breaking news

Springfield man accused of whipping pregnant woman with belt

Minnesota Lt. Gov. Smith to join Senate, dive into campaign


Minnesota Lt. Gov. Tina Smith is vowing to "hit the ground running" as she joins the U.S. Senate this week while preparing to run in November.

Gov. Mark Dayton appointed Smith, his second-in-command, to replace Democratic Sen. Al Franken, who announced his resignation after a string of sexual misconduct allegations. The resignation takes effect Tuesday; Smith will be sworn in by former Vice President Walter Mondale on Wednesday.

Smith told the Star Tribune that she has "fundamental differences in values and approaches" with President Donald Trump and some of her new Republican colleagues.

"But I am looking forward to working with my colleagues across the aisle on places where we could accomplish something," Smith said. She cited infrastructure improvements as an area where the parties could find common ground.

Smith plans to run for the remaining two years of Franken's term in a special election in November, just 10 months away.

"I have a job to do to hit the ground running and be the most effective senator I can be," Smith told the newspaper, "and also to go to Minnesotans and ask for their support as I run for Senate in 2018."

Smith said she doesn't yet know whether she will take over Franken's committee assignments. But most of Franken's staff about 50 employees is staying on in Washington and Minnesota.

An early priority for Smith will be making sure all Minnesota businesses have needed internet access, no matter their location.

"If I am a small business person from Eden Prairie, Minnesota, I have access to high-speed internet," Smith said. "But if I'm trying to create and grow a business out of my grandparents' farmhouse outside Fergus Falls, I can't do that. ... That's another example of an issue where there's a lot we can accomplish at the federal level."

Smith has signed a lease for an apartment a mile from Capitol Hill. She plans a subdued celebration with family and close friends on the day of her swearing-in. She also plans a series of community events in Minnesota soon after taking office.

Dayton, a one-term senator from 2001 to 2007, praised Smith at a recent news conference for her ability to work well with people across the political spectrum.

But he added: "No single member is going to be able to reverse the trends that have made it more divisive and more gridlocked and less responsive to the real needs of the country."

___

Information from: Star Tribune, http://www.startribune.com


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Politics

Worker who sent mistaken missile message reassigned
Worker who sent mistaken missile message reassigned

The person who hit the button that sent an emergency alert warning people living in or visiting Hawaii that a ballistic missile was heading to the island state has been reassigned. USAToday reported that the person responsible for the mistaken alert has been reassigned. That individual, who has not been named, has worked for the agency for a decade...
Jordan: Clinton, not Trump, sought Russia help to influence election
Jordan: Clinton, not Trump, sought Russia help to influence election

Rep. Jim Jordan has emerged as a top defender of President Donald Trump as the Justice Department’s Russia investigation continues, leading some to wonder if the GOP insurgent known for causing heartburn to the party establishment has become a surrogate for the president. For Jordan, it’s very straightforward: He says it was the Hillary...
More public officials dinged for ethics violations
More public officials dinged for ethics violations

The Greene County developmental disabilities superintendent, a Harveysburg village council member and two state government administrators were among 26 public officials the Ohio Ethics Commission entered into settlement agreements with last year to resolve alleged ethics violations. This is an increase from 2016, when the state agency reprimanded 14...
U.S. Senate candidates Renacci and Brown spar over Trump’s comment about immigrants
U.S. Senate candidates Renacci and Brown spar over Trump’s comment about immigrants

President Donald Trump’s reported use of the word “shithole” to describe Haiti, El Salvador and African countries is not a term that Republican Senate candidate U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci said he would have used. But, said Renacci, Trump “many times says what people are thinking.” In an interview with the Dayton Daily News...
Springfield, Clark County commissioners to hold joint work sessions
Springfield, Clark County commissioners to hold joint work sessions

The city of Springfield and Clark County commissions will hold joint work sessions later this year to improve communications between the two government entities, local leaders said. MORE: 3 new Springfield commissioners, fire chief sworn into office The meetings have yet to be scheduled but Springfield city commissioners approved holding at least two...
More Stories