A Minnesota court will consider whether the state can cut the pensions of current retirees, a case that is being closely watched by other state governments facing budget shortfalls. Minnesota retirees have sued to keep their current pension payments, and the courts have often backed them up. "There is just not any political will to go back to citizens and say, 'We made these promises, and now we have to fulfill our obligations in total to the retirees,' " says Stephen Pincus, a lawyer for retirees.

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