1. Trump called Comey a 'grandstander,' and a 'showboat'
Fox News: President Trump on Thursday called fired FBI Director James Comey a “showboat” and “grandstander” who Trump intended to fire regardless of any recommendation from the Justice Department.
Trump, speaking to NBC News, gave his first in-depth remarks since the stunning ousting of Comey on Tuesday evening. He said, “Look he’s a showboat, he’s a grandstander. The FBI has been in turmoil. You know that, I know that. Everybody knows that. You take a look at the FBI a year ago, it was in virtual turmoil – less than a year ago. It hasn’t recovered from that.”
Trump said he had planned to fire Comey for some time, but “there’s no good time to do it by the way.”
Also related to this Comey news, Trump retweeted a December 2016 tweet from Rosie O’Donnell on Thursday that said, "FIRE COMEY."
Trump and O'Donnell's ongoing feud has lasted more than a decade, the height of which saw Trump notably call O'Donnell a "loser" and "fat pig" during a 2015 GOP debate. On Saturday, during the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) Media Awards, O'Donnell called the president "Satan."
2. 'A great day for Forest Lake,' union leader says after police approve contract
Star Tribune: If the City Council approves the agreement Monday, the Washington County city will retain its own police rather than turn the streets over to county sheriff's deputies.
Forest Lake police officers on Thursday unanimously approved a three-year contract that will keep them patrolling the city’s streets rather than county deputies, a surprising turnaround from the City Council’s decision to disband the department only days ago.
The City Council will vote Monday on whether to ratify the labor agreement.
Sean Gormley, executive director of Law Enforcement Labor Union, called Thursday “a great day for Forest Lake and a great day for our police officers.” His union represents the department’s 23 sworn officers.
The contract includes a 2-percent wage increase in each of the next two years, and a 3-percent increase in the third year; health insurance benefits for three years and upon retirement, along with provisions for medical leave; and more equitable arbitration rules.
In a statement, Mayor Ben Winnick said that both the city and the police union “made tough concessions.” He said he looked forward to the City Council discussion on the agreement.
3. Dayton to share pontoon with GOP leaders for fishing opener
KARE11: Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton will share a pontoon boat with Republican legislative leaders when he hits the Mississippi River in St. Cloud on Saturday for the 70th annual Minnesota Governor's Fishing Opener.
While Dayton, House Speaker Kurt Daudt and Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka have been at loggerheads over budget issues, the governor says it'll be a day for fishing, not deal-making.
Sharing Lt. Gov. Tina Smith's boat will be Rep. Ilhan Omar, the country's first Somali-American legislator.
This is the first time St. Cloud has hosted the governor's opener and the third time it's been held on the Mississippi. Friday's festivities include a community picnic.
Officials say the river's diverse and robust fishery in the St. Cloud area receives relatively low angling pressure and catch rates can be high.
4. DEVELOPING: U of M Athletics Official Investigated on Sexual Harassment Claims
KSTP: The University of Minnesota Board of Regents held an emergency meeting Thursday morning regarding a sexual harassment investigation of a top fundraiser in the university's athletics office who violated the school's policy.
Board Of Regents Chair Dean Johnson announced the board is launching an investigation into the source of KSTP's report on the sexual harassment investigation. The board is asking each of its 12 members, as well as university employees who had access to the information, to sign affidavits that they did not share it.
Randy Handel, the associate athletic director of development, was investigated by the University of Minnesota's Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action (EOAA) and was found to have sexually harassed an employee in the athletic department, according to an email sent to the Board of Regents Wednesday night.
5. This Washington County lake had a derogatory name. Now it’s called Keewahtin.
The Washington County board this week voted to change the name of Halfbreed Lake to Lake Keewahtin. The lake is just south of Minnesota 97.
The name change comes after a petition was presented to the city of Forest Lake regarding the lake’s derogatory name. Although the lake was commonly known as Sylvan Lake, its official name was Halfbreed. Petitioners asked to officially change the name to Sylvan.
But after several meetings and public hearings, residents requested that the lake instead be renamed Keewahtin. Keewahtin, which translates to “north wind,” is the name of the road that leads to the lake; the road also used to be known as “Halfbreed.”