Minnesota is losing one of its lifelong public servants to the sandy beaches and highly selective public universities of Southern California. Sandra Gardebring has chaired the Metropolitan Council, headed up the Department of Human Services, served as commissioner of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, sat on the state Supreme Court and currently holds the post of vice president for university relations at the U of M. She has announced that she's leaving Minnesota's flagship university to take a similar position at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo. She talks about her decision and her long and varied career in public service.
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(00:00:10) And good morning. Welcome to midday on Minnesota Public Radio. I'm Gary eichten. No disrespect intended, but it's seldom news. When a college vice president changes jobs University of Minnesota vice president for institutional relations. Sandra garter bring however is not your typical College vice president when she announced this week that she's leaving the you to take a job in California sure enough the Star Tribune saw fit to write a big article about it. And when you think about it, why not send regard to bring story is pretty interesting. She's had a remarkable range of public positions here in the state of Minnesota. Let's see she served on the Minnesota state supreme court the Minnesota court of appeals. She chaired the Metropolitan Council. She was commissioner of the State Department of Human Services and state Pollution Control agency commissioner twice. She worked for the Federal Environmental Protection Agency. She almost ended up as a federal district judge before she got caught up in partisan battles. Judicial nominations in Washington. She served as an Assistant Attorney General and heck at one time. She was even a newsroom newspaper reporter all in all a pretty interesting resume and Sandra Garda bring has joined us this hour to talk about her career about higher education the courts politics, whatever you'd like to talk about. Give us a call here, six five. One two, two seven six thousand. That's our Twin City area number six five. One two, two seven six thousand toll free number is 1-800-218-4243 or comment online go to our website, Minnesota Public Radio dot org and click on send a question and a guard to bring thanks for coming over today never sure what to call you. Now Vice President your honor commissioner or Sandy, that would be fine morning Gary. How are you? I'm just fine can't hold a job (00:01:58) Kenya, you know, that's what my father used to say that I just couldn't hold a job. He was wishing I'd get something more stable and quit moving around, but but it's been a lot of (00:02:07) fun. Why are you leaving the University of Minnesota? (00:02:10) Well not for any desk discontent about the university. It's a terrific place. I've worked for two terrific presidents a couple of reasons of the opportunity in California came along in a community where my husband and I were eventually going to move San Luis Obispo is in the Central Coast of California great place and there's an opportunity there at the Cal State School, which is called Cal Poly. So combination of family reasons and a great opportunity in a part of the state that we wanted to be (00:02:46) you have had as I noted an amazing number and range of high-powered positions. Which one is your favorite? (00:02:57) Well, I really think my favorite was the first stint I spent at the pollution control agency. It was in the late 70s environmental law was really burgeoning we were able to put in place some new programs work on hazardous waste issues and Superfund sites and acid rain and air quality issues for me. That was kind of my first big job. And of course in Minnesota environmental issues are always important. So that was that was great fun. I can't of course neglect the Minnesota Supreme Court for a lawyer. There's no better place the most interesting critical issues eventually get to the court systems and make their way up to high Court's like the Minnesota Supreme Court. So it's hard to pick one. But I'd say those were my two favorites so far, (00:03:50) but if I remember correctly when you were coming to the end of your Supreme Court, Segment of the that segment of your life and you were going over to the university were saying how you just kind of boring weather. I don't think you used the word boring awfully quiet in the halls of (00:04:06) justice and that that's right. I don't think I used the word boring but I would say isolated isolating very intellectual a lot of stimulation cerebrally, but I missed the people I missed the direct problem solving as a judge. It's hard to be out engaged in the community really need to kind of stick to your knitting over there at the judicial Center and I loved it. But eventually I started to feel like I was just disconnected from the kinds of policy issues that I had long worked on and that I wanted to continue to work on. (00:04:44) Is there any job that you always wanted to have that you haven't done yet? (00:04:50) Yes. There is it's interesting. You would ask. I always wanted to be the commissioner of natural resources and Sarah. Huh? It's kind of the corollary to the environmental Pollution Control job. And as I was thinking no one ever suggested. I'd be the commissioner nor did I put my name forward but I was thinking gee I have had a lot of good jobs, but what would have been fun? And I think working on protection of Minnesota's a natural resources would have been a great job and I've stayed involved in those issues. I'm on the board of the Minnesota chapter of The Nature Conservancy. So I've tried to play out that part of the interest in another (00:05:30) way. Why didn't you put your name in it at any point? (00:05:33) Gosh. I don't know it never occurred to me. I guess I was moved from one thing to the other and as opportunities came along. I took advantage of them. So maybe there'll be another chance. I don't know. I'm not done yet. You know, (00:05:47) Senator Garda bring is our guest she has as you heard