Election Day came five months early for seven incumbents in the Minnesota Legislature. Six Republicans and one Democrat didn’t attract any opponents by Tuesday’s candidate filing deadline. Barring a write-in effort or a shocking turn of events, they’ll be assured new two-year terms that begin in January.
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.
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.
Minnesota lawmakers are considering a bill that aims to close the pay gap between men and women. Data from the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota show that the median full-time annual earnings of a woman in the state is about $10,000 less than a man’s.
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.
Democrats who lead the Minnesota Legislature left no doubt Wednesday that a minimum wage increase of some kind will prevail in the upcoming session.
The top Republican in the Minnesota House says he intends to stay in his leadership post and believes he properly handled an incident last September in Montana where a friend pulled out the lawmaker’s loaded handgun after a vehicle purchase went bad.
The top Republican in the Minnesota House was detained by Montana authorities last September when a deal to buy an antique truck soured and a friend accompanying him displayed the lawmaker’s gun, according to just-surfacing court records and a statement issued Friday. Rep. Kurt Daudt, the House minority leader, was briefly placed in handcuffs, and his friend was arrested and charged.
Fourth-grade students in Minnesota scored at the top nationally in math and above the national average in reading, according to national test results released Thursday.
A contingent of Minnesota legislators and convention bureau representatives is in Atlanta trying to convince lawmakers from elsewhere to put the Twin Cities in their travel plans. More than a dozen Minnesota lawmakers are at the National Conference of State Legislature’s summer summit.
Minnesota House Republicans have picked Rep. Kurt Daudt as their new minority leader.
Instead of sending Minnesota’s elected leaders into a frenzy of activity, the nation’s only state government shutdown has deepened the political paralysis that led them to their budget standoff. Top Democrats and Republicans have given no sign when they will talk again about how to resolve the stalemate.
Republican legislators think they have a way to keep Minnesotans on welfare from spending their benefits on booze, smokes and lottery tickets: They’d keep them from taking more than $20 in benefits in cash per month.