Day: April 13, 2011

The Split Political Personality of Minnesota

Minnesota is certainly not the only state to have a split political personality, but right now it really stands out as unusual!

My colleague, Professor Steve Watnik, pointed this out today, and made me really think about this, so here goes!

Minnesota had great political luminaries in the past, including Hubert Humphrey, Walter Mondale, Eugene McCarthy, and Paul Wellstone, and continues to have some today in Senators Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar, and Congressman Keith Ellison, who is the first Muslim in Congress.

But it is also the state of two potential GOP candidates for President: the solid conservative former Governor Tim Pawlenty, who has managed to avoid looking or acting loony or weird, as so many others in the party have appeared; and Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, who has no problem in looking loony and weird, and seems to revel in it, as she displays total ignorance and outrageous comments while claiming to be religious and led by God’s command. Only Sarah Palin may be more outrageous in her behavior and comments than Bachmann, but certainly it is a close race between the two ladies!

So Minnesota is likely to see two home staters competing for the nomination, along with others, and Pawlenty seems legitimate, while Bachmann most certainly does not, all adding to the allure of following Minnesota politics for the Presidential Election year of 2012!

Paul Krugman And Robert Reich Challenge Obama: Stop Giving In To Opposition Republicans!

Leading liberal, progressive voices such as NY Times columnist Paul Krugman, winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics and Professor of Economics at Princeton University, and Robert Reich, former Labor Secretary under Bill Clinton, and Professor of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley, have called upon President Obama to stop giving in to Republicans, as they claim he did in December’s and this month’s budget deals.

They call upon the President to work against the temptation to copy the Republicans on the budget issue, and instead call for tax increases on the top two percent, and support the Medicare and Social Security system by recognizing that we must all have shared sacrifice and expect the closing of tax loopholes and the raising of taxes on the middle class, which should have gone up during the Bush administration to cover the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the prescription plan for seniors, all of which was paid for with borrowed money.

This is a bold statement by both, and one awaits Barack Obama’s reaction to the Paul Ryan plan to change Medicare to a voucher system and avoid any new taxes.

The Obama speech will be made public today, and it may have a great effect on united backing of Obama within his party for the 2012 election, and certainly will frame the debate over the budget and the raising of the debt ceiling, challenges the country faces before the year ends!