ID. So do 76% of independents…and 59% of those wingnutty Democrats in Minnesota, too.

Issues that get 75+ percent of voters of all political persuasions to aqree isn’t a divisive issue. It’s a unifying issue.

Ms. Cardinal’s dishonesty is disgusting to the point that she’s earned the Ambassador Joe Wilson Dishonesty Under Fire Award. During the Plame scandal, journalists of all political persuasions said that the best way to determine whether Joe was lying was determining if his lips were moving.

If the cliche fits…

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Gov. Dayton is whining about a slush fund that he signed into law:

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Gov. Mark Dayton said he will meet next week with his economic development commissioner to discuss a new grant program that he is not very enthusiastic about.

Lawmakers passed a bonding bill earlier this month that created a $47.5 million fund for local economic development projects. Mankato, Rochester and St. Paul are among a growing list of cities lining up for grants after having their projects rejected from inclusion in the broader bonding bill.

Dayton told reporters today that he thinks the new fund is a “back-door” approach and saddles the commissioner with a process that is “not well-advised.”

“It just puts him in a very, very awkward situation of having to say no again to a lot of projects. There will probably be ten-times the number of dollars requested as there are available,” Dayton said.

Under the bonding bill, applicants can seek grants for a wide range of local projects, including those related to waste and drinking water, utilities, telecommunications and road and bridge work.

That’s what happens when you give RINO Larry Howes, Dave Senjem and a reckless-spending DFL governor the big sticks in spending money.

Senjem’s days as Senate GOP Leader better be numbered. He’s spent too much money to be called a conservative. I’m fine with him getting re-elected. I’m not fine with him having a leadership position. If a Republican votes for him in a leadership position, they’re instantly on my shit list.

As for the undefined pork, Gov. Dayton’s whining is a joke. He could’ve line-item vetoed that $47.5 million in pork out of the bill. It would’ve required a spine but it was definitely possible.

For him to now pretend that he’s been victimized is insulting. He wasn’t victimized. He just didn’t show a spine. That’s his shortcoming, nobody else’s.

Republicans had better say no to a bonding bill in 2013. They overspent the past 2 years. It’s time they started acting like fiscal conservatives. If they don’t, they’ll get swept from office 2 years from now.

As for Gov. Dayton, he’s history. He’s spent like recklessly. He’s clueless about economics. He’s yet to make an economic justification for why he wants to raise taxes. I don’t give a rip about fairness. I care about people having a shot at lasting prosperity.

He’s a tool of the unions. Whatever they want, he tries giving them. When they told him to violate the U.S. Constitution, he didn’t hesitate in signing an unconstitutional executive order to unionize child care small businesses.

That’s a direct violation of the First Amendment giving businesses the right to form their own associations to petition their government. They can’t be told that they can’t hire a lobbyist or that they must join a union. That’s their choice and their’s alone.

Gov. Dayton and the DFL are tools of the special interests. They don’t stand up to militant environmentalists. They haven’t told Tom Dooher and the other EdMinn lobbyists that they’re wrong. They’ve caved every time the unions have demanded something.

It’s time that they started putting families first. It’s time that they stopped looking out only for union families. All families deserve a fair shake. They aren’t getting it from the DFL.

Most importantly, it’s time they stopped with their reckless spending habits and their strangling regulations.

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The point Ron Brownstein made in this article is spot on:

While reveling in these fights, the president has not done nearly as much to explain what he would do in a second term, particularly to accelerate the still-sluggish economic recovery. Unless he fills in that picture more effectively, these wedge issues might not hold his key supporters, much less prevent further erosion among the groups, such as blue-collar and older whites, who resisted him even in 2008. Put simply, Obama may not win another term unless he provides Americans a better idea of what he would do with it.

When he gave the keynote speech at the Democrats’ national convention in 2004, he was inspirational. In 2008, he was a visionary in many people’s minds. This year, he’s sounded like an ordinary political hack.

People aren’t inspired by him. He isn’t fooling people, either. That’s why his coalition is crumbling. In 2008, he was a blank slate that sounded just inspirational enough to get people to create their personalized image of him.

Now he’s got a record. The blank slate was replaced with disgusting policy after disgusting policy. That’s inspirational in reverse. It’s inspiring President Obama’s opponents. That won’t get President Obama re-elected.

