Archive - February 2014




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Monday Morning Quarterback – 2/24/2014

Posted by: Andrew Schmitt | Posted on: February 24th, 2014 | 0 Comments

Rouen Group's Monday Morning Quarterback

 The Rouen Group: Award Winning Grassroots and Issue Advocacy Campaigns Boom Goes The Dynamite: On Sunday morning crews exploded huge sections of the Metrodome as they near the end of the demolition effort.(watch) What State Do You Belong In? This Survey made the rounds on social media for the last couple weeks.  It is fun.  And I heard Idaho is nice. (Quiz) Political Prom? Are you going to be at the MN Chamber annual session priorities dinner Tuesday night?  Stop by and say hi and mention the MMQ and your beer is on me. The Campaign Trail Recent News and Notes from the Campaign Trail... MN Legislative Session Sets Stage for Fierce Campaign Battle: As legislators head to St. Paul this week for the start of the 2014 Legislative session they will be debating many key issues that will shape the 2014 race for Governor and control of the Minnesota House.  The Star Tribune takes a look at the issues and the potential political fall out (here).
GOP Loses Two of The Best: On Saturday two of the best legislators in the MN House GOP said they will not seek re-election in 2014.  Rep. Mary Liz Holberg told delegates she would not seek a ninth term.  Also, facing a nasty endorsement battle Rep. David Fitzsimmons withdrew his name for endorsement and said he will not run in a primary. (read)  Weekly Round-Up: Did you spend all weekend shoveling snow drifts?  Well here is a quick way to catch up on all of the national political news from the last several days. (watch) Worth A Read A few of my favorite articles, commentaries and posts... Where Have All The Lobbyists Gone? The Nation has an interesting look at the future of lobbying as the number of lobbyist has declined for the past 3 years in a row. (read) A Couch Potato Nation: Want to know what is wrong with our health care system in the US, just read this from the LA Times: "Obese women averaged about 11 seconds a day at vigorous exercise, while men and women of normal weight exercised vigorously (on the level of a jog or brisk uphill hike) for less than two minutes a day, according to the study published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings." (read) By The Numbers: A look at polls, attitudes and other interesting numbers: 1183 Number of crashes the MN State Patrol responded to since Thursday's storm. 2568 Number of spin outs the MN State Patrol responded to since Thursday's storm. 75 Number of jack knifed semi trucks the MN State Patrol responded to since Thursday's storm. 49% Number of Minnesotans in the latest poll that support allowing liquors stores to be open on Sundays. 4th The United States finished with 28 medals, good for 4th in the Olympic Medal count.  Russia finished first with 13 golds and 33 total medals. 16103.30 The Dow Jones Industrial Average to start the week.  Down 50 points from last week. GROW: Please share The MMQ via email, Facebook and Twitter

