|40th Governor of Minnesota|
January 3, 2011
|Lieutenant||Yvonne Prettner Solon|
|Preceded by||Tim Pawlenty|
|United States Senator
January 3, 2001 – January 3, 2007
|Preceded by||Rod Grams|
|Succeeded by||Amy Klobuchar|
|15th Auditor of Minnesota|
January 7, 1991 – January 3, 1995
|Preceded by||Arne Carlson|
|Succeeded by||Judi Dutcher|
|Born||Mark Brandt Dayton
January 26, 1947
|Spouse(s)||Alida Rockefeller Messinger
(1978 - 1986)
Janice Haarstick Fier
|Relations||George Dayton (great grandfather)|
|Alma mater||Yale University|
Mark Brandt Dayton (born January 26, 1947) is an American politician and the current and 40th Governor of Minnesota, serving since 2011. He was previously a United States Senator for Minnesota from 2001 to 2007, and the Minnesota State Auditor from 1991 to 1995. He is a member of the Minnesota Democratic–Farmer–Labor Party (DFL), which affiliates with the national Democratic Party.
A native of Minnesota, Dayton is the great-grandson of businessman George Dayton, the founder of Dayton's, a department store that later became the Target Corporation. He embarked on a career in teaching and social work in New York City and Boston after graduating from Yale University in 1969. During the 1970s, he served as a legislative aide to U.S. Senator Walter Mondale and Minnesota Governor Rudy Perpich. In 1978, Dayton was appointed the Minnesota Economic Development Commissioner and married Alida Rockefeller Messinger, a member of the Rockefeller family.
Dayton gained national attention in 1982 during his unsuccessful U.S. Senate campaign against Republican Party incumbent David Durenberger. He defeated former U.S. Senator Eugene McCarthy in the Democratic primary, and the general election became the one of the most expensive in state history. Dayton campaigned as a populist in opposition to Reaganomics and famously promised "to close tax loopholes for the rich and the corporations—and if you think that includes the Daytons, you're right." After his defeat, Dayton returned to the Perpich administration until his election as Minnesota State Auditor in 1990.
In 1998, Dayton ran an unsuccessful campaign for Governor, losing the Democratic nomination to Hubert Humphrey III. In 2000, he was elected to the U.S. Senate after defeating Republican incumbent Rod Grams. As Senator, Dayton voted against the authorization for war in Iraq, and became the first Senator to introduce legislation creating a cabinet-level United States Department of Peace. In 2006, he chose not to seek reelection, citing his disillusionment with Washington D.C. and fundraising.
In 2010, Dayton defeated Republican Tom Emmer to become Governor of Minnesota despite national success for the Republican Party, including in the Minnesota legislature. His major legislative initiatives as Governor include the construction of Vikings Stadium for the Minnesota Vikings of the National Football League (NFL) in Minneapolis, and the legalization of same-sex marriage.
- 1 Background and education
- 2 Early political career
- 3 Minnesota State Auditor
- 4 U.S. Senate
- 5 Governor of Minnesota
- 6 Political positions
- 7 Personal life
- 8 Electoral history
- 9 Footnotes
- 10 See also
- 11 Further reading
- 12 External links
Background and education
Mark Brandt Dayton was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He is the eldest of four children of Bruce Bliss Dayton and Gwendolen May Brandt. Through his father, he is a great-grandson of businessman George Dayton, the founder of the Dayton's department store chain, which later became the Target Corporation. Dayton grew up in Long Lake, Minnesota and graduated from the The Blake School in Minneapolis, where he was an All-State ice-hockey goaltender as a senior.
Dayton attended Yale University, where he played varsity hockey until an accident on the ice slit his throat. During his tenure at Yale, he joined the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity, alongside President George W. Bush, and received his B.A. in psychology, cum laude, in 1969. After college, Dayton worked as teacher in the Lower East Side of New York City from 1969 to 1971, and then as the chief financial officer of a social service agency in Boston, Massachusetts from 1971 to 1975.