if you tune a little late. She has announced that she's leaving the University of Minnesota where she serving as vice president for institutional. Going off to California where she will be retiring at some point. She's come by today to talk about her career what she's experienced over the years serving on the courts serving as a state commissioner working at the University of Minnesota is a vice president really whatever you'd like to talk about. Give us a call here, six five. One two, two seven six thousand. That's our Twin City area number 6512276 thousand outside. The Twin Cities toll free number is 1-800-218-4243 our website Minnesota Public Radio dot org and click on send a question higher education. Let's talk a little bit about that. What do you think is the long-term outlook for the University of Minnesota. I mean, is it is it going to have enough money to do what it wants to do? (00:06:50) Well, I think that's a very critical question. What concerns me at this point is that we I seem to have abandoned the idea that higher education is really the key to the Future in Minnesota art rolnick from the Federal Reserve always says that the investment we started making in higher ed about 50 years ago helped Drive our per capita income from about twenty sixth among the 50 states to about 5th or 6th. He attributes it to a very energized and very robust higher ed system that robust system especially at the University cannot be sustained without adequate investment and like all parts of higher ed, the university experienced a big reduction in its state appropriation. We sucked it up frankly. I did what we needed to do took a salary freeze cut insurance benefits for our staff, but we can't keep doing that being a research University requires investment in major. Infrastructure new faculty some of the faculty and science come with a million dollar price tag. They want labs. They want assistant professors working for them. They want graduate students. We need to stay competitive because there is no Stanford. There is no MIT. We are at at the University in terms of driving forward the research agenda for Minnesota. (00:08:21) Why do you suppose a state support here in Minnesota and apparently in a lot of other states as well State support for public education public higher education has gone steadily down over the years. What's that work there? (00:08:36) Well, you're right. It is not just in Minnesota. It's in California where I'll move its across the country. My sense is that there is a perception that higher education is more a private good than a public good that is that if one gets a Degree, your lifetime income is likely to increase by close to a million dollars in it goes up with Advanced degrees. Why shouldn't we each pay for that? Why shouldn't we make our own personal investment to get the return on investment in our future income? I think what's missed is the overall public benefit the invention of new ideas the delivery of those new ideas to solve society's problems, you know, we can't charge enough tuition to support a medical student. We're already among the highest tuition in the country. So it's that public benefit that we need to pay attention to (00:09:36) is Minnesota have too many colleges and universities. You think are we are we cutting the pie up into too many small pieces. (00:09:43) Well, I certainly think it's something to look at across the state of the system of community colleges and technical colleges and four-year schools has been designed to meet a standard that There should be higher education within 35 miles of every town of more than 5,000 people and that means we have a highly distributed system that has a value attached to it. It's the easy to get to higher ed. People can get Technical Training and other training close to their homes. They don't have to move but the cost is very high the cost of maintaining the physical and human infrastructure is high and I think it's worth examining whether or not Minnesota can continue to support that broadest system. (00:10:33) And in terms of the schools that exist are Minnesota taxpayers getting the most for their dollar that's invested. There is a perception. I think it's fair to say fairly wild widely held that universities and colleges are kind of loosey-goosey when it comes to running real tight ship financially. That there are areas that can be paired back. Maybe the benefits are too rich or you know, whatever. It might be. What did you (00:11:04) find? Your perception is right the polling that we do at the University suggest exactly. What you say is the widely held sense that universities are not as well run higher ed is not as well run as people would like for it to be my own observation. I guess is twofold first of all at the University. It's a highly decentralized system. So it requires strong Management in a number of places. But secondly at least in the six years, I've been there there has been a strong commitment to good stewardship of the public money good management practices president bruininks has instituted a major initiative around service and continuous Improvement. It's really modeled after the way that businesses look at trying to Use technology for better business practices all of the things that business does can be a many of them can be applied to the business side of the University purchasing benefits maintenance of buildings. All of those kinds of things (00:12:12) talking this hour with Center Garda bring who is the who is leading the University of Minnesota is vice president for international institutional relations. She joined us today to talk about what has been a very interesting and varied career here in Minnesota all the things she's done. She served on the state supreme court, of course, he's been working at the U of M. She served as a commissioner of the pollution control agency to terms and that job Commissioner of Human Services. She was chair of the Metropolitan Council all kinds of interesting experiences. She joined us today to talk about her career and some of the issues that have come up in those many many areas again, if you'd like to join our conversation, six