Monday Morning Quarterback – 2/17/2014

Posted by: Andrew Schmitt | Posted on: February 20th, 2014 | 0 Comments

Rouen Group's Monday Morning Quarterback

 The Rouen Group: Award Winning Grassroots and Issue Advocacy Campaigns President's Day: One thing about writing on Monday's is that it often falls on a Holiday.  That gives me a chance to look at the reason and history behind the holiday.  Did you know: originally established in 1885 in recognition of President George Washington, it is still officially called “Washington’s Birthday” by the federal government. Traditionally celebrated on February 22—Washington’s actual day of birth—the holiday became popularly known as Presidents’ Day after it was moved as part of 1971’s Uniform Monday Holiday Act, an attempt to create more three-day weekends for the nation’s workers." Read more about President's Day (here) Oshie in Sochi: This is a great story on PJ Oshie, the Warroad, MN native that became a national sensation after scoring 4 times in the shoot out, in the dramatic win for Team USA over Russia in Ice Hockey. (read) Snow Day for Parents: I thought this would be a great thing to share on a snowy Monday.  This is a hilarious video of a snow day from a parents point of view. (watch) Can We Help? The Rouen Group provides award winning public relations campaigns for clients of all sizes.  With monthly communications packages starting as low as $250 we have a program that will help you grow your organization.  If you are looking for help with your social media, press releases or communications strategy please consider The Rouen Group. (contact) The Campaign Trail Recent News and Notes from the Campaign Trail... Last Call for State Parties?: The future role of state parties has been often discussed in Minnesota political circles.  With a GOP party still struggling to get out of debt and a Democrat party that has figured out the future is in working with third party groups with more flexibility and less disclosure, we are a case study for the evolution of the state party's role in elections.  That is probably why Politico turned to Ken Martin, Chair of the MN DFL for this quote: "“If you’re a donor and you can write a million dollar check to an outside group with little or no disclosure and focus it on very specific activity and have no regularity urgency or burdens in terms of disclosure hanging over your head, why wouldn’t you go that way and give a contribution?” said Ken Martin."  State parties are hamstrung by federal rules that affect the use of volunteers, direct mail, phone banking in federal elections. Also, donation limits to candidates and national political parties are currently indexed to inflation and increase year-to-year. But donations to state parties are not — and have been stuck at $10,000 per cycle since 2002." (more)
Dayton Enjoys High Marks: Governor Dayton enjoys his highest approval rating in the latest Star Tribune poll with 58% of respondents saying he is doing a good job.  But, as the article points out "Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty scored a 58 percent approval rating in July 2006, but barely survived a three-way election that November, with a victory margin of 1 percent over his Democratic opponent..."  There is a a long way to go until 2014, but Dayton is feeling good today. (read)  Dayton is Far From A Lock: The Star Tribune editor DJ Tice has a very insightful look at Governor Mark Dayton's first term and how many of the issues could impact his run for re-election. (read) Franken Approval High, But... The Star Tribune released it's latest poll of Sen. Al Franken showing him with a 55% job approval rating.  While this is good news for Democrats, the poll also shows record low approvals for President Obama, meaning if Republicans can do a good job of linking Franken to President Obama they could increases their chances of beating the first term Senator. (read) Weekly Round-Up: Did you spend all weekend watching House of Cards and/or the Olympics, well here is a quick way to catch up on all of the national political news from the last several days. (watch) Worth A Read A few of my favorite articles, commentaries and posts... Why Mom Time is Different: This is a really interesting article from the Wall Street Journal about the difference in the time moms and dads spend with their children.  It provides good perspective and maybe we dads can appreciate our wives even more than we already do: " consider night duty. Sustained sleep deprivation, as we know, consigns people to their own special league of misery. But it's generally mothers, rather than fathers, who are halfway down the loonytown freeway to hysterical exhaustion, at least in the early years of parenting. According to the American Time Use Survey, women in dual-earner couples are three times more likely to report interrupted sleep if they have a child under the age of 1, and stay-at-home mothers are six times as likely to get up with their children as are stay-at-home fathers..." (more) 10 Things Successful People do to Stay Calm: We all have periods of high stress levels,  but how you deal with it can make all the difference.  This article from Forbes has some tips we can all use. (read) By The Numbers: A look at polls, attitudes and other interesting numbers: 0 The amount of defense played in the NBA All-Star Game. $0.0284706 The worth of 1 Russian Ruble. 4 The number of gold medals for the USA so far.  They have a total of 16 medals. 6 The number of shots T.J. Oshie took in the shootout.  He scored on 4 of them. 16154.39 The Dow Jones Industrial Average to start the week.  A gain of nearly 400 points. GROW: Please share The MMQ via email, Facebook and Twitter

