After the 2008-2009 US Senate Recount here in MN, David Lillehaug, leader of the Franken legal squad that ran circles around Norm Coleman's LSAT flunkees, went back to less-public practice. But in 2013 he got a new job. DFL governor Mark Dayton appointed him as a Justice on the MN Supreme Court.
Now except for major deals like a Senate Recount or changing the legal definition of marriage etc., state Supreme Courts and their members tend to have (and like) a rather low profile. But now, this summer, thanks a little bit to David Lillehaug, thanks a lot more to Kossack diarist Intheknow, and most especially, mega thanks to the Minnesota GOP, the Supreme Court is, well, if not back in the news, at least enjoying laughing in the wings.
Below the Orange Cat-Snarl of Yarn I'll explain.
...the Battle did NOT happen. Lee did not meet Meade, Chamberlain did not order a desperate bayonet charge to save Little Round Top for the Union, and Pickett did not dress his lines on the west slope of Cemetery Ridge to gather for the final doomed lunge at the Union center.
Not June 29, 1913.
...the Address did NOT happen. The White House party did not spend the night at Mr. Willis' house, orator Edward Everett did not deliver a two hour speech to the assembled thousands, and Abraham Lincoln did not utter 271 words of immortality.
Not June 29, 1913.
Southern veterans' train to Gettysburg, 1913
A Reunion opened.
THE largest ever Reunion of Civil War veterans ever held began June 29, 1913. Not just veterans of Gettysburg but all the men who had served in the military, on either side, and were honorably discharged, were asked to come.
Well, not quite all. The planning began in 1911, with meetings between the GAR (Grand Army of the Republic) and the UCV (United Confederate Veterans), the respective national veterans' organizations. The GAR was more than a social club for old and then older guys recounting their wartime heroics. It was a powerful political force (in the early 1890s over 30% of the ENTIRE federal budget was spent on Union veteran pensions), a prestigious, influential society....and it was INTEGRATED, utterly stunning for the time. The rule was "If you wore the Blue you were in." (Membership was open only to the veterans themselves. Because of this rule (same in the UCV) the organization eventually died out (although not until 1949.) So when the planning began in 1911 the GAR men assumed all of their members would be welcome at Gettysburg.
Greetings oh Great Orange website!
Since it looks like Al Franken (D-MN) will NOT have a recounted Senate race coming up in 2014 (for openers, the MN GOP ain't got nobody and they ain't got no money. Two strikes right off the bat), your friendly lunatic with a laptop is working on another project. It is a 1 hour documentary with a target market of the PBS/History (non-Alien) Channel/Military Channel. I have a script and a budget. I have assembled several hundred still photos, some rare film clips, a half dozen academicians as "talking head" armchair experts. The story centers around the 1913 Civil War veterans REUNION at Gettysburg.
While I have good material for the broad sweep/big picture side of the story, I need help on the individual/personal side. You know how this goes:
(Narrator: "When John Perkins got back from the war he married Matilda.
(Slow pan of their sepia wedding picture).
Two years later they moved West to the Nebraska frontier."
(Wedding picture dissolves into shot of sod house on treeless expanse.)
Expert in front of shadowed bookcase: "Lots of veterans went West." etc....
NOT that there's a *cough, cough, "Ken Burns", cough cough* FORMULA to these, you understand. No sir-ee! This is COMPLETELY original stuff. :-))
So do you have a Civil War ancestor? Or do you know of a veteran' story? (Your own "John Perkins" in the example above?) One who fought in the Civil War, for the Union, for the Confederacy, and/or as a USCT man? More crucially, Do you know something about their story AFTER the WAR? Are you willing to consider having him be part of a documentary? If so, follow me below the Orange Kossack Kroissant for details.
Given how this went down in only 5 ballots, I am going to stand down from Def Con 1 (I WAS READY!!) and announce to Daily Kos there will be
NO Winerev Recount diaries for this papal election.
However, below the fold, I do have a minor rant to register.
56 days! That's right! Only 56 days of screaming as we finish crossing the fiscal street. Having stepped off the fiscal curb at 2:00 o'clock in the morning (by Senate reckoning) and at 9:00pm the night of the 1st (by House reckoning)---put those together and that's quite the hangover you're dealing with there--- we are all now crossing the fiscal street, and headed for the next fiscal curb.
One snazzy term pollutes the air from the idling traffic as Congress staggers forward, reeling off the hood ornament of a '67 Chrysler Imperial: SEQUESTER!
"A half a trillion in Defense cuts!" screams the GOP and their Military-Industrial-Complex masters. They HATE sequester.
"A half a trillion in Non-Defense cuts!" scream the Kossacks and people of compassion. They HATE sequester.
But its worth looking at the terms of the deal that gave both sides the sequester, both for what's IN the Sequester, and, more importantly, what's OUTSIDE the sequester. Details below the Orange Snow Fence that got run over by the snow plow....
Incumbent Democratic Senator Amy Klobuchar continues to expand her tie with Some Dude Kurt Bills.
Back about September 18 the Minnesota Poll showed Klobuchar tied with a paper-thin 57-28 tilt that might possibly be taken as tilt-i-ness.
Now, with one week left, Klobuchar TRAILS Bills by 10 points, 47-37....among GOP voters.
Because of this cratering in her support among members of the opposite party, we here at CNN feel comfortable ignoring her 66% of the independent vote, her 85% of the Democratic vote, and continue to list her new 65-22 lead as a tie.
Back to you, Wolf! ;-)
(This snark with real numbers was brought to you by your ever-lovin' WineRev! Trick or Treat!)