five, one two, two seven six thousand or 1-800 to for 22828 or use our online. Line service. Our web address is Minnesota Public Radio dot-org when you get there. Click on send a question Dan your first go ahead please I'm is Greta bring thanks for taking my call. I work in higher ed also and I want to go back to something you mentioned about the funding of higher education and I'm troubled because I encountered I've encountered recently a lot of educated people who don't understand that they have a responsibility back to you know, paying for these institutions. Once they leave I have a dear friend who just finished his medical schooling in Minnesota, and he doesn't understand why he has to pay such high taxes. And I I wonder if you have an opinion about how we educate people to sort of encourage them to support may be paying higher taxes so we can keep these great institutions. (00:13:47) Well, you've really put your finger on a key and that is the connection between professions like Health Care in Minnesota the City trains most of the Physicians most of the Pharmacists and many other of the healthcare professionals and the cost of training Professionals in those fields as well as in fields, like engineering and in other high-tech areas that cost is very high and tuition simply does not is not able to support it. So we need kind of a partnership. We need the state support to develop the infrastructure for research to support the infrastructure for medical schools. And then we need tuition. And of course the University's been successful at raising private money as well. But it simply can't be the case that the tuition payments are going to be adequate. They're never going to be adequate for programs like Medical School dental school. And again, there's no other choice in Minnesota. We're not like, Massachusetts or California where there lots of research universities lots of medical schools. Lots of Middle schools lots of veterinary schools in a state is agriculturally oriented as this we need a good vet school. And that does require some states support. No question (00:15:07) Karen. I your question. (00:15:09) Thank you. This is Karen Cole calling. Sandy will be very missed here. Thank you Karen. I had a question about the courts. What is your view of the (00:15:21) increasing attempt to make our courts (00:15:24) political and now that we're heading into an election. How do you think judicial (00:15:30) candidates and the voters should be approaching the judicial (00:15:35) elections? Karen I'm quite worried about the politicization of the judicial election process, but you know, it's a delicate balance judges should be held accountable in some way. I'm not sure that making arrangements for them to have political endorsements to speak on issues that may come before them is the way to create that accountability. The most important thing I think for judges is to project a sense of fairness and objectivity that judges have not decided in advance and I think the concern of course is that in order to get a political endorsement. You really do have to speak to what you will do and frankly my experience is you really don't know what you're going to do until those cases come before you there are fact patterns. There's the law and it's really the combination of those things in a particular instance that give rise. It's to the decision. So I'm worried about it. I hope that the voters in Minnesota will pay careful attention to judicial elections, but do not allow them to be politicized (00:16:49) do judges when they get on the bench. Can they set aside their personal biases when they decide cases? (00:16:54) Well, Gary, you know, it's kind of a tricky question and I think in general the answer is yes, I will tell you that any number of cases came before The Supreme Court when I was a judge where my personal of you might have led me to ax where I apology maker but judges are not policymakers and there are statutes that dictate the outcome in cases. There is a long history of judge-made law what's called common law judges are bound by what's gone before them in earlier cases. So I would say the general world view that someone brings to the bench days with them, but my experience with the judges that I served. Found the court of appeals and the Minnesota Supreme Court is that they worked very hard to set aside. What would be considered biases (00:17:46) that being the case then why shouldn't the voter be told where a candidate stands and at least in in general terms on the issues of the day assuming then when that person gets elected they will be able to set that aside and and make a decision based on the facts. At least the voter then would have some notion of who they're voting for. (00:18:08) Again. It's kind of a slippery slope of course voters should have some notion of who they're voting for and should have some sense of the person who will become a judge. But if I express my opinion on the need for wetland protection in Minnesota, I'm all for it or I'm all against it and you vote for me because you're you share my view about Wetland protection in a wetland protection case comes to the court. Either I'm going to have decided in advance because that's what I told you or I'm going to only look at the cases. It comes in which case I will it'll be kind of a bait-and-switch kind of a tactic. So, you know, I it's hard to create a system where the voters get enough of a sense of who people are without requiring them to speak before cases come to them. But I think that's what we should strive for enough information so that you have a sense of the values the life experience the general standard someone will bring to the court but not the details on how they'll decide a particular issue. That's worrisome. (00:19:22) What is judicial activism the activist judge? What is (00:19:27) that? I really wish I knew I think it's in the eye of the beholder. If you are a conservative, I suppose you view people who take a liberal perspective. Of on the bench as activists and vice versa. I think that is a somewhat pejorative term that is applied to judges that people believe are reaching