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MInnesota Caucus Live Blog

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3:43 p.m. Caucuses will end in Minnesota at 8:00 p.m. CST. The Democrats will allocate 72 of its 88 convention delegates from the caucus vote tonight: 47 delegates are allocated based on the caucus results in each of the state's eight congressional districts, while 25 are allocated based on the caucus vote statewide.

On the Republican side a nonbinding presidential preference straw poll will be conducted only; none of the state's 41 convention delegates will be allocated tonight.

8:52 p.m. Republican (6% reporting)
Romney = 32%
Huckabee = 30%
McCain = 23%
Paul = 14%

8:52 p.m. Democratic (11% reporting)
Obama = 66%
Clinton = 32%

Although this contest is nonbinding, it looks like Romney could very well use another state in his column. If Obama continues to dominate Clinton, that may explain McCain's performance if he ends up in third place (independents have had a strong voice in Minnesota for many years).

9:26 p.m. Fox News projects Barack Obama the winner of the Minnesota Caucuses, as predicted by Smart Politics earlier in the week.

10:06 p.m. Republican (32% reporting)
Romney = 40%
Huckabee = 22%
McCain = 21%
Paul = 16%

10:17 p.m. CNN has named Mitt Romney the victor of the (nonbinding) Minnesota caucuses - Romney's 5th win of the night thus far.

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Remains of the Data

Which States Own the Best Track Record in Backing Eventual GOP Presidential Nominees?

Nine states (each with primaries) have an unblemished record in voting for the eventual Republican nominee since 1976 - and not all host contests on the back end of the calendar.

Political Crumbs

Evolving?

When Scott Walker "punted" back in February after being asked if he was comfortable with the idea of evolution he added, "That's a question a politician shouldn't be involved in one way or the other." However, it may very well be a question that is asked at one of the upcoming GOP debates this year. In South Carolina during the first GOP debate in 2012, FOX News' Juan Williams asked Tim Pawlenty, "Do you equate the teaching of creationism with the teaching of evolution as the basis for what should be taught for our nation's schools?" Pawlenty replied, "There should be room in the curriculum for study of intelligent design" but that it was up to the local school districts if it should be in a science class or comparative theory class. At the fourth Republican debate held in California, Jon Huntsman addressed the GOP becoming "anti-science" thusly: "Listen, when you make comments that fly in the face of what 98 out of 100 climate scientists have said, when you call into question the science of evolution, all I'm saying is that, in order for the Republican Party to win, we can't run from science. We can't run from mainstream conservative philosophy."


73 Months and Counting

January's preliminary Bureau of Labor Statistics numbers show Minnesota's unemployment rate of 3.7 percent was once again lower than Wisconsin's 5.0 percent. That marks the 73rd consecutive month in which Minnesota has boasted a lower jobless rate than its neighbor to the east dating back to January 2009 including each of the last 67 months by at least one point. The Gopher State has now edged Wisconsin in the employment border battle for 204 of the last 216 months dating back to February 1997. Wisconsin only managed a lower unemployment rate than Minnesota for the 12 months of 2008 during this 18-year span.


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