Minn. panel signals rough ride for Dayton adviser

Gov. Mark Dayton’s pick to head the Public Utilities Commission faces a tough path to Senate confirmation after a key panel declined to recommend her.

The Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications Committee forwarded former Sen. Ellen Anderson’s confirmation to the Senate floor without recommendation Thursday.

It’s the first sign that 1 of the Democratic governor’s cabinet members could be rejected by the Senate. The full Senate will vote on whether to confirm Anderson for the job.

The Republican-dominated energy committee grilled Anderson on issues ranging from her past positions on energy legislation to a part-time teaching job.

Afterward, Anderson says she’s very qualified for the job and was happy to move ahead in the process.

Earlier Thursday, a judiciary and public safety panel unanimously supported Dayton’s public safety chief, Ramona Dohman.