beyond what the law would say overturning statutes that have been adopted by an appropriate legislative process making decisions that reach Beyond past precedent. And again, it is in the eye of the beholder judges are required to look backward at precedent to make decisions that are going to reach forward but they also need to reflect current conditions the Constitution never contemplated cell phones or helicopters that could fly over fields and so on. So those basic tenants of the law have to keep one has to keep reinterpreting them in light of new facts and how they are. Interpreted and whether that's judicial activism or just plain good judicial thinking depends on your perspective. I think (00:20:45) former Revenue Commissioner Clyde Allen's on the line commissioner. Go ahead, please hi Sandy. (00:20:52) Good morning agent (00:20:53) Alan. How are you? Oh a first-name basis of the (00:20:58) Regents at the University of Minnesota has I'm trying to be good (00:21:04) indeed. I just wanted to wish you the best of luck in to thank you for all the good work you've done for Minnesota and for the country at large we've known each other since you were director of PCA and of course more importantly in recent months, we've worked together for University and it's been fun to renew that acquaintance. So thank you for all of that good work and best of luck and I look forward to chatting with you a little bit and find out how everything's (00:21:31) going. Thank you Clyde, you know Clyde Alan Gary is also a remarkable public. In Minnesota, he was involved in one of the early taxpayer organizations. He worked in a gubernatorial Administration, and now he's doing Yeoman Service as a regent of the university and brought a lot of good fiscal sensibility to the board. So Clyde. Thank you as well. (00:21:56) Well, good luck to you Cindy. Thanks. Thanks for your comments. Let's move on to another caller and Terry. Go ahead, please hi Sandy. My name is Terry and I'm calling from Ely and and first of all, thanks for taking my call. And I want to thank you for all that. You've done Sandy for water quality as commissioner. The mpca specifically back in the 70s. When you supported our project here in Ely you may recall back in the seventies your travel up to Ely to tour our Wastewater Plant, which was a EPA project that demonstrated that by removing extremely high levels of phosphorus from our Waste Water Supply were able to reverse the eutrophication or age Not process of our Lake and one to let you know that that project was very successful. And and we thank you very much for all the support you gave us and wish you the best of luck (00:22:47) Terry. Thank you. And I do remember the project very well and I'm glad to hear that there was a long-term payoff for it as well (00:22:54) Sandy at that time. I was a young operator at the plant and and and I was impressed when you came up with a because I believe you drank a glass of our effluent and that was pretty impressive at the time. (00:23:06) You know, I can't remember that party, right? You know, I visited almost every sewage treatment plant in Minnesota over the course of my years at the PCA. So I don't remember drinking effluent, but (00:23:20) gosh, I might have done it. Who knows? Well, thanks so much for everything and we wish you the best of luck in all of your endeavors. Thank you. Our guest this hour is Sandra garter bring who used to be the commissioner of the pollution control agency. Matter of fact, she held that job twice. She used to be the commissioner of Human Services. So she used to be the chair of the Metropolitan Council. She's to serve on the Minnesota court of appeals. She used to serve on the Minnesota state supreme court. She currently is serving as vice president for institutional relations at the U of M, but not for much longer next month. She goes to California, and she's joined us today to talk about her career and some of the many issues that she has dealt with over these years in public service. If you'd like to join our conversation, give us a call six five, one two, two seven six thousand, or you can reach us toll-free at 1-800-222-8477 Asotin public radio dot org. When you get there click on send a question. We get to more of your questions in a couple minutes programming is supported by a concert to benefit America coming together featuring Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band REM and bright eyes, October 5th at Xcel Energy Center tickets available this Saturday at 11:00 a.m. By phone at a ticketmaster.com. (00:24:33) What are you doing this weekend working in the garden running (00:24:36) errands heading to the lake whatever it is. Take Minnesota Public Radio goofy, hype a personalities Saturday at noon right after Car Talk check out our new show public radio weekend. It's two hours of news and stories about life and music and the Arts you take fresh lemon or lime and chili and stick around for Splendid Table with Lindros at oh Casper and This American Life with Ira Glass. Enjoy your Saturday With a Little Help from Minnesota public radio (00:25:02) right now. It's time for some news headlines. There's Perry finale Perry Gary's get her gun. Fire is echoing through Naja streets as the Iraqi civilians and unarmed militia Fighters. Mingle in peace in the Imam Ali's Shrine muqtada al-sadr supporters have removed all their weapons from the site. They've been using as a base for a tax on u.s. And Iraqi forces and interior Ministry spokesman says police entered the shrine and arrested four hundred armed militants, but reporters inside the Moss a not a single officer enter the compound and no arrests have been made. Attorney General John Ashcroft says three Palestinian activists have been indicted on racketeering charges for allegedly raising money for attacks in Israel officials. Say the three use bank accounts in the u.s. To launder millions of dollars to support Hamas suit to support Hamas. One of the activists is described as a former Chief and current Deputy Chief of the Hamas political Bureau. He is still at large the other two men were arrested late last night. John. Kerry says