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Senate’s legal bills in Brodkorb case approaching $200,000

The latest invoice covers $90,000 in legal work provided this fall.

The legal bills related to the firing of Michael Brodkorb, former communications director for the Republican caucus of the Minnesota Senate, are now nearing $200,000.

The latest invoice from the Larkin, Hoffman, Daly and Lindgren law firm is for $90,000 in work provided this fall.

The Senate already has paid $103,000 for earlier work related to Brodkorb suing the Senate> He claims his dismissal, for his affair with former Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch, constitutes gender discrimination. Brodkorb maintains that female legislative employees involved in similar relationships were not fired but were offered transfers to other positions.

“To say I’m aghast would be an understatement” was the reaction of DFL Sen. Dick Cohen of St. Paul when he was told of the total legal expenses. Cohen is a member of the Senate Rules Committee, which will meet Thursday to consider payment of the bill. “We haven’t even done any protracted work yet,” he said.

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Most of the legal work has been procedural in nature.  The federal judge hearing the case, Arthur Boylan, has yet to rule on whether to dismiss some of the motions.

It’s expected that the rules committee, with its Republican majority, will authorize payment of the current bill.

Control, however, shifts to the Democrats in January.  After that, Cohen said, “I don’t know what resolution there’s going to be moving forward.”