Gov Walz’s Sixth Extension of COVID Peacetime Emergency Follows Legislation’s Heated, Divided Vote

Governor Tim Walz extended Minnesota’s COVID-19 Peacetime Emergency for the sixth time after a heated, divided vote in the special legislative session. 
Walz stated in a press release that the coronavirus is still a danger to Minnesotans.

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Minnesota Lawmakers Pass Police Accountability Package

The Minnesota Legislature passed a broad