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Rudy Takala's Columns

Republican Party of Minnesota

Some Thoughts on Civility Among Minnesota Republicans

7/21/14 Update:Bill Jungbauer, a member of the State Republican Executive Committee and the chairman of the Republican Party in Congressional District 2, provided some additional insights in comments at the bottom of this post.

Michael Brodkorb on Saturday published an accounting of the Republican Party of Minnesota’s internal politics. It described the tension that State Executive Committee member Diane Johnson was experiencing because of her opposition to Jeff Johnson, the party’s endorsed candidate for governor.

Doubling the “Good Taxes”

Two Minnesota Republicans, Sen. Carla Nelson and Rep. Mike Benson, have proposed doubling the state’s excise tax on cigarettes from $1.23 to $2.52 per pack. Nelson suggested that at some point in the future, the revenue could be used to replace some taxes on commercial property. “It’s getting rid of a bad tax for a good tax,” she said.
Before using it to lower commercial property taxes, the legislators suggested that the intent would be to pay back $2 billion borrowed from Minnesota’s schools to pay for state spending.

Minnesota GOP Chair Sutton Resigns

According to a letter by state GOP Chair Tony Sutton that appeared in the Star Tribune today,  he is stepping down as chairman of the Minnesota Republican Party, less than seven months after being re-elected. You can view the letter byclicking here.
Several things about this are notable. I will list them here in summary format and expand upon it more within the next couple of days. As those involved in the party already know, the State Central Committee is meeting tomorrow and will hold a special election to fill the position of deputy chairman.

December 13th Simply Right: Judge Tad Jude & Radio Host Sue Jeffers

On Tuesday, December 13th, I will be hosting or participating in multiple events at Tobies Restaurant & Bakery in Hinckley, Minnesota beginning at 6:00 p.m. The first two guests to commit to the event are 10th Judicial District Judge Tad Jude, elected in 2010 to serve our region until 2016, and talk radio host Sue Jeffers. I will announce more special guests closer to the event.
As I am also the chairman of the Pine County Republicans, I will be chairing a meeting of that group at 6:00 p.

Endorsement of David Fitzsimmons for MNGOP Deputy Chairman

In an e-mail sent to State Central Committee members last Monday, Minnesota GOP Deputy Chair Michael Brodkorb announced that he was stepping down from his position to help state Sen. Mike Parry run for Congress against Democratic Rep. Tim Walz.
Michael Brodkorb was never exceptionally popular with the GOP base. When he ran for his second term for the position earlier this year, he received 255 votes from the committee to 83 votes for his opponent, Sheldon Beilke. Sheldon had never been involved in politics before; in his mid-twenties, he registered to vote only after making the decision to seek the second-highest position in the state party.
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