average folks deserve a president who understands them. The Democrat is campaigning in North Carolina today. He blames the state's job losses on President Bush's tax cuts. And when he says his bushes lack of interest in everyday Americans a memorial fountain for Princess Diana has reopened the London Memorial was shut down days after its debut in July Falling Leaves clog the system and a few visitors were hurt after falling on the unexpectedly slippery Granite. The fountain now has a warning that says no waiting in Regional news several Minnesota schools fared. Well in the new US News and world Port annual ranking of America's best colleges the magazine publishes the rankings each year to guy prospective students in choosing a university colleges are measured by factors including faculty resources student selectivity and Financial Resources. The best Midwest masters programs category includes Hamline University. President. Larry. Austin says, he's proud Hamlin Hamlin ranks. Eighth in this year's Masters category. We're just delighted to be ranked among the top comprehensive universities in the country, but there are lots of great universities in this country. And in this region in Minnesota is very blessed to have wonderful colleges and universities. The 2005 edition of America's best colleges will be available at bookstores starting Monday and Gary that's an update for the Minnesota Public Radio Newsroom. All right. Thanks Perry. It's 27 minutes now before 12 o'clock. Midday coming to you on Minnesota Public Radio over the noon hour. We're going to hear from two members of the 9/11 Commission, of course commission members have been Fanning out across the country in pairs of two trying to get people interested. Dude in taking a close look at their recommendations and how to prevent future terrorist attacks commission itself is going out of business over the weekend. But as we say, the commission members have been busy two of those commission members were in San Francisco at the Commonwealth Club this week, and we will hear what they had to say and the questions that they took from audience members that's coming up over the noon hour this hour we're talking with Sandra Garda bring if we were to list all of the jobs. She's held in Minnesota Public Service. We'd be here for quite a long while suffice to say she served on the state supreme court. She served as a state commissioner. She served in the state appeals court currently working as a University of Minnesota vice president for institutional relations. She's leaving the you going to California, but she's come by today to talk about her career and talk about some of the many issues that she has confronted over the years again, if you'd like to join our conversation the number of 6512276 thousand. Our 1-800 to for 22828 or you can send in your question online. Go to Minnesota Public Radio dot org and click on send a question. Do you regret that? You were not able to get appointed did not get confirmed as to the federal US District Court bench. (00:28:53) Well, I think again kind of a two-part answer. I think I would have enjoyed being a federal district court judge. I would have certainly like to have been a trial judge at some point. I think being in the courtroom and managing that process is important. I'm a huge believer in the jury system. I would have liked to have been part of that, you know on the other hand. I'm kind of a fatalist and an optimist. I guess I just wasn't supposed to get that job. And since I've had lots of other wonderful jobs other great opportunities came along I you know, it would have been great. But I'm you know, I don't regret much in terms of my professional life it Was something that I wanted I did the best I could I think I did get caught up in the partisan politics between the two senators in Minnesota. But so be it that's the way the system works. I'm tremendously impressed with the people on the federal bench in Minnesota. We have an extraordinary group of Judges. There's no question about it. So they do awfully good (00:29:55) work. How long can the courts continue to operate given the partisan bickering in Washington over judicial nominations. This has been going on for some long while your nominations I Rel Carl came up in 1993 exactly certainly Gates back that far predates actually and how long can the courts continue to operate like (00:30:18) this? Well, there are perennial shortages in the federal courts both at the district level and the Appellate Court level, but I think it is important to remember that most judges who are nominated do get confirmed. The high-profile nominees over the last several years that have been stalled in the senate for one reason or another really represent a fairly small portion of those individuals who get nominated and I think 90% or more who get nominated move through the process. It's lengthy. There's a very deep and thorough background check. There's a lot of analysis of previous writings and so on but ultimately most people do get through. So I think people just have to pay attention to that time frame in that quality because the federal courts are really becoming more and more courts of Last Resort for many kinds of issues. So it's important that those folks get on the bench (00:31:20) quickly Katie your (00:31:21) question. Hi. I'm calling from South Minneapolis, and I'm actually an employee at the University on the st. Paul campus at our research nursery, and I wanted to bring the discussion back to bed. It cuts we've been getting because we have been so short on funding. We've been getting a lot of Grants from companies and a lot of other researchers have beginning Corporation grants funding from other companies and I've seen buildings built on campus that were completely funded by corporations. I was wondering if you thought that the funding from these is a influence on or dictates kind of what is being researched at the University and also how it affects education if its influence in the education and if so if there's any way to avoid this problem, okay, I think that's a wonderful question. Sometimes people call that the corporatization