As Minnesota lawmakers break from the Capitol for the campaign, they leave behind a tale of two sessions. Last year: tax increases to fix a broken budget. This year: tax breaks from a budget surplus.
The Minnesota House overwhelmingly passed a bill on Friday that would legalize marijuana use for medical reasons but under tighter restrictions than a bill passed by the Senate earlier in the week.
Lawmakers entered a 10-day Easter/Passover break on Friday. Next week, House Democrats will hit the road to talk about what they’ve done so far, and Republicans will be sharpening their election year message.
Top Democrats in the State House Friday approved a scaled-back version of a major new office building next to the Capitol, dedicated to the Minnesota Senate. The building’s original design had a soaring glass front, with a fitness center and reflecting pool. The scaled back version is slightly more modest, but no less controversial.
The up-and-down medical marijuana bill at the Capitol may be down again. Top lawmakers in the House and Senate say it’s not likely to pass this year. Advocates of legalizing medical marijuana are hoping to make Minnesota the 20th state in the country to do so. Thursday, the advocates said it’s possible to pass it this year. But it’s not about medicine at this point at the Capitol; it’s about math.
The Minnesota House on Wednesday approved a bill that would raise state taxes by $2.6 billion in part by enacting the state’s first alcohol tax increase in about 25 years.
Minnesota lawmakers are settling in for a debate that’s expected to go all night long. It’s the $11 billion measure that pays for Health and Human Services programs, including hospitals and nursing homes.
Minnesota House Republicans have picked Rep. Kurt Daudt as their new minority leader.
Andrew Ojeda is a junior at Macalester College in St. Paul, and he’s pulling all-nighters for a different reason this fall.
Minnetonka-based United Healthcare has announced it will voluntarily offer many of the major benefits in the controversial new federal health care law – no matter how the U.S. Supreme Court rules.