Early political career
Dayton first became politically active in the 1960s. He protested the Vietnam War in April 1970 at one of Minnesota's major antiwar protests against Honeywell, where he was maced by police. Dayton's father served on the Honeywell board of directors and the two had a strained relationship after the incident.
From 1975 to 1976 he was a legislative aide to Senator Walter Mondale, prior to Mondale's election to Vice President of the United States. From 1977 to 1978, Dayton served as an aide to Minnesota Governor Rudy Perpich.
In 1978, he was appointed by Rudy Perpich to head the Department of Economic Development and then the Department of Energy and Economic Development.
Minnesota State Auditor
Dayton first ran for the United States Senate in 1982, but lost to Republican incumbent David Durenberger. He was elected to the Senate in 2000, defeating Republican incumbent Rod Grams. Dayton self-financed his 2000 campaign with $12 million.
On February 9, 2005, he announced that he would not run for reelection, stating, "Everything I've worked for, and everything I believe in, depends upon this Senate seat remaining in the Democratic caucus in 2007. I do not believe that I am the best candidate to lead the DFL Party to victory next year." He also cited his dislike of fundraising and political campaigns. Dayton was succeeded in the Senate by Amy Klobuchar, another DFLer.
On September 22, 2005, the 44th anniversary of the day President John F. Kennedy signed the Peace Corps into law, Dayton became the first U.S. Senator to introduce legislation creating a cabinet-level Department of Peace. At the same time, similar legislation was introduced in the House by Congressman Dennis Kucinich.
In April 2006, Dayton was rated one of America's "Five Worst Senators" by Time magazine, which also labeled him "The Blunderer" for such "erratic behavior" as his temporary closure of his office in 2004 because of an unspecified terrorist threat, his complaints about "limited power in a chamber where authority derives from seniority," and his comments in February 2005 that the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota was "worth a hell of a lot more than the whole state of South Dakota", a remark he later apologized for. News reports of a Dayton question-and-answer session quote the Senator giving himself a "F" grade for his time in the Senate. Largely based on his Washington behavior, The New Republic dubbed Dayton's subsequent run for state-level elected office "Eeyore For Governor."
- Committee on Armed Services
- Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry
- Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs
- Committee on Rules and Administration
- Joint Committee on Printing
Dayton v. Hanson
In the 2003 lawsuit Office of Senator Mark Dayton v. Brad Hanson questioned the possibility of the wrongful termination of Brad Hanson. Brad Hanson worked as State Office Manager for Dayton; and when Hanson took medical leave for a heart problem and Senator Dayton fired him shortly thereafter. Hanson sued under the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995, claiming that Dayton had discriminated against him because of a perceived disability, though Dayton argued that he was immunized from the suit by the "Speech or Debate Clause" of the United States Constitution. Dayton claimed that Hanson's duties were directly related to Dayton's legislative functions, and that the decision to fire him could thus not be challenged. The District Court denied the motion, and the case went all the way to the Supreme Court of the United States, where oral arguments were heard on April 24, 2007. At issue in the case was whether a U.S. Senator can be sued for wrongful termination or if such legal actions are barred by the Constitution's "speech or debate" clause, which protects lawmakers from having legislative work questioned by courts. The Supreme Court ruled 8-0 that it lacked jurisdiction to hear the appeal and dismissed the case, declining to grant certiorari. Dayton reached a settlement with Hanson in 2009, shortly after Dayton became a candidate for Governor.
Governor of Minnesota
On January 16, 2009, Dayton announced his candidacy for Governor of Minnesota. In a crowded Democratic field of challengers, Dayton chose to bypass the state caucuses and convention in favor of the primary election. He stated he made that decision because the primary election is a more democratic method of choosing a candidate. Possibly due to his known dislike of fundraising for campaigns, he relied on personal funds for his campaign. On May 24, 2010, he announced State Senator Yvonne Prettner Solon of Duluth as his running mate for Lieutenant Governor. On August 10, 2010, Dayton defeated the DFL-endorsed Margaret Anderson Kelliher in a close primary election, 41.33% to 39.75%;) Dayton was later endorsed by the Minnesota DFL to earn his party's nomination for governor.