of higher education. I think at the University of Minnesota, we've handled that very well the building that you're referring to on the st. Paul campus is probably what we call the Cargill building for molecular and molecular genetics that agreement with card. You'll did not allow them to dictate any of the research there. They have no particular access to the outcomes that aren't available in any other way through our technology commercialization process. The agreement with Cargill was they agreed to give us ten million dollars and we agreed to take 10 million dollars. So that was a pretty clean agreement. I think as a general matter of some universities have moved to a different kind of a system where the corporate donors have had more influence, but we have not moved in that direction at the University. I think there's a strong sense that that would be inappropriate on the other hand. We need that source of research funding. We need the state to provide the infrastructure the Laboratories the libraries in the faculty and that needs to link up very tightly with Federal research funding and some private research funding (00:33:32) and From st. Paul Ascend an online question for you Center guard to bring Andy asks, what role does increasing anti-intellectualism contribute to the erosion of public support for Education higher and (00:33:44) otherwise boy anti-intellectualism. You know, I'm not sure that I I can answer that question. I work at a university. We're not at all anti-intellectual. I don't have a sense that that's a big public theme. I do have a sense that across the country. There is a resistance to Public Funding for many kinds of things again our research at the University and and we did this research with other big 10 schools suggest that the only public sector activity that the citizens of Minnesota are willing to pay more for is K through 12 education. They don't find the university unsatisfactory. They think it's high quality as they do about the rest of higher ed in But they're really not prepared to pay much additional funding for it. And that's I think the challenge we have we have to convince people that again tuition can't bear the cost the state needs to support the infrastructure and be a partner with students with researchers with donors to make that package that supports higher ed. (00:34:56) Paul your question, please yes. My question is I'm a Vietnam vet and it seems like there's a lot of one of the basic causes of war is sometimes a difference between right and wrong or good or bad. And if if what we're trying to do by our system of laws is to determine to differentiate between good or bad or right or wrong by laws. Then doesn't partisan politics really become dangerous when one party thinks that it holds the truth and then the other party disagrees totally and it become so That there becomes no coming together of the of the philosophy of the the culture or the civilization (00:35:42) Paul. You do put your finger on an interesting thing. It's what's called an international Theory the rule of law and it simply means that there is a guiding principle that is controlling irrespective of one's partisan perspective. I should say however that we don't try to determine right or wrong with the law. We really try to make decisions about what's legal or what's not legal legal or illegal and there are in my view are many things that are legal that would be in my personal judgment. Probably not good things to do and would be bad things but the the law is really kind of a narrow tool in that respect. So I think we need good carefully rendered laws. We need a good court system that will enforce the Of Law and then I think within that there's still lots of room for individual choices and ethics and morality. So it's a complex system to determine (00:36:43) you think everybody gets a fair Shake in the judicial system in Minnesota (00:36:47) candidly. I think some people get a fair Shake than others. I think we're about as good a judicial system as it exists in the country. I spent a lot of time in my almost 10 years on the bench looking across the country at Best Practices, but I think it's fair to say that especially on the criminal justice side. We need to work much harder at dealing with racial issues. If you look at the number of young African-American men imprisoned if you look at the patterns of incarceration, I think we have some work to do there (00:37:25) or caller was talking about was talking about polarization, especially along political lines. Could the nation in your mind put up with another election decided by the US Supreme Court Allah (00:37:38) 2000. Well, I suppose if that's what happens. We'll have to put up with it. Am I worried frankly was that the confidence that people have in the court system that objectivity was really damaged by the behavior of the Supreme Court in the last election. I was absolutely stunned the Supreme Court agreed to take the case and make a decision that in my view grew out of election law in Florida and would have best been left and most appropriately been left to the Florida Supreme Court if one speaks of judicial activism, my personal sense of that is that was an extraordinary Act of judicial activism. But ultimately whether whatever the decision is, I think it's the sense that people need to have that courts are fair and they do not get in the middle of things which really ought to be political like elections. (00:38:38) What about I don't want to say that this is some some kind of broad-based movement sweeping the world or anything but more and more legislation has being proposed which deliberately cuts the judicial branch out of reviewing legislation. I'm thinking specifically of same-sex marriage related bills, but there are other instances of this as well. Is that a good idea that the notion is these judges are kind of independent. They're not going to reflect people's will we the legislature better reflect the people's will and so we're gonna pass these laws and and keep the judges a out of it. (00:39:20) Well, you know people attempt to pass those laws, but ultimately there is within the jurisprudence