Factor in President Obama’s campaign team’s incompetence and it’s difficult to see him winning this November:

The most recent trouble arrived last Sunday in the person of Newark Mayor Cory Booker, who went fantastically off message when he said his fellow Democrats’ attacks on Mitt Romney’s background in private equity are “nauseating.” The Obama for America hazardous waste disposal team leapt into action, forcing Booker to record a hostage-video-like recantation of his comments by the end of the day. It was too late, though. Booker had tested the waters of intra-Democrat dissent and had found they were warm. Dianne Feinstein, Chris Coons, Steve Rattner, Ed Rendell, Artur Davis, Harold Ford Jr., Mark Warner, and Joe Manchin all followed him in.

This bunch isn’t the ‘Gang who couldn’t shoot straight’. Unfortunately for this administration, they’re the gang that formed a circular firing squad, then emptied a banana clip.

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I’m certain that the U.S. Coast Guard is just a pawn that the Obama administration is using to kill jobs. Still, this article is troubling. This is insanity:

GARRISON, Minn. (WCCO) – With its walleye chop and whitecaps, Lake Mille Lacs is more playground than place for commercial navigation.

But in March 2010, the U.S. Coast Guard issued an administrative ruling, claiming the lake was a federally navigable body of water and subject to limited federal authority.

The decision was based on historic circumstances dating back to the French fur trade, when Mille Lacs was reachable by canoes traveling up the Mississippi and Rum rivers.

Critics point out that Mille Lacs is not navigable because the Rum River is dammed at Anoka, preventing any commercial navigation.

Logic isn’t part of the government’s habits when it comes to regulations. The fact that commercial boats can’t get from the Mississippi to Mille Lacs apparently isn’t a big deal with the federal government.

As bad as that is, it’s just the tip of the iceberg:

While the launches that many resorts operate on Mille Lacs are inspected annually by the state of Minnesota, smaller boats and their guides are allowed to operate freely, just as long as they follow the state’s public fishing and boating laws.

While guide boats that take out 1 or 2 people aren’t given a formal inspection, they’re frequently stopped by game wardens while on the lake or at the boat ramps.

The guides that I’ve seen, and I’ve seen hundreds of them on Mille Lacs, pride themselves on being professionals, both in terms of catching fish and following the laws. They’re the most respectful fishermen on the water.

Apparently, that isn’t good enough for the Obama administration. This fits this administration’s desire to control people’s lives through regulations. Thankfully, the man that defeated northern Minnesota’s most famous control freak is fighting for regulatory sanity:

On May 17, Eighth District U.S. Rep. Chip Cravaak (R-Minn.), introduced the “Freedom to Fish Act,” legislation to stop the Coast Guard’s actions. Cravaak calls the Coast Guard ruling on Mille Lacs an intrusion and redundant of state enforcement.

The DFL is doing their best to paint Chip as being out of touch with the district. It’s something that isn’t selling well. While lefties like Tarryl Clark, Rick Nolan and Jeff Anderson pledge their allegiance to Mother Earth, whatever that is, Chip’s out in the district making common sense proposals that will help his constituents.

Here’s the worst part of the Coast Guard’s intrusion beyond their bounds:

Guide Tony Roach has seven others working for him. Just getting the Coast Guard’s license could cost each of them between $1,200 and $2,000, pricing many of these part-timers out of a job.

“It’s going to be a huge expense for them, considering the summer window is pretty short,” Roach said. “There’s really no commercial shipping, no navigation whatsoever out on this body of water, so other than public safety, I don’t see any need for it.”

That’s the bottom line. The Coast Guard’s actions aren’t justifiable, especially considering the jobs this assinine regulation would kill. Whoever thought of this regulation should be terminated ASAP. It’s stupid and it’s about to kill jobs.

Unfortunately, this administration is good at killing jobs through regulations. That’s why this administration will get abruptly terminated this November.

Good riddance.

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Earlier this week, I attended an education event that tipped a little too heavily into campaign-style advocacy than I thought appropriate, which I wrote about here. At the meeting, an organization called OurFutureMN made a presentation, including their “Community Pledge.”

I emailed Dr. Watkins, St. Cloud’s School Superintendent, Wednesday morning. Dr. Watkins called me less than an hour later. The conversation would best be described as constructive and worthwhile. That afternoon, St. Cloud School Board member Jerry von Korff emailed me. It’s fair to say that some of the things in Mr. Von Korff’s email are things that I found interesting. Here’s something that I think could find strong bipartisan support:

The cost of education is dependent upon (a) what we require school districts to do by law, and (b) the groundrules under which they are required by law to do it. Just to give you one example, the State of Minnesota imposes all sorts of rules regarding the construction and operation of school buildings that make those buildings way more expensive to build and to operate than a private school. We can’t establish the fair cost of building a public school without taking those requirements into account.