In the general election on November 2, 2010, Dayton led his Republican opponent, Tom Emmer, at the close of balloting by just under 9,000 votes. The margin of victory was small enough to trigger an automatic recount under state law. Analysts generally thought it unlikely that Dayton's lead would be overturned. During the hand recount of ballots, Emmer failed to find enough questionable ballots to overturn Dayton's lead. Emmer conceded the election on December 8, 2010. Minnesota Independence Party candidate Tom Horner received 11.9% of the vote, and it has been suggested that Horner cost Emmer the election by splitting the vote.
Dayton took the oath of office to become Governor of Minnesota on January 3, 2011; former Vice President and Senator Walter Mondale served as Master of Ceremony at the inauguration. The first Democrat to serve as Governor in 20 years, Dayton succeeded Republican Governor Tim Pawlenty. On January 5, Governor Dayton signed two Executive Orders allowing the Minnesota Departments of Commerce and Health to apply for federal health-care grants, and provide $1.2 billion in federal funds toward an Early Option for a statewide Medicaid Opt-In program; these Executive Orders reversed the previous administration's ban on federal funding for the state's health-care system. In March 2011, Dayton signed a law increasing penalties on those who injure or kill police dogs.
On July 1, 2011, the Minnesota government went into a shutdown as a result of an impasse during budget negotiations between Dayton and the Republican led legislature. On July 21, 2011, Dayton and the legislature reached an agreement, ending the 20-day shutdown.
Dayton led an effort to have a new stadium constructed for the Minnesota Vikings. In May 2011, after efforts to have the stadium financed by Hennepin County failed, Ramsey County officials announced they had reached an agreement with the Minnesota Vikings to be the team’s local partner for a new stadium, subject to approval by the Minnesota Legislature and to approval of a sales tax by the Ramsey County Board. Dayton was reluctant to go along with the team's Arden Hills proposal because it would cost a total $1.1 billion, including an additional $131 million for road improvements, and later tried to make a push to have the stadium built on the site of the Linden Hills farmers market in downtown Minneapolis. On March 1, 2012, plans to build the stadium in either Arden Hills or the Linden Hills farmers market were abandoned after an agreement was announced by Dayton for a new stadium to be built on the site of the Metrodome, pending approval by the state legislature and the Minneapolis city council. In May 2012, the proposal to build the stadium on the Metrodome site was passed by the Minnesota Legislature and soon afterwards signed into law by Dayton; On May 25, the proposal was officially finalized after receiving the approval of the Minneapolis City Council.
In the legislative session that ended in May 2013, Dayton pushed for, and won, a $2.1 billion tax increase, mostly on the wealthy and cigarettes. He also signed a bill legalizing gay marriage in Minnesota, created free, statewide, all-day kindergarten and financed expansions of the Mayo Clinic, 3M and Mall of America.
Dayton received 100% ratings from the AFL-CIO, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League, and the liberal group Americans for Democratic Action. Dayton received a 79% rating from the League of Conservation Voters for his support of green energy. Dayton scored a 9% rating from the conservative SBE Council.
Dayton supports "ObamaCare" coverage for all Americans, with increased state and federal spending on health care. Dayton supports a progressive tax to decrease state and federal deficits. To help create jobs, he proposed a state stimulus package as part of his gubernatorial platform. Dayton supports increased funding for K-12 schools, with increased teachers' salaries and decreased class size.
In July 2000, Dayton answered an election questionnaire saying he would expand Medicare prescription-drug coverage. He favors keeping Social Security intact, and opposes privatization of Social Security. He received a 90% rating by the Alliance for Retired Americans.
With Senator Joe Lieberman and Representative Barney Frank, Dayton introduced legislation to the Governmental Affairs Committee to extend domestic partners of federal employees all benefits available and obligations imposed upon a spouse of an employee.
On May 14, 2013, Governor Dayton signed into law a bill passed by the Minnesota House and Senate to legalize same-sex marriage in the state.