of this country a mechanism under the Constitution to challenge laws and the Congress for example is not in a position to ultimately restrict the right of judges to review a piece of legislation. If it is challenged on constitutional grounds, if it is for example challenged as a violation of equal protection or due process a statute is kind of irrelevant at that point certainly that I don't know if it's a broad-based pattern, but certainly that has emerged that idea that courts shouldn't be involved has emerged across the country. I think it grows out of just the sense that you're talking about judicial activists again, depending on which side of the issue you may be on but at least under the Existing constitutional system that we have and it's similar in Most states courts do ultimately have an ability to review statutes based on their constitutional rectitude or (00:40:32) not. But in terms of like passing a constitutional amendment at the state or federal level is that appropriate in your mind then because that would take the courts (00:40:44) out of the indeed indeed. Well, you know, there are a number of Constitutional Amendments on kind of hot button social issues that are pending both in Minnesota. And nationally that is deliberately a very difficult process. It ought not to be easy to amend the Constitution. It is not easy. It requires a long-term sustained effort across the country to make a change in the Federal Constitution. So if that if the activists or The Advocates I should say for those positions are able to Stay in that energy over time, then probably they deserve to get the amendment passed but it is deliberately by virtue of the way. The Constitution was written Constitution is written very very (00:41:31) difficult Frank your question, please yeah, good morning. I'm Frank from st. Paul. I just want to say one thing that when Miss harboring was commissioner at the human services department and I remember she worked very well with bringing people together having serving to Refugee from South Asia that time and I admire her so much of her sense of intellectual and compassion. So I invited her to officiate my wedding back in the early 90s, and I'm not sure if you remember that but I went out with the White Horse. (00:42:06) How could I forget that (00:42:08) wedding (00:42:09) White Horse and your wife danced in because she was a dance (00:42:12) major. Yes, I remember so okay, but I just want to ask a question. I know that we're going to miss you a lot. I want to ask you a What what are good advice is you have to the young women out there? I have a daughter right now in full grain SBA. I want to know that what kind of advice do you give to the people like become a role model like you because you're such a good person to give a lot of good service to the common work to the common good and and go to public servant and I want to have my daughter growing up and be like you so you can give before like her some advice (00:42:47) it Frank you're very kind and I certainly do remember your wedding and I'm glad that it all worked out in that you have a daughter in the fourth grade now, so, you know my advice to her would likely be the same advice you would give to her and that is that young women should have every opportunity. They should pursue every dream. They should look at all the options and you know, the choice of giving back I think is a value that emerges out of everyone's personal experience and my guess is in your family that value of giving back has got to be To the family culture. So good luck to you and to (00:43:22) her John your question, please my question goes back to the comment that the commissioner made regarding the taxpayers having to understand the difference between the services that were being provided in the value that was being provided from the University versus what the value of being provided at the primary education level. And I guess my question is is that due to the lack of funding that the services seemed to be someone lacking at the University and appreciation from from the public or is that just in general the size of the university is so is because it's so large. It doesn't provide the quality service that it should. (00:44:09) You know, I'm not sure that that I can answer your question. My sense is that people favor funding for K-12 from public coffers because there is no other source of funding for K-12 education by and large. I think when you look at the University or at other institutions of higher ed, they see other sources of funding again, it's tuition. It's philanthropy from the very generous donors of Minnesota. It is federal research money and other federal funds. So I think it's just the sense that boy K12 has got to be supported by the public and other institutions have other choices. I would just say, you know, the university on the Twin Cities campus is is big but don't forget. We have three other wonderful campuses across the state that are much smaller and offer much more smaller college experience, so It's were really kind of a we offer a variety of programs for folks (00:45:14) politicians. You've known a good many of them who are your favorites? (00:45:20) Wow. That is a good question. Well, of course, I really have to identify Governor Rudy perpich who was really a mentor to me. He appointed me to be the commissioner of the PCA. I was 29 years old had no political experience. (00:45:36) Is it true that he interviewed you in the Farrell's Ice Cream Parlor that (00:45:39) is absolutely true. He not only interviewed me he gave me the job and then he said, you know, there's a State Trooper outside and he'll drive you to the capital to meet with the capitol, press Corps. So so I didn't have much time to think about it and in a way we went but I thought he was a remarkable public servant. He had a strong sense of personal values that guided his decision-making but there have been many many others. I think Duane Benson was a remarkable public. Sort of and he served in the legislature at a time when bipartisanship was much more the order of the day and I got to know him when he worked with my husband