Christopher Magan / St. Paul Pioneer Press
ST. PAUL — Health care was a top issue during the 2018 campaign and Minnesota lawmakers have wasted no time detailing their ideas for improving the system by making it more affordable and accessible. The challenge is Republicans and Democrats have vastly different ideas on the best ways to accomplish those goals. Members of the Republican-led Senate on Wednesday, Jan. 16, pitched the idea that patients with better relationships with their doctors and a clearer understanding of the price of procedures and drugs would lower overall health care costs.
ST. PAUL — Minnesota Republicans had high hopes this would be the year they would break the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party’s grip on the state’s constitutional offices. An open race for attorney general seemed like their best bet. But Democratic candidate Congressman Keith Ellison was poised to disappoint them, according to election results late Tuesday, Nov. 6.
ST. PAUL — Union workers, business leaders and political activists all do it — pool money to influence votes. In what's shaping up to be the most closely watched election in recent memory, the majority of campaign spending likely won't come from the candidates seeking office or their political parties, but from outside special-interests groups.
ST. PAUL — The number of Minnesotans without health insurance climbed by 17,563 last year, driving up the uninsured rate to 4.4 percent, but the state continues to have one of the best rates of overall medical coverage in the nation. Altogether, 242,509 Minnesotans lacked health insurance in 2017, with black and Hispanic residents having the largest uninsured rates at 17 percent, according to the latest data from the U.S. Census Bureau.
ST. PAUL -- The race to be Minnesota’s next governor has already cost more than $3.5 million and the five top candidates in the running have plenty of cash to spend before the Aug. 14 primary. The two Republicans and three Democrats hoping to make it to the November election have raised nearly $5 million this year, according to pre-primary campaign finance reports.
ST. PAUL—Minnesota has a new online tool to help outdoor enthusiasts plan trips to state and regional parks and trails. The Minnesota Great Outdoors website, launched Tuesday, allows park-goers to search a state map of parks and trails and compare amenities. "Previously, you would have to know which office or region managed the park or trail you were looking for. Now, you have a clear, easy-to-navigate launchpad to find all of the information you need to plan your trip," said Commissioner Tom Landwehr, of the state Department of Natural Resources, in a statement.
ST. PAUL—Minnesota lawmakers are trading in their legislating loafers for door-knocking sneakers as they prepare to hit the campaign trail. Their first stop will be at party conventions the first weekend in June, where they will anoint preferred candidates for governor, two U.S. Senate seats, eight congressional districts and constitutional offices like secretary of state and attorney general. Republicans are gathering in Duluth while Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party members are convening in Rochester.
ST. PAUL—House Republicans in the state Legislature want to cut Minnesota's second-tier tax rate as part of their plans to align the state's tax code with recent federal changes. Rep. Greg Davids, R-Preston, who chairs the House taxes committee, released a proposal Saturday that he said would simplify state taxes so residents will get the most out of the recent federal tax cut bill.
PAUL -- Minnesota’s opioid epidemic was more deadly than ever in Ramsey County last year, taking the lives of 72 people, a 16 percent increase over the year before. The urgent need to address the crisis came into sharp focus again Thursday, April 19, as law enforcement officials announced a counterfeit prescription drug containing the powerful synthetic opioid fentanyl killed the rock star Prince in 2016.
ST. PAUL—Minnesota continues to have among the nation's best scores on a biennial assessment of students' math and reading skills, but large gaps remain between students of color and their white classmates. Results from the 2017 National Assessment of Educational Progress, also called the Nation's Report Card, were released Tuesday, April 10. Every two years, more than half a million fourth- and eighth-graders from across the nation take the assessments.