In October 2002, Dayton voted against the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq. He followed up three years later by introducing Senate Bill 1756 to create a cabinet-level Department of Peace a week after Dennis Kucinich introduced a similar bill in the House. The bill never emerged from the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs.
Dayton married Alida Ferry Rockefeller, youngest sister of U.S. Senator John Davison "Jay" Rockefeller IV, in 1978; they divorced in 1986. Dayton and his second wife, Janice Haarstick, divorced in 1999. Dayton has two sons, Eric and Andrew, from his first marriage. Despite his wealth, he lives modestly.
Dayton is a recovering alcoholic and has been treated for mild depression. He revealed this information on his own initiative, saying he felt "people have the right to know." In December 2012, Dayton underwent vertebral fusion surgery at Mayo Clinic to treat his spinal stenosis. On June 25, 2013, Dayton had to cancel an appearance due to a muscle tear.
- Yoon, Robert; Simon, Jeff (December 4, 2010). "Democrat Dayton wins Minnesota Gov. recount". CNN. Retrieved April 2, 2012.
- "Mark Dayton's career". Star Tribune. 2009-12-27. Retrieved 2010-07-20.
- "MPR: Dayton won't seek re-election as Minnesota U.S. senator". News.minnesota.publicradio.org. 2005-02-09. Retrieved 2010-07-20.
- "Mark Brandt Dayton". Freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com. 1947-01-26. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- Johnson, Dirk (1998-09-16). "Political Scion, Hubert Humphrey 3d, Wins Nomination for Governor of Minnesota". The New York Times.
- "Dayton, Entenza finance campaigns with millions of their personal wealth". Minnesota Independent. Retrieved 2010-08-24.
- "Congressional Votes Database: Votes by Mark Dayton". The Washington Post. 2000-06-13. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "Mark Dayton Senatorial Files. Minnesota Historical Society". Mnhs.org. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "Mark Dayton: The Blunderer". Time Magazine. 2006-04-14. Archived from the original on 2008-05-27. Retrieved 2010-07-29.
- "Eeyore for Governor". The New Republic. 2006-04-14. Retrieved 2011-07-05.
- Associated Press, "Dayton Calls for Rogers tornado investigation", Star Tribune, September 19, 2006
- NWS, Weather.gov, NWS Service Assessment of September 16, 2006 Rogers, MN Tornado. Retrieved 2010-06-20.
- [dead link]
- "Dayton v. Hanson, U.S. Supreme Court Case Summary & Oral Argument". Oyez.org. Retrieved 2010-07-20.
- "Blog Round-Up: Dayton v. Hanson". SCOTUSblog. 2007-04-24. Archived from the original on March 7, 2008. Retrieved 2010-07-20.
- Grow, Doug (2010-10-11). "Latest GOP attack goes after Mark Dayton over legal settlement, arguing his actions differ from words". MinnPost.com. Retrieved 2011-07-05.
- Pugmire, Tim (January 16, 2009). "Mark Dayton plans to run for governor". Minnesota Public Radio News.
- Visit to the Blake School Northrop Campus on 2.19.2010; http://www.blakeschool.org
- "» Prettner Solon joins Dayton ticket, criticizes DFL legislative leadership". Politicsinminnesota.com. 2010-05-24. Retrieved 2010-07-20.
- "Statewide Results for Governor". Minnesota Secretary of State. August 10, 2010. Retrieved April 2, 2012.
- DFL formally endorses Dayton MinnPost.com, August 21, 2010.
- "Prelude to a recount". Politics in Minnesota. 2010-11-03. Retrieved 2010-11-03.
- "Some Recounts are More Equal than Others". Blog of the Moderate Left. 2010-11-03. Retrieved 2010-11-03.
- Stassen-Berger, Rachel E. (December 8, 2010). "Emmer concedes; says Dayton is next governor". Star Tribune. Retrieved December 8, 2010.
- "Statewide Results for Governor". Minnesota Secretary of State's Office. Retrieved 4 November 2010.
