The chair of the relevant Senate committee says he supports it. That may or may not mean it'll pass, but it seems silly to dismiss it with the sneer that it hasn't been funded so far.
It's certainly not "a transportation alternative that will literally change everything," as a Duluth advocate is quoted.
But as Amtrak plans go, the idea of a 4-round trip service running at max speeds of 90mph and averaging 60 mph is pretty ambitious and not uncompelling.
I fear the 100k people of Duluth/Superior aren't a weighty anchor. Advocates counter that this is conceived as a commuter and regional route. Maybe. Commuter habits take a while to establish, and post-covid is a perilous time to place that bet.
How much freight runs on this line? Little enough that 4 round-trips can be kept on time?
If I were in the new MN legislative majority, particularly the 1-seat margin in the Senate, I'm not sure I'd bet my seat on this. I wouldn't describe MN as a red or blue state, but as a state where anti-Trumpism is slightly stronger than anti-wokism. The goal is to avoid making marginal voters angrier than they already are at you. But it's naive to dismiss the train's chances out of hand in a Dem-held environment. And I don't think an in-state Amtrak service has much capacity to inspire new anti-DFL votes, so there may not be a big political price.