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Thursday
Jul 31st

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Image not part of Tut exhibit: Science Museum

I'm writing in response to "An Open Letter to the Science Museum of Minnesota," published on July 27 and written by Rev. Les Lester from the St. Paul NAACP. 

The Science Museum is proud to host Tutankhamun: The Golden King and The Great Pharaohs. This is the exhibition's first and only stop in Minnesota. It has reached across North America and features stunning objects from King Tut’s tomb, as well as from the tombs of some of the most important rulers throughout 2,000 years of ancient Egyptian history.
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South Africans in joyous spirit, mark Mandela's 93rd year

South Africans in joyous spirit, mark Mandela's 93rd year(GIN) - The birthday of national hero Nelson Mandela was marked with tree planting, children’s choruses of Happy Birthday Madiba, and “67 minutes” of good deeds suggested by The Nelson Mandela Foundation. “Read to someone who cannot see, help the elderly with grocery shopping, get tested for HIV with your partner, help a neighbor in need,” the Foundation suggested.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged people around the world "to make a difference" by tutoring a child, feeding the hungry or volunteering at a hospital or community center.
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Address by President Barack Obama to the Nation

July25, 2011 - 9:01 P.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Good evening.  Tonight, I want to talk about the debate we’ve been having in Washington over the national debt -- a debate that directly affects the lives of all Americans.

For the last decade, we’ve spent more money than we take in.  In the year 2000, the government had a budget surplus.  But instead of using it to pay off our debt, the money was spent on trillions of dollars in new tax cuts, while two wars and an expensive prescription drug program were simply added to our nation’s credit card.
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Statement by the Press Secretary on balancing the budget

The President has been advocating a balanced plan that would reduce our deficit by $4 trillion by making large cuts in domestic and Pentagon spending, reforming entitlement programs, and closing tax loopholes for corporations, millionaires and billionaires.  This sort of approach won support from Democrats and Republicans in the Senate, but the House Republicans walked away after insisting that the budget be balanced on the backs of seniors and the middle class.
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State Rep. Jeff Hayden announces run for State Senate

State Representative Jeff Hayden (DFL – Minneapolis) announced he will run for the State Senate in District 61, after it was reported that State Sen. Linda Berglin would resign her office to pursue a new opportunity with Hennepin County.

“I congratulate Senator Berglin on her unparalleled career in the Minnesota Senate where she fought for progressive values and led the charge for better health care in Minnesota,” said Hayden. “I wish her the best of luck and thank her for her hard work and leadership.”
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Facing Race Idea Challenge produces winning ideas for reducing racism

Facing Race Idea Challenge produces winning ideas for reducing racismSome 49 Minnesotans submitted fresh ideas to reduce racism in their communities for the 2011 Facing Race Idea Challenge. A panel of judges comprising community volunteers, short-listed five finalists whose ideas were then put to public vote at the Facing Race Idea Challenge website, hosted in partnership with InCommons.

"We were very pleased with the quality and creativity of the ideas submitted to the Facing Race Idea Challenge," says Carleen Rhodes, president and CEO of The Saint Paul Foundation. "Congratulations to our winning grant recipients and to all who participated in this important effort to reduce racism in Minnesota."
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UCLA student sheds light on shadow population

UCLA student sheds light on shadow populationPart two in a six-part series profiling the winners of the Freedom From Fear Awards.

The night before he announced he was undocumented on the steps of Los Angeles City Hall, Freedom from Fear Award winner David Cho wrote a farewell letter to his friends and family in case he was deported once it became known that he didn't have the papers to live legally in the United States. "I didn't know what would happen to me," said the 21-year-old.
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The future of Minnesota is at stake in budget debate

The future of Minnesota is at stake in budget debateThis state government shutdown is painful for many Minnesotans.  I am often asked, “Why?  Why are you and Republican legislators putting us through these hardships?”

I believe that the future of Minnesota is at stake.  Our way of life, what makes Minnesota special and successful, hangs in the balance.

Will we continue to have one of the best higher education systems in the world?  Not with the 19% funding cut to the University of Minnesota and the 14% reduction to MnSCU campuses that the Republicans proposed.  A mediocre educational system will lead to a mediocre state economy in the years ahead.
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MN Government Shutdown and You

As you have probably heard, Minnesota’s government has shut down. This means that many services we regularly use are no longer open.

To learn more about the reason for the shutdown, what services are affected, and additional resources available watch ECHO Minnesota’s program, “MN Government Shutdown and You.”

In this program, community members, experts, and ECHO hosts come together to bring important information to communities about the Minnesota government shutdown.
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Congresswoman McCollum confronts Republicans on EPA Budget Cuts, environmentally destructive policies

Washington, DC – Recently, Congresswoman Betty McCollum (MN-04) participated in the markup of the Fiscal Year 2012 Interior and Environment Appropriations bill that sets funding levels for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Department of Interior and other agencies within the subcommittee’s jurisdiction.  The proposed spending bill led by the House Republican majority includes drastic cuts that will threaten the safety of America’s drinking water and let corporate polluters go free.
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Congressman Keith Ellison calls on Congress to protect Social Security

WASHINGTON—Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), on Friday, July 8 introduced a resolution urging the House of Representatives to reiterate protections for Social Security and Social Security benefits. 

Discussions have been swirling that that the Social Security program might be cut as part of negotiations to prevent the United States from defaulting on its debt.  Rep. Ellison’s resolution notes that the Social Security trust fund actually has $2.7 trillion in assets on hand, and that any reform to improve Social Security’s long-term outlook should not decrease benefits or raise the retirement age.
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