I say, look, if you want us to follow state law, then you have to allow us the cost of building it the state way. If you think that is too expensive, then you have to change the law and let us do it more cheaply.

The cost of running a school is driven by state law, as well. The state imposes labor constraints. Those labor constraints come with a price. The state has a special education mandate. Those mandates have a huge price. The state has only two logical choices. It should either fund the price of the mandate or change the mandate.

I suspect that a new school would be significantly cheaper if education lobbyists didn’t get a ton of unfunded mandates put into education funding bills. We’d have more money getting into the classrooms if school districts didn’t have to pay for things on a lobbyist’s wish list.

In short, it’s time to a) tell the lobbyists to take a hike and b) let taxpayers, engineers and school boards put building plans together. They know what they can afford. They know what’s needed. Ditto with curriculum.

It’s important, though, for school boards to question the administrators. They can’t be rubberstamps. Altogether too often, they make it all but impossible for parents and other taxpayers to have a significant say in matters.

That must change ASAP.

Without speaking for them, I’d be surprised if our local legislators wouldn’t be interested in listening to Mr. von Korff’s ideas if he approached them with a list of specific unfunded mandates. Eliminating meaningless unfunded mandates means either lower property taxes or more money making its way into classrooms. What legislator wouldn’t love authoring that bill?

That isn’t to say that this would fix all of K-12’s issues. It just means that the taxpayers would potentially be given a measure of protection.

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President Obama’s worst nightmares appear to have happened the last 3 weeks. In 2008, President Obama rode an aura of inevitability to victory. That aura has disappeared, thanks primarily to his pathetic showing in the Democratic primaries, the spate of recent polling showing him getting hit hard in the most important battleground states and the recent protests outside his fundraisers.

The first telltale sign that President Obama was in trouble came when a convicted felon serving time in a Texas prison got 41% of the vote in the West Virginia Democratic Primary, followed by a nobody getting 42% of the vote in the Arkansas Democratic Primary, followed closely by “Uncommitted” getting 42% of the vote in Kentucky.

In short, President Obama got less than 60% of the vote against a felon in prison, a nobody in Arkansas and someone who doesn’t exist in Kentucky. While pundits didn’t expect President Obama to be competitive in any of those states, the fact that Democrats voted against a sitting president in what was supposed to be an uncontested primary doesn’t speak volumes about his vulnerability.

It screams at the top of its lungs that he’s exceptionally vulnerable.

Then comes Quinippiac’s polling of Ohio:

From May 2–7, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,069 registered voters with a margin of error of +/- 3 percentage points.

If the election for President were being held today, and the candidates were Barack Obama the Democrat and Mitt Romney the Republican, for whom would you vote?
President Obama 45%
Mitt Romney 44%

President Obama has had a difficult time in Ohio since then. Ohio isn’t out of President Obama’s reach but it’s definitely slipping away. Then there’s the developing crisis (for Team Obama) in Florida:

Florida registered voters say 52-44 percent that the president does not deserve a second term in the Oval Office and by 52-44 percent give him a thumbs-down on his job approval.

“Gov. Mitt Romney has slipped into the lead in Florida and that standing is confirmed by his much better numbers than the president when voters are asked whether they view the candidates favorably or unfavorably. They view Romney favorably 44-35 percent, while Obama gets a negative 45-50 percent favorability,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant vice president of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

“The overall picture in Florida is positive for Romney, who is ahead 50-37 percent among men, while women are divided 44-45 percent. And the president is getting just 33 percent of white votes, compared to 85 percent of black votes and 42 percent of Hispanic votes.”

Florida registered voters say 52-44 percent that the president does not deserve a second term in the Oval Office and by 52-44 percent give him a thumbs-down on his job approval.

“Gov. Mitt Romney has slipped into the lead in Florida and that standing is confirmed by his much better numbers than the president when voters are asked whether they view the candidates favorably or unfavorably. They view Romney favorably 44-35 percent, while Obama gets a negative 45-50 percent favorability,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant vice president of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

“The overall picture in Florida is positive for Romney, who is ahead 50-37 percent among men, while women are divided 44-45 percent. And the president is getting just 33 percent of white votes, compared to 85 percent of black votes and 42 percent of Hispanic votes.”

President Obama can’t afford to lose both Florida and Ohio. That’s his nightmare scenario. If he loses those states, his administration is history. At that point, it’ll be difficult for him not to lose by 50-75 electoral votes.