Monday Morning Quarterback – 2/10/2014

Posted by: Andrew Schmitt | Posted on: February 14th, 2014 | 0 Comments

 Rouen Group’s Monday Morning Quarterback

The Rouen Group: Award Winning Grassroots and Issue Advocacy Campaigns Thanks NBC/Comcast: The folks at Comcast threw a great party Friday night for the Olympic Opening Ceremonies.  The Rouen boys had a great time.  We even got a really fun picture (here) Where You Live Tells You How Long You Will Live: This is a really cool interactive map that shows the life expectancy of people in neighborhoods in the Twin Cities.  If you live in the cities you should check this out.(map) Can We Help? The Rouen Group provides award winning public relations campaigns for clients of all sizes.  With monthly communications packages starting as low as $250 we have a program that will help you grow your organization.  If you are looking for help with your social media, press releases or communications strategy please consider The Rouen Group. (contact) The Campaign Trail Recent News and Notes from the Campaign Trail... Dayton Picks Tina Smith as Running Mate-May Need to Mend Fences: Governor Dayton picked his former Chief of Staff Tina Flint Smith to be his running mate for the 2014 election.  While many DFL insiders have praised the pick, other others feel this is a slight to outstate Minnesota, particularly the Iron Range.  The influencial Mesabi Daily News wrote of the pick last week: "Say hello to an all-Minneapolis DFL gubernatorial ticket. Say goodbye to a DFL gubernatorial ticket with some rural Minnesota balance and input. Gov. Mark Dayton politically owes a lot to DFLers and independents in northeastern Minnesota, especially the Iron Range. The area delivered him 2010 election victories. But the area has now been shunned by Dayton when it comes to his running mate for the 2014 election. (read) Caucus Reaction: Here is a copy of a piece I wrote for the TwinWest Chamber "Political Insider" newsletter: "The most interesting thing that happened from Tuesday's caucus is what didn't happen, which was turnout.  2010 was the last time there was a contested race for Governor and nearly 20,000 Republicans turned out for caucuses.  This year in a contested race with 6 candidates, just over 10,000 people showed up. Marty Siefert's victory in a non-binding straw poll was a bit of surprise, but his support in rural counties helped him out pace the other metro based candidates.  And for all of those that put a lot of stock in a straw poll, I say ask President Ron Paul or President Michelle Bachmann. (read)  GOP Candidates Fight For Chance to Beat Dayton: The Star Tribune has a good profile of the GOP contest to take on Mark Dayton.  (read) Sunday Show Round Up: Did you have Olympic fever and miss the Sunday Talk Shows?  Here is a way to see what you missed in just 90 seconds (watch) Worth A Read A few of my favorite articles, commentaries and posts... The Employee of the Month Has a Battery: As Minnesota and other states debate an increase in the minimum wage the Wall Street Journal has an interesting look at how this increase along with technology could radically change our dining experience: "Tablet-based ordering is coming into vogue at U.S. restaurants: Chefs polled by the National Restaurant Association recently ranked computerized menus as the top tech trend for 2014. Airports in locations like New York City and Minneapolis now feature "restaurants" that are waitstaff-free...But the flip-side of more efficiency is a 20%-25% drop in the number of waitstaff necessary to run a restaurant...With roughly three million current tipped jobs in the U.S., that could amount to as many as 750,000 fewer entry-level opportunities if implemented widely..(read). By The Numbers: A look at polls, attitudes and other interesting numbers: 19 The number of athletes MN is sending to the Olympics.  Only Colorado is sending more with 20. 41% President Obama's approval rating according to Gallup.  President Bush at the same time in his second term has an approval rating of 42%. 50% Of all snow mobiles sold are made in Minnesota. 93.5% Percentage of Lake Superior that is covered in ice. 15794.08 The Dow Jones Industrial Average to start the week.  A modest gain over the week. GROW: Please share The MMQ via email, Facebook and Twitter