(All numbers for REAL from Minneapolis Star Tribune YESTERDAY..)
The Minneapolis Star-Tribune (Minnesota's largest newspaper) does a lot of things wrong. But one of the things they do RIGHT is that every two years they commission a reputable polling outfit to conduct what the Star-Tribune calls the "Minnesota Poll." This time they hired Pulse Opinion Research to poll the MN 8th Congressional District, which is anchored by Duluth at the southwest corner of Lake Superior, and stretches west along the Canadian border almost to North Dakota (the so-called "Iron Range', named for the iron mines in the area) and south to the northern ex-urbia/sprawl of the Twin Cities. (See map
The latest news (this morning) is that Democratic challenger Rick Nolan now LEADS incumbent Chip Cravaack (R/Tea Party) by 50-43. (1000 voters polled; Margin of Error: 3.0%)
Link to full story HERE.
Some further details past the orange frosted breakfast croissant...
"She'll wipe the floor with him!"
"This will be epic; a landslide!"
Many of us who read, comment and post diaries here are political activists and polling junkies. 2 points change in Nebraska's Box Butte County Water Commissioner's race and the Kos website is plastered with diaries and comments proclaiming: "This is a bellwether for the state! Obama/Romney/Kerry/Nelson is going to romp/is DOOMED I tell ya!"
But if we lift our eyes from the daily deluge of polls that will be with us from now through November 6 (and the yeoman/yeowoman/yeoperson/yeodude work that Nir and Singiser do to post, analyze and just keep up with) it's important to keep in mind the 39% rule of Presidential Politics. In response to a comment I made recently, some crazy, mixed-up fans urged me to "make this comment into a DIARY!", I have unpacked, buttered and jellied this idea just below the Orange Croissant for your breakfast reading.
Monday afternoon the MN Supreme court handed down two rulings that impact the fall election. 2 proposed Constitutional amendments are on the ballot, a Voter-ID-and-Suppress-Democratic-Turnout-Amendment, and a Marriage-is-Only-One Man-One-Woman-At-a-Time (Fingers-Crossed) Amendment.
The questions before the Court were A) Should the Voter ID Amendment appear on the ballot at all? and B) What Title/Description of the Amendment in each case should appear on the actual ballot?
On A) a group of good-government types (the MN ACLU, the League of Women Voters, other assorted anarchists and wild-eyed maniacs) argued the entire Voter ID Amendment should be ruled off the ballot.
On B) the GOP-controlled lege wrote out titles for both of these when they put them on the ballot. MN case law and precedent going back to 1919 says the MN Secretary of State has the sole right to title/describe such ballot measures.
Sec. of State Mark Ritchie (D) did just that and the MN GOP did not like it one bit, so they sued. The Supreme Court heard oral arguments on July 31 and as of about 2:30 yesterday afternoon (just in time for the ballot printing deadline) handed down their rulings on both.....below the fold.
Hit-and-Run, Kiss-and-Tell Version:
For those who like Fast News to go with their FAST FOOD/FAST WORK/SPEED DATING lifestyle, the short of it is on Friday the 13th a MN state board FINED the MN GOP $30,000 for electoral voting law shenanigans in 2010, there may be CRIMINAL prosecutions afoot, and the MN GOP is INDEED financially on the hook for half a million dollars in legal fees that they CAN'T pay. And, because of the GOP party debt, it is at least somewhat an open question whether they have $30K cash on hand to actually, you know, pay the fine.
Velocity viewers can all move along now.
Cross-Posted at Minnesota Progressive Project
Slightly longer schadenfreude version:
Ah, still here? Why, thank you.
Compared to Willard the Rmoney (R-1%) discovering in a painfully public way what it's like to be on the receiving end of genuine attack ads---and NOT handling it well--- events here among the Minnesota Republican Party rank as shower stall scum and mildew.
Still, when the temps have been 90 degrees plus, with heat indexes over 100, you start to focus on the small stuff: how to stay cool? The number of minutes it takes to dry out between wettings in the pool? Myself, I wonder how many 21-day free downloads of an iApp some friends and I put together (iTunes store> "Lifestyle"> AffirMe; an affirmation delivered daily to your iPhone) there might have been yesterday? How many ice cubes are still alive in THIS glass of iced tea?
But $26,900 in fines levied? (That was no ordinary parking meter, let me tell you!) Another $3000 levied PERSONALLY against the former chair of the Party? (That guy got off light, I tell ya!) Well, that's a dose of schaudenfreude ("to rejoice at someone else's misfortune") that will cool the fevered brow of any progressive or Democrat.
Some of the icy, slurpy details (short of brain freeze) are in brief just below the sign of the 2 Orange Squirrels inside the Hamster Wheels.
Remember back in early March when Minnesota was one a trio of states (along with Missouri and Colorado) that Rick Santorum swept all in 1 night to become THE alternative to Willard?
Here in MN the "beauty contest"/"Presidential preference" split among GOP voters was
Willard E. Sketch 17%.
But then, the plot thinned........ (its the GOP after all.)
Many of you were kind enough to stop by the last diary with tips and encouragement. Many thanks.
Now I had accumulated over 900 still photos of the 1913 Gettysburg Reunion of Civil War veterans, collected some rare film clips from the event (really!) and learned a ton of stuff I never knew about it (54,000 vets ended up coming, from 47 of the 48 states (New Mexico if you need to know), and for instance, there were 200 reporters that kept the Western Union telegraph office open 24/7. The Times of London and The Evening Telegraph both got trans-Atlantic cables twice a day from their reporters. This was a BIG deal.)
And you make this into a documentary HOW?