Anytime that a president can’t overwhelmingly defeat an imprisoned felon, a person that nobody’s heard of and someone that doesn’t exist, it’s proof that he’s facing an uphill fight.

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If this Weekly Standard article is accurate, and I think it is, the American people’s frustration with President Obama is starting to seep out:

a couple dozen protesters held up signs like, “Out of Hope, Ready for Change,” “Debt Slavery,” “Obama’s Blvd. of Broken Promises” and “Bye Bye on Nov. 6th.” Some of them were calling out something that your pooler couldn’t hear. They were kept behind a yellow police tape far out of view of Potus or his donors.

That isn’t to say that these signs weren’t made by anti-Obama activists. It’s quite possible that they were. Still, it’s the first article I’ve read where activists have protested at one of his campaign events.

Think about this possibility. President Obama’s fundraising numbers have been disappointing. This spring, protest votes in the Democratic primaries have taken the luster off The One. Recent polling shows President Obama in trouble in key states. Couple those things with yesterday’s protests. I think those signs point to a summer of frustration for President Obama. It certainly isn’t a stretch to think that the American people’s frustration with this administration will spill out this summer.

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Gov. Dayton and the Executive Council must’ve figured they can’t keep postponing mineral lease auctions:

Minnesota’s Executive Council is set to act on 77 mineral exploration leases next week that have been delayed for a year because of concerns by private landowners that their rights could be infringed.

The council, composed of the governor and the state’s other top elected officials, twice considered the leases in 2011 but delayed action.

On Tuesday, however, notice came that the council will hold a special meeting May 31 to consider the leases. It’s expected the leases will be approved.

“My understanding is that the governor and some other members of the council wanted to move this away from their regular June meeting because of the interest. But DNR didn’t ask for this specific date or anything. The council set this,” said Larry Kramka, director of the Department of Natural Resources division of Lands and Minerals Division.

He said he knows of no changes to the original plan. “We haven’t been asked to remove any of the specific (leases). We haven’t changed anything,” Kramka said.

This is purely a political decision. Now that the election is nearing, the DFL can’t afford to look like they’re the lunatic fringe environmentalists. That would drive a wedge between the miners and the DFL.

Make no mistake, though. The Twin Cities Executive Council care more about the environmentalists than they care about the miners on the Range.

Kent Kaiser wrote a stinging editorial in October, 2011 about the Executive Council delayed the lease auctions for 6 months:

This month, Minnesota’s State Executive Council, which includes the governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general and state auditor, voted to delay 77 leases to explore for copper and nickel on private lands in northern Minnesota.

This short-sighted action was initiated by Gov. Mark Dayton and Secretary of State Mark Ritchie. It was unfortunate for the job situation in the Northland, and I know many Minnesotans are terribly disappointed.

After all, the people of Minnesota own the rights to minerals in the state, including those under private land. Anyone from Northeastern Minnesota knows this; I remember learning this fact in elementary school.

At the time, a handful of private property owners tried pushing the legislature into passing legislation changing the mineral rights. The legislature refused to take them seriously because it was apparent that they were stooges of the environmentalists.

This is rather telling:

Indeed, Dayton’s actions this month were more consistent with his actions two decades ago. At that time, when he was on the State Executive Council as state auditor, he called for the postponement of mining lease votes so he could consult first with the Sierra Club.

Gov. Dayton didn’t agree with miners then. He’s still fighting against them. When Prof. Kaiser wrote this editorial, it was after the Executive Council postponed taking action on lease auctions a second time.

Clearly, Gov. Dayton doesn’t care about the economy on the Iron Range. He’s just worried that the Iron Rangers will abandon the DFL in greater numbers this November.

According to the DNR, they didn’t change anything on the leases since the Executive Council voted to postpone the lease auctions:

He said he knows of no changes to the original plan. “We haven’t been asked to remove any of the specific (leases). We haven’t changed anything,” Kramka said.

It’s only a matter of time before the Iron Range abandons the DFL. What’s in it for them when the DFL is a wholly owned subsidiary of the treehuggers that inhabit the Arrowhead and the urban strongholds of St. Paul and Minneapolis.

Iron Rangers are predominantly pro-life, pro-Second Amendment and natural opponents of the anti-mining, pro-marxist treehuggers.

The DFL might’ve been the right fit for the Iron Range a generation ago. The DFL isn’t a good fit thanks to the treehuggers’ domination of the DFL.

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