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February 28, 2006

A flurry of activity

• What a magical time of year. Stadium season is upon us and is in full swing. I've made some more changes to the Voter's Guide and the totals are now:

   Pro-American (Pro-stadium) legislators: 78
   Anti-American (Anti-stadium) legislators: 49
   Unknown: 7

Can you believe it? Could this be the year? Truth be told, I would be stunned. I know people are feeling more optimistic than ever, but if a stadium bill ever passed I would be absolutely amazed. I don't want to bum you out, but it would just plain be amazing to the point of almost being impossible. Let me put it this way: when this stadium bill passes the House Taxes committee, that is when I will start feeling optimistic. Not before.

Recent changes to the Voter's Guide include Zellers, Erhardt, Mullery, Walker, and Vandeveer all now in the YES column. Of course, I can't confirm any of this (this is all a guess on my part) but I am hearing a lot which leads me to believe the votes are there. Can it get to the floor of the House? We'll see.

Also, I changed Otremba back to a No. I just don't believe she will vote Yes. Curt in Grand Forks is checking that for me.

• Secondly, today should be an interesting day for Mike Opat. According to the PiPress, Opat will seek a HC board resolution authorizing him to renegotiate a contract with the Twins to build a stadium in Hennepin County. As per usual, I'm sure my good friend Linda Koblick will have all her ducks in a row and give Opat all that he can handle. Please, Linda, please go easy on him. As you know there are a lot of people in Hennepin County that want this to happen, myself included, of course.

According to the article, the added $30 million to the overall stadium price tag will be the biggest sticking point in any future negotiations. I really have no idea where this will go, but I hope Pohlad doesn't ruin what seems to be some stadium good will out there by throwing it back in the County's face. Unfortunately, I think we can all see the writing on the wall on this one: the Twins will expect the County to pay. This, in my opinion, will be a huge mistake and may change some votes back to the No column.

• Finally, I got an interesting email from Jim in St. Paul yesterday that went a little like this:

I was tempted to throw this out last year but maybe this is the year. If our esteemed legislators can finally see the light and pass a Twins ballpark bill this session I would like to extend an invite to all loyal Greet Machiners to come down some Saturday afternoon to my place of business, Summit Brewery, for a tour and celebration. I may even go through my archives and get out for display all my St. Paul related ballpark campaign items (I have a bunch). Like I said, hopefully this is the year and some celebration would definitely be in order.

How about that! A celebration at the Summit Brewery in St. Paul would be awesome. Thanks for the offer Jim! And of course, all "Greet Machiners" would be welcome (even you anti-stadium bums). And I must say, if Jim in St. Paul is feeling optimistic ... that really gives me pause. I dare say Jim knows more about this issue than me! Thanks for the day brightener Jim! I will be there!

Posted by snackeru at February 28, 2006 8:30 AM | Stadiums

Comments

Jim, thanks for the invite! I dare say that if a stadium gets built, Shane may not be sober for about a week.

Posted by: Cheesehead Craig at February 28, 2006 9:40 AM

That would be a nice celebration, Jim! And hopefully afterward, we can all take in a game at the Dome and not discuss stadiums at all. (I may be an "anti-stadium bum" to Shane, but first and foremost, I'm a Twins fan, and I'd like to once again be able to focus on the game. Even just for one drunken afternoon...)

Posted by: spycake at February 28, 2006 3:10 PM

Holy cow, spycake ... ain't that the truth. To actually be able to watch a game without having to think about this crap? That would be heavenly! Yes, we will definitely have to take in a game, and stadium discussions will be off limits!

Unfortunately, then my horrible knowledge of baseball in general will be exposed. But I am willing to pay that price!

Posted by: Shane at February 28, 2006 3:14 PM

Greet Machiners (I'm likin' that term)-
If this proposed celebration does actually happen, I will also extend some invites to assorted politicos. Then we can get a few beers in them and ask them what took so damn long.
-Jiminstpaul

Posted by: Jiminstpaul at February 28, 2006 6:34 PM

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