- "Tom Horner talks about his losing race for Governor". Minnesota Public Radio. 10 November 2010. Retrieved 12 November 2010.
- Furst, Jay (November 10, 2010). "Horner cost someone the election -- was it Emmer or Dayton?". Post-Bulletin. Retrieved April 2, 2012.
- "Governor Dayton Signs Executive Orders Implementing Medicaid Opt-In In First Act As Governor". Office of the Governor, Mark Dayton. January 5, 2011. Retrieved April 2, 2012.
- Kimball, Joe (March 23, 2011). "Dayton signs bill adding penalties for injuring police dogs". MinnPost. Retrieved April 2, 2012.
- Broken deals, bitter words and a state shuts down - Star Tribune
- "Dayton signs budget, shutdown ends". Star Tribune. July 20, 2011. Retrieved April 2, 2012.
- Mike Kaszuba Dayton meeting with NFL commissioner, Star-Tribune, December 17, 2010, Accessed July 3, 2012.
- Duchschere, Kevin (May 10, 2011). "Ramsey County Vikings? $1 billion stadium agreement says yes". Star Tribune. Retrieved May 10, 2011.
- Baran, Madeleine (January 18, 2012). "Ramsey County Vikings? $1 billion stadium agreement says yes". Minnesota Public Radio. Retrieved July 3, 2012.
- Lambert, Brian (May 11, 2011). "Dayton opts not to endorse Vikings stadium site". MinnPost. Retrieved July 3, 2012.
- "Gov. Dayton, Legislative Leaders, Minneapolis, & Vikings Announce Stadium Agreement". Minnesota Vikings. March 1, 2012.
- 2012 Minn. Laws Ch. 299
- Finally: Vikings stadium approved by Senate
- Stadium gets final sign-off
- Gov. Dayton’s Minnesota Poll approval rating climbs to 57%
- "Mark Dayton on the Issues". Ontheissues.org. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "How Interest Groups Rate the Senators". Electoral-vote.com. 2000-12-31. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "Environment". Markdayton.org. 2010-05-24. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "Congressional Voting Scorecard 2005" (PDF). SBE Council’s Congressional Voting Scorecard 2005. Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council. June 2006. Retrieved 2006-11-02.
- "Health Care". Markdayton.org. 2010-05-24. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "Mark Dayton on Health Care". Ontheissues.org. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- Dayton, Mark (2008-03-23). "This time, let's be fair about the budget gap". Startribune.com. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "Taxes & Budget". Markdayton.org. 2010-05-24. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "Jobs". Markdayton.org. 2010-05-24. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "Education". Markdayton.org. 2010-05-24. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "Mark Dayton on Health Care". Ontheissues.org. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "Mark Dayton on Social Security". Ontheissues.org. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "Lieberman Joins in Introducing Domestic Partnership Benefits for Gay and Lesbian Federal Employees". Senate Committee on Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs. 2003-06-11. Retrieved 2010-11-04.[dead link]
- "Marriage Equality". Markdayton.org. 2010-05-24. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "S. 1756: Department of Peace and Nonviolence Act". govtrack.us. Retrieved 2011-07-05.
- Rachel E. Stassen-Berger and Baird Helgeson, 'People have a right to know,' Dayton says, Star Tribune, December 27, 2009
- Stassen-Berger, Rachel E.; Walsh, Paul (December 21, 2012). "Gov. Dayton plans to have back surgery next week at Mayo". Star Tribune.
- "Muscle tear causes Dayton to cancel appearance".
- "Minnesota Secretary of State's Office, Retrieved, November 3rd, 2010". Electionresults.sos.state.mn.us. 1997-02-26. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
- "The 2010 Results Maps". Politico.Com. Retrieved 2010-08-21.
- "Election results".
- General Election Results, Minnesota Secretary of State
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Mark Dayton.|
- Governor Mark Dayton official Minnesota site
- Mark Dayton for Governor
- Mark Dayton on the Open Directory Project
- U.S. Senate
- Biography at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
- Financial information (federal office) at the Federal Election Commission