By Mary McGuire

ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — With just one week to go until the start of the legislative session, there is still confusion and controversy surrounding our state’s new lieutenant governor.

A judge dismissed a lawsuit challenging Republican Michelle Fischbach.

After Al Franken resigned earlier this year, Tina Smith was selected to take over his seat as a U.S. Senator. Under the Minnesota Constitution, as president of the state Senate, Fischbach became lieutenant governor.

She said she would serve in both roles and was sued in Ramsey County.

Now that the lawsuit was thrown out, major questions still remain over what will happen when things get underway in St. Paul.

Fischbach automatically took over as lieutenant governor after her predecessor, Tina Smith, was appointed to the U.S. Senate.

A group of constituents sued the lawmaker, saying she can’t represent them in the state Senate while doing both jobs.

The judge dismissed the case, saying it’s impossible to know how she’ll do until the legislative session begins, one week from Tuesday.

Political expert and Hamline professor David Schultz thinks this case is far from over. He believes it will make it all the way to the Supreme Court, adding more drama to an already dramatic political climate.

“It’s going to be a very bumpy ride … the ingredients for a highly contentious session are there,” Schultz said.

Schultz believes another lawsuit will be filed shortly after that or when Fischbach casts her first vote in the Senate.

The new session gets underway Tuesday.

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