then a Minnesota House member Paul ogrin on the Minnesota care bill is again a very bipartisan effort. I don't see that as much anymore. Maybe it's that I'm just an old fuddy-duddy and I think it was better in the old days. But but I have a sense that commitment to being for something rather than just against things that deep deep partisan divide his really emerged in a way. That was not very familiar to me. (00:46:48) Mmm. What about business leadership Community Civic leadership by used to be that we'd always here boy. Minnesota was had a great quality of life because all the the big names and business got together and made sure that the institutions were strong that things were moving along property. We still getting that kind of leadership if we ever (00:47:11) I think that there's been kind of a myth that Business Leaders have disappeared and they haven't been as engaged in a Civic agenda. I don't really observe that at least from where I sit at the University. There is a strong business leadership Cadre. I think the explicit emergence of the Itasca project which is led by a number of the major CEOs in Minnesota. And a number of political leaders is really a direct outgrowth of the idea that gosh we need that business opinion leader agenda to be fully developed and I found that to be a productive effort. They're working on a regional transportation plan. They support the university. They're working on building business. It's really a Civic and an economic development agenda. So I think the much advertised loss of business leadership is just a myth. Hmm. (00:48:09) Bob quick question here. Good morning, Sandy. Thank you Gary Sandy. My name is Bob - water. I'm an old neighbor of yours indeed. How are you? Well, I am well and how are you good thank you know is that was listening to Gary took off all these various jobs that you've had a thought kind of entered my mind that perhaps you have a real hard time with long-term commitments to anything here. (00:48:35) Well, don't tell my husband. I've been married to him for 15 years and I'm planning to stick with it. So good for you and I (00:48:43) want to wish both of you. Well, I I've known Paul for quite a long time. I've watched your career. I am particularly proud of what you did at PCA as a lifelong conservationist myself. I applaud the work that you did and and I'm just kind of curious. Is there any one particular issue that you dealt with either in government service or in your term is? Jurist, is there one particular thing of which you are particularly (00:49:15) proud? Well, thank you for your kind words. First of all, I don't know about particularly proud. I'll tell you the thing that I wrestled with more than any other issue in my life. And that was an adoption case that came to the Minnesota Supreme Court a child who had been taken away from her mother at a very early age placed at a few months placed in foster care. The foster parents wanted to adopt her as did her grandparents and my feeling was there are so many children for whom there is no family waiting and he was a little girl who would have been well taken care of in either home loved and either home protected and nurtured and seven members of the Minnesota Supreme Court were supposed to decide which loving family she would live with I'm not sure that's a good mechanism for making that kind of decision, but that was one that kept me up. Very long and very late worrying about that kind of thing. So courts are good mechanisms for most things some kinds of decisions probably ought to be made in a different way (00:50:27) Chandigarh to bring were pretty much out of time any chance you're going to come back or once you had to get to California the Sun the warmth. That's it. Well, it (00:50:36) is pretty appealing but as I mentioned I haven't been the DNR commissioner and that would bet. You know, that's a possibility that's still on my list here. He so thanks for having me today. It's been a lot of (00:50:45) fun. Thanks for coming over Sandra guard to bring who is the outgoing University of Minnesota vice president for institutional relations courses. We were noting through the course of the program. She has held a number of high-profile important jobs here in the state of Minnesota. She served on the state supreme court State appeals court. She served as a state commissioner chair of the Metropolitan Council list goes on and on and on she is a leaving the university next month Bound for California. We're going to break for some news headlines and then when we come Ack. We are going to hear from two members of the 9/11 commission as they fan out across the country trying to convince people to pay closer attention to how to prevent future terrorist (00:51:27) attacks programming is supported by Whole Foods Market proud to sponsor A Prairie Home Companion at the State Fair on Saturday September 4th an opportunity to see this show is available at Whole Foods Market in st. Paul and Minneapolis details at Whole Foods Market through August 27th, and by the Minneapolis Institute of Arts now on view restoring a Masterwork to gear chinos Armenia in the shepherd's you can watch as a 17th century masterpieces return to its original Splendor online at Arts Mi a.org. (00:51:56) You're listening to Minnesota Public Radio. (00:52:01) Peter Yarrow of the trio Peter Paul and Mary will do a solo concert at the Fitzgerald theater on Saturday night a political activist and organizer Peter Yarrow has had a 40 year career. He'll play some of the songs. He's made famous and bring all of his talent and passion to the stage join us for a night of great music Saturday night for ticket information call six five. One two, nine zero 12:21 (00:52:27) your to 91.1 Canada wfm Minneapolis. And st. Paul Sunny Sky 58 degrees in the Twin Cities weather service says we can look for a high today 65 to 70 tonight. There's a good chance for frost in the Twin Cities area record low temperatures are possible overnight low is about 45 degrees in the central parts of the Twin City area upper 30s in the suburbs and outlying areas than tomorrow partly cloudy not too bad of a day 70 to 75 for a high.