Minnesota Republicans are preparing for their new role as the minority party at the state Capitol. As they position themselves for the 2014 elections, GOP leaders are considering how aggressive the party should be in trying to block DFL initiatives. Meanwhile, calls for revisiting the candidate selection process are growing after U.S. Senate candidate Kurt Bills was buried in Amy Klobuchar's re-election landslide.
St. Paul City Attorney Sarah Grewing said Friday that she won't pursue criminal charges against former Minnesota Republican Party chairman Tony Sutton for fundraising irregularities. The matter has already led to fines against Sutton and the GOP. Gerwig wrote in a letter to The Associated Press that it would be hard to prove Sutton was willfully violating a state law.
The Minnesota Campaign Finance Board Friday imposed fines on the Minnesota Republican Party, former chairman Tony Sutton and a separate corporation over the financing of the recount in the 2010 governor's race between Republican Tom Emmer and Democrat Mark Dayton. The state GOP was fined $26,900, while Sutton and Count Them All Properly Inc. were fined $3,000 each.
The lawsuit by groups trying to block a proposed constitutional amendment requiring voters to show photo ID is running into opposition from the state's Republican leaders. Senate Majority Leader David Senjem said he and his GOP colleagues "intend to protect the right of citizens to vote on this important issue of election integrity."
Four years after being barred from speaking at the Minnesota GOP Convention, U.S. Rep. Ron Paul got a warm welcome Friday at the state's Republican gathering in St. Cloud. Paul didn't talk about his suspended bid for the GOP presidential nomination, but instead shared his message of limited government and personal liberty.
State Rep. Kurt Bills is the Minnesota Republican Party's pick to face U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar in the November election. The first-term Republican nabbed the endorsement to challenge the Democratic incumbent after two ballots at the Minnesota GOP Convention Friday in St. Cloud.
The committee found no evidence that theft or any other crime contributed to the Minnesota Republican Party's $2 million debt. The panel made several recommendations aimed at preventing the mismanagement that did produce the debt.
The Minnesota Republican party owed their landlord more than $100,000 after not paying rent for several months. Details of the new lease agreement were not disclosed. An eviction hearing scheduled for Tuesday has since been cancelled.
The state Republican Party's financial situation is so bad the party skipped a couple of rent payments on its St. Paul headquarters. As the party struggles to pay off a debt of one million dollars, the national GOP is worried about the state party's ability to help Republican candidates this fall.
Senators first called the piece an update to constituents on legislative business. But spokesman Steve Sviggum says it did have the web address of a political fundraising site. Sviggum says the GOP will reimburse the state for the cost of the brochures but DFLers want the senators involved punished.
State officials have opened an investigation following allegations that the Republican Party may have violated campaign finance rules. The Minnesota GOP is $2 million in debt. That includes $415,000 of debt that party officials reportedly failed to disclose. The Pioneer Press says the GOP could face federal penalties, as well.
The CEO of TCF Bank has been an outspoken and active supporter of the Republican Party and given hundreds of thousands of dollars to Republican causes over the years, but now says he's stepping back a little. He tells Minnesota Public Radio in an interview that he's disgusted with the process and says, "I'm probably more of a libertarian than a Republican these days."
The state's Republican Party on Friday disclosed new financial information, including $415,211 in debt that had never been reported. Party officials say they've found no evidence that anything illegal occurred, though, as the Star Tribune reports, the undisclosed debt could result in new fines. The party's outstanding obligations now total $2 million, including $700,000 owed to lawyers involved in the recount.