Mark Dayton was inaugurated today as Minnesota’s first Democratic governor in 20 years. In the interest of full disclosure, my ties with the Dayton family go back to the 1980s when I was a Dayton Merit Scholar at United Theological Seminary in the Twin Cities. The scholarship paid for my tuition and books.
Today Mark and I are Facebook friends, and you can bet I voted for him last November.
The Minneapolis Star Tribune covered Dayton’s inauguration:
Moments after Mark Dayton was sworn in as governor, he began bracing Minnesotans and political rivals for difficult times ahead.
The state's first Democratic governor in more than 20 years signaled his willingness to work with Republicans who will control the Legislature, but said he was prepared to spend his new political capital to make tough but unpopular decisions.
Dayton steps into office after years of a depressed economy and a series of accounting gimmicks that leave the state facing a staggering $6.2 billion deficit. Dayton and Republican legislative leaders must balance the books without hobbling the state's sputtering economy, but also without angering recession-wracked taxpayers stinging from higher property taxes, soaring college tuition and cuts to cherished government services.