DFL Senate Minority Tom Bakk said the purpose of the group is to push one of the governor’s top priorities — and to leave a legacy for his eight grandchildren.
During the annual “Session Priorities” dinner of the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce Wednesday, a panel of legislative leaders was asked to give one-word answers to a series of questions by host Tom Hauser.
The disconnect at the Capitol is not so much about political philosophy, but over what even constitutes compromise these days — what “halfway” looks like.
Taxes, bonding, and the fallout from a sexual harassment scandal are all expected to be addressed during the upcoming session.
The 2017 Legislature will feature new challenges for lawmakers, including a looming governor’s race and ongoing tensions between the state’s executive and legislative branches.
Lost amid the meltdown was the fact the Legislature passed a supplemental budget bill and tax cut proposal with overwhelming support.
This is one of the strangest end-of-session negotiations in recent memory.
Both of the governor’s proposals raise $600 million a year for transportation over the next decade. But one includes a gas-tax increase, a non-starter for Republicans.
Minnesota Sen. Majority Leader Tom Bakk is trying to mend relationships in a DFL caucus recently divided over his leadership.
Legislators also passed a measure that will distribute $258 million in refunds to businesses that contribute to Minnesota’s $1.6 billion unemployment insurance trust fund.
Though Minnesota lawmakers have made progress on the issue this week, the nature of the dispute isn’t the only sign that the rest of the session could be a slog.
“The reality is some of the stuff that was agreed to in those final hours really flies in the face of our values as DFLers,” Martin said in an interview with MinnPost.
While he wouldn’t talk specific figures, Senate minority leader David Hann said a 2016 bill wouldn’t just contain tax credits, but actual tax reductions.
“A little over half of our caucus is quite concerned about the leadership right now,” one DFL senator said of Majority Leader Tom Bakk. “We are doing a performance review, let’s call it.”
The one-day session stretched from Friday morning into early Saturday and averts a partial government shutdown. It also exposed some serious rifts among Democrats.
The urban-rural, moderate-conservative rift is old hat for Republicans, but this year it has beset Senate DFLers.
The one-day session has begun, despite indications that the passage of the agriculture and environment bill remains in question.
Despite the most recent progress, no date has been set yet for the session. Here’s what has to take place before legislators can meet.
Not every detail is settled on what lawmakers will address in a special session, but leaders say they’re close. Here’s where the outstanding issues currently stand.
What may be most surprising about the upcoming special session isn’t that it might be over in a day. It’s that it will cover such a wide variety of issues.