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Bonding pressures mount ahead of session

For DFL Rep. Alice Hausman, next year’s bonding bill is a take-two proposition. The House Capital Investment Committee chair from St. Paul pushed for an $800 million package of construction projects last year, but watched it fail by five votes the day before session adjourned.

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Medical marijuana push teed up for 2014

When a bipartisan group of legislators threw a medical marijuana bill into the hopper during the last month of the 2013 legislative session, it wasn’t intended as an 11th-hour bargaining chip. Anticipating a short session in 2014, advocates said they were trying to set the stage for convincing lawmakers that they should join a growing list of states that allow patients to use the drug to alleviate pain.

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Session ’13 politics: Let the games begin

The last time DFLers controlled all the levers of power at the Capitol, during the 1989-90 legislative session, Duane Benson was the Republican Senate minority leader. Benson recalls making a floor speech at the time comparing the dynamic to a basketball contest between the Harlem Globetrotters and the Washington Generals.

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House DFL names assistant majority leaders

On Sunday, incoming House Majority Leader Erin Murphy congratulated the new assistant leaders over Twitter, naming Reps. Carly Melin (Hibbing), John Ward (Baxter), Leon Lillie (North St. Paul), Kim Norton (Rochester), John Persell (Bemidji), Diane Loefller (Minneapolis) and freshman Jacob Isaacson (Shoreview).

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6B House primary may turn on mining, jobs

Voters are faced with a familiar dilemma in the heart of the Minnesota Iron Range. The unexpected retirement of 26-year DFL Rep. Tom Rukavina at the end of session has left a big hole in DFL-friendly House District 6B, which stretches across cities like Virginia and Eveleth and includes some of the state’s most mining-dependent towns.

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CD 8 congressional primary is a toss-up

Anything could happen in the DFL primary in the 8th Congressional District. Three challengers — Jeff Anderson, Tarryl Clark and Rick Nolan — are running credible campaigns, and turnout is expected to be extremely low for the mid-August primary.

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Both parties figure to see a handful of consequential legislative primaries

A handful of August primary elections are heating up across the state thanks to the new redistricting map, an uptick in legislative retirements and widespread dissatisfaction with the job lawmakers are doing in St. Paul.

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