Monday Morning Quarterback – 2/3/2014

Posted by: Andrew Schmitt | Posted on: February 4th, 2014 | 0 Comments

Rouen Group's Monday Morning Quarterback

 The Rouen Group: Award Winning Grassroots and Issue Advocacy Campaigns Best Superbowl Ads Ever: Do you think any of the ads this year can stack up to the all time classics?  Here is a pretty good list of the best Super Bowl ads of all time  (watch) Best Superbowl Ad this year. Did you have a favorite ad this year?  See how it stacked up.  Here is a list and links to the best ads from Super Bowl 48. (watch) Boom! Watch this cool video of the Metrodome roof getting taken down with explosives. (watch) The best wine trick: Ever wondered the best way to open a bottle of wine without a corkscrew?  This is truly amazing.  Hopefully none of you needed this last night for your Super Bowl party. (watch) The Campaign Trail Recent News and Notes from the Campaign Trail... MN Governor 2014 Finance Reports: As you may be aware each campaign for Governor had to release their first campaign finance reports last Friday, January 31st.  While the reports are a snapshot in time they do give some insight into what campaigns are raising and spending.  Here is my quick summary:  Not surprisingly Governor Dayton raised the most money with just over $1 million. Dayton has spent over $350,000 leaving him with $700,000 cash on hand.  Compare Dayton's numbers to incumbent Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin.  His campaign just announced that he had raised over $5.1 Million for his re-election effort.  On the GOP side, Kurt Zellers and Jeff Johnson are the candidates with no debt and over $100,000 cash on hand.  Johnson, who is "all-in" for the party endorsement, will likely spend a significant portion of his remaining cash on Tuesday's Caucus turnout. Scott Honour raised an impressive $500,000 but spent nearly $600,000.   To see all of the campaign finance reports you click (here) Primaries v Caucus: Tuesday night is caucus night in Minnesota.  The caucuses allow the grassroots of the party to help decide delegates to the state convention.  Those delegates will ultimately decide the political party endorsement. With likely primaries in the GOP race for Governor and for US Senate, the question is how will that impact turnout.  The Star Tribune's Lori Sturdevant looks at the growing debate between the caucus system and a more traditional primary system: "But “either/or” thinking about endorsements and primaries has given way to “both/and” and sometimes “just the primary, thanks” in DFL circles. That party saw in 1982, 1990, 2000 and 2010 that primaries can be interest-builders in races for governor or U.S. senator, with positive results. They’ve learned to live with and even love the primary winners who bump off their endorsees. (They’ve had considerable practice.)  Downey is touting the same change of mind in the GOP, which has not seen a vigorous primary contest for a top state office in 20 years..." (read)  Sunday Show Round Up: Were you too busy prepping for your Super Bowl party to watch the Sunday news shows?  Here is a way to see what you missed in just 90 seconds (watch) Worth A Read A few of my favorite articles, commentaries and posts... 10 Things you Didn't Know about Super Bowl Halftime Shows: Curious how much Bruno Mars got paid for the halftime show?  Or how it even got started?  Which was the most watched halftime show? This is an interesting read from metal floss.  (read) The Doctor Who is Sick of Washington: This Wall Street Journal piece on Sen. Tom Coburn is a must read: ""I don't think Washington can fix Washington," Dr. Coburn explains. "You're always going to have this built-in conflict of getting re-elected. Parochial interests will trump the best interests of the nation, and the actors will do what's expedient to be popular. It doesn't have to be that way. There's hundreds of thousands if not millions of people who could do these jobs well. All it requires is common sense and courage."(more) "Governor Obamacare"-Ben Golnik makes the NYT: MN Political operative Ben Golnik received some impressive national press for his MN Jobs Coalition over the weekend. His group was featured in a New York Times article about the continued failures of MNSure.(read) By The Numbers: A look at polls, attitudes and other interesting numbers: 31 31 days in December and January that Minnesota temps are at or below zero. Longest stretch since 1982. $10,400,000 The amount Floyd Mayweather bet on the Bronco's to win.  Ouch! (pic) 6 The ground hog saw his shadow this year so we get 6 more weeks of winter. 45 If you thought this game was a blow out it was not even the Broncos largest defeat.  They lost to the 49ers in 19  55-10 in Super Bowl XXIV. 15698.85 The Dow Jones Industrial Average to start the week.  Down nearly 200 points since last Monday. GROW: Please share The MMQ via email, Facebook and Twitter
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