Monthly Archives: June 2010

Don Fraser thinks early childhood education is key to combatting Minneapolis’ achievement gap.

By Craig Stellmacher

Former Mayor and Congressman Don Fraser thinks early childhood education is key to combatting Minneapolis’s achievement gap. Don Fraser spoke at Minneapolis City Councilman’s monthly breakfast, at Mercado Central on east Lake Street June 25 2010. He became involved with early childhood education when School Superintendent Richard Green asked for his support to narrow the achievement gap. Mayor Fraser became a backer of Head Start, but he wonders if today it’s funded enough, and enrolling enough. He also brings up in this video two other solutions that have been shown to raise achievement : Longer school days, and longer school years. Continue Reading →

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Mark Dayton : Education is critical to Minnesota’s future and how to pay for it.

Last week we heard at the Governor Candidate’s Education Debate, that Minnesota enrolls 1 in 3, compared to 1 in 7 nationally for early childhood education.  Countless studies seem to indicate it’s huge advantage that pays off later in life.  I start there with Mark Dayton.  (Partial transcript, there’s more in the video.)
 
Dayton : “I volunteered in a Head Start Program my Senior year in college, 1968-69, it was known back then that Head Start made a tremendous difference in school readiness, for the children who went through that experience, and nationwide it’s less than half of the children who are eligible for Head Start today, that can be funded, and in Minnesota it’s even worse than that it’s about a third.”  
How do we explain that? Continue Reading →

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Don’t Listen To This! – Kagan & Feinstein On Guns

Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan draws laughter when Senator Dianne Feinstein asks if they can have a “heart to heart” in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee and a live TV audience. Kagan “Just you and me” Feinstein “Just you and me and nobody else” (laughter) Another Senator (Leahy?) “Don’t anybody in the room listen” Continue Reading →

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Kagen’s One Pledge:Impartiality, Hard Work

Before the US Senate Judiciary Committee, Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan says in her opening statement:”I will make no pledges this week other than this one: That if confirmed, I will remember and abide by all these lessons. I will listen hard to every party before the court and to each of my colleagues. I will work hard and I will do my best to consider every case impartially, modestly, with commitment to principle and in accordance with law.” Continue Reading →

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Sen Franken:Supreme Court Caving To Corporations

Senator Al Franken (D-Minnesota) gave this opening statement before the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan. Transcript:Thank you Mr. Chairman.  General Kagan, I’m last.  Every Senator who has spoken before me has sworn to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States.”  And so have I. There are few things that we do that are more important to fulfilling that oath than making sure that the Justices of the United States Supreme Court are brilliant, humane, and just individuals.  But these hearings are also a learning experience for Minnesotans and all Americans watching at home.  Before I joined the Senate, I watched at least part of every Supreme Court confirmation hearing that was televised.  And I think part of my job here is to continue that learning experience for the American people.  Now, last year, I used my time during these hearings to highlight what I think is one of the most serious threats to our Constitution and to the rights it guarantees the American people: the activism of the Roberts Court.   I noted that for years, conservatives running for the Senate have made it almost an article of faith that they won’t vote for activist judges who make law from the bench. Continue Reading →

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US Senator Robert Byrd’s Final Days: Longest Serving Congressman Dies At 92

US Senator Robert C. Byrd died this morning at age 92.  The West Virginia Democrat was the longest serving member of Congress in US History. His Senate website reports Senator Byrd died peacefully at approximately 3 a.m. at Inova Fairfax Hospital. This is video from Senator Byrd’s final hearing as chair of the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee. The video from April 13 shows he is frail, but still fiery and has a sense of humor. Continue Reading →

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US-UK World Cup Beer Bet Payoff

President Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron settle a World Cup bet and speak to the media after meeting at the G20 Summit in Toronto, Canada. Transcript:
PRESIDENT OBAMA: All right, everybody set up? Careful. Don’t hurt each other.PRIME MINISTER CAMERON: — upsetting the beer, so work together here. (Laughter.) PRESIDENT OBMAA: Let me begin by saying that the last conversation I had with David Cameron was before the — well, I guess it wasn’t the last one, but a recent conversation was before the match between the United States and England at the World Cup. Continue Reading →

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Peace Or War On Presidential Seal?

Is it true the eagle on the Presidential seal faces the olive branches in times of peace and the arrows in times of war? White House Oval Office Operations guy Brian Mosteller explains why there are two Presidential seals. Continue Reading →

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Obama: Verge Of Victory For Financial Reform

Transcript:
 
This weekend, I’m traveling to Toronto to meet with members of the G20. There, I hope we can build on the progress we made at last year’s G20 summits by coordinating our global financial reform efforts to make sure a crisis like the one from which we are still recovering never happens again. We’ve made great progress toward passing such reform here at home. As I speak, we are on the cusp of enacting the toughest financial reforms since the Great Depression.  
I don’t have to tell you why these reforms are so important. Continue Reading →

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Toughest Financial Reform Since Great Depression

Key quote from President Obama:I’m gratified we’ve made great progress towards enacting these safeguards here at home. ; Because of the incredibly hard work of Chairman Dodd and Chairman Frank, and the strong leadership of Chairwoman Lincoln and Chairman Peterson, and the great efforts of the conferees and members of both parties — who were up very late last night — we are poised to pass the toughest financial reform since the ones we created in the aftermath of the Great Depression. Continue Reading →

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