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Patching things up: Feuding Gov. Dayton and DFL leader set for joint conference


It's been a rollercoaster month for Governor Mark Dayton and House Majority Leader Tom Bakk.

Within the space of a few weeks, the two Democrats have gone from throwing jabs like "backstabber" to scheduling a joint news conference, which is set for next week, the Associated Press reports.

The two found themselves at odds over a round of pay raises Dayton had issued some of his commissioners at the beginning of the year. The raises, which totaled around $800,000, incited pushback from Republicans, but Bakk grabbed headlines earlier this month when he led the DFL-controlled senate in a vote suspending the pay hikes.

Dayton apparently hadn't seen it coming. He complained that the move "blindsided" him, and that Bakk had stabbed him the back. According to the AP report, Bakk said it was a miscommunication.

But the two seem to be communicating now. Since the rift between them opened up, lawmakers have taken steps to resolve the pay dispute, and the two top DFL'ers are eyeing the next legislative challenge – their joint press conference will focus on the DFL's transportation priorities, the Star Tribune reports.

The paper says the two ended up talking one on one at a DFL breakfast meeting Wednesday morning, quoting Bakk as saying: "The governor and I just have way too much work to do to be at odds with each other this session."

"I think we're fine," he added.

No reaction from the governor's camp yet.

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