Welcome to the MPR News Update, Minnesota's news on your schedule. Today we're reporting about advocates for same-sex marriage gearing up for a fight in the Legislature. We also ask whether Minnesotans care about the fiscal cliff. And, why we be worried about "superbugs."
MARRIAGEMOVES: Same-sex marriage supporters in Minnesota gathered on Saturday to talk about the best ways to translate their defeat of the marriage amendment into ways of advancing their other goals, including making same-sex marriage legal. But there was disagreement on when and how best to proceed.
FISCAL CLIFF: If Congress and President Obama don't reach a deal to resolve the fiscal cliff before the end of the year, a series of tax hikes and federal spending cuts will kick in on Jan. 1, and the fragile economy could tumble back into recession. The cycle of retrenchment that fueled the last recession would then repeat itself, but Minnesotans we spoke to aren't paying much attention to the fiscal cliff.
COLD SPRING KILLING: What 8-year-old Kelly Decker remembers about her dad, more than playing Nintendo Wii together, more than the treehouse he was building for Kelly and his other three children, was how he loved to look out for people. Kelly's dad is Cold Spring-Richmond Police Officer Tom Decker, 31, who was killed late Thursday in what police say was an ambush. His funeral is Wednesday.
THRILL OF THE (GOODWILL) HUNT: "Red Nose" just meant a reindeer named Rudolph to Karen Mallet of Milwaukee, until she bought a print by that name for $12.34 at a Goodwill store. It turned out to be a lithograph by American artist Alexander Calder worth $9,000. "That's kind of part of shopping at Goodwill, the thrill of the hunt," said a Goodwill spokeswoman in. "You never know what you're going to find."
CHARLIE PARR: His music "sounds older than dirt," one music writer said of Charlie Parr. And with his long, stringy hair, small glasses and flannel-and-boots wardrobe, he appears to have packed on the miles, too. So we couldn't wait to get him on the air again to talk about folk music, his newest recording, and his memories of growing up in Duluth.
THREE CUPS OF TEA: Journalist David Oliver Relin was born in Rochester. In his career he was drawn to telling stories about worldwide inequities involving children, and he was assigned to write a book about fellow Rochester native Greg Mortenson, a mountain climber who had an inspiring story about building schools in Afghanistan. "Three Cups of Tea" was the result. Millions of copies were sold. Then it became clear parts of the Mortenson story were not true. Today we got word that Relin had committed suicide.
YOUTH AT WORK: Minnesota teenagers and young adults have stronger employment numbers than most of their peers across the country, according to a new report by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, which tracks youth and work. The "Kids Count" report found that 42 percent of Minnesota residents ages 16 to 19 work, while the national average is 26 percent.
ECONOMIC OUTLOOK: Minnesota gets an update on its financial health this week when state officials release a new economic forecast. The numbers will help Gov. Mark Dayton put the finishing touches on a two-year budget proposal that he'll unveil in mid-January.
SUPERBUGS: Health officials in Minnesota say they're stepping up their efforts to battle new antibiotic-resistant superbugs. The latest strain of concern are called CRE, a bacteria resistant to a class of antibiotics known as carbapenem. Minnesota has identified 44 cases of infections by the CRE superbug.
RESTORING BENEFITS: U.S. Rep. Tim Walz, D-Minn., said he will push for the lame-duck Congress to pass legislation restoring benefits to military veterans who were discharged because of personality disorders. The bill directs the military to review the cases of more than 30,000 service members who have been discharged since 2001 because of personality disorders. He said that or traumatic brain injury.