J. Patrick Coolican

J. Patrick Coolican

J. Patrick Coolican is Editor-in-Chief of Minnesota Reformer. Previously, he was a Capitol reporter for the Minneapolis Star Tribune for five years, after a Knight-Wallace Fellowship at the University of Michigan and time at the Las Vegas Sun, Seattle Times and a few other stops along the way. He lives in St. Paul with his wife and two young children

Trump endorses Jensen for governor

By: - October 26, 2022

Former President Donald Trump endorsed GOP nominee for governor Scott Jensen late Tuesday. “Minnesota finally has a chance to have a great Governor,” Trump wrote on his social media channel, Truth Social. Jensen will “bring Minnesota back from the brink,” he added, citing Jensen as “Strong on both fighting Crime and delivering Solid and Sensible […]


What did the oil industry know, and when?

By: - October 10, 2022

Every day the effects of climate change become more tangible, not as a future to fear, but as a reality to endure.  Sometimes we feel like we’re in a biblical parable. Western drought and heat waves are destroying grapes for wine, particularly ominous given its ancient association with fertility. Fires are ripping through forests and […]

Minnesota Reformer files motion seeking to unseal Mike Lindell search warrant documents

By: - September 28, 2022

The Minnesota Reformer and journalist Tony Webster filed a motion in federal court Wednesday seeking to unseal court documents related to a search warrant served on Minnesota pillow mogul and prominent election denier Mike Lindell.  Lindell said — and the FBI confirmed — that he surrendered his phone to agents in Mankato. He’s since sued Attorney […]


Jensen wants to eliminate the income tax, so he should tell us how much he’d personally save

By: - September 13, 2022

Republican candidate for governor Scott Jensen and his running mate Matt Birk don’t want to release their tax returns because, Jensen says, “I honestly don’t think we can trust the media to stay focused on the issues.” Unfortunately for Jensen, he may as well be talking about his own campaign, which has the focus of […]


Walz needs to confront test scores in his second term

By: - August 29, 2022

Minnesotans were hopeful that Tim Walz would become the education governor. He spent two decades in the classroom as a charismatic high school teacher and coach, and he’s married to an educator.  Surely, Walz was committed and prepared to deal with the burgeoning crisis in Minnesota schools.  What’s the crisis? The state’s once vaunted schools […]

Minnesota test scores down since pandemic; MDE pledges to do more

By: - August 25, 2022

Fewer than half of Minnesota students are proficient in math and 51% are proficient in reading, according to newly released results of standardized test scores. The portion proficient in math decreased from 55% to 45% since the the last pre-pandemic round of tests. Minnesota children proficient in reading decreased from 59% to 51%. Just 41% […]


Jensen says he can’t be sure who won the 2020 election, which is all you need to know

By: - August 19, 2022

When Republican nominee for governor Scott Jensen was asked on Minnesota Public Radio in March whether the 2020 election was stolen from then-President Donald Trump, here’s what he said: “I have no way of knowing that.”  This was a clever response because he cast doubt on the 2020 election, thereby pleasing the credulous fans of […]

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) July 23 2019

Primary results: What it all means

By: - August 10, 2022

This is ripped from Daily Reformer. Sign up to get it in your in-box every day — free!  Good morning.  U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar got the scare of her political life Tuesday with a narrow victory over Don Samuels in the DFL primary.   The note I wrote to myself as the returns were coming in:  […]


Daily Reformer: GOP unease about Doug Wardlow

By: - August 9, 2022

This is ripped from this morning’s Daily Reformer. Subscribe to our daily newsletter here.  Happy primary election day!  Our story from Michelle Griffith and Deena Winter is a handy guide to how to find your polling station and what races to watch.  We’ll have full team coverage tonight. For ye political junkies, some primary thoughts:  […]

Feds secure first publicly known plea in Child Nutrition Program case

By: - August 9, 2022

Federal prosecutors have secured a first publicly known plea agreement in the Feeding Our Future investigation, which involves alleged fraudulent use of taxpayer dollars from the federal Child Nutrition Program. Federal court records show Mohamed Jama Ismail signed a guilty plea agreement in late July for passport fraud.  Ismail’s passport was taken by the FBI […]


Your plane landed safely — thank the bureaucrats at the FAA

By: - August 5, 2022

A faddish phrase on the right is something called “the administrative state,” which refers to the federal workforce deputized by Congress to craft and enforce rules over the environment, banking, health care, product safety, mass communications, the power grid, etc.  A recent profile of the Claremont Institute — which has the unenviable task of stitching […]

Bye bye Birk Burger

By: - July 22, 2022

"Come out and eat at Shamrocks and don't worry about left and right politics — just come out and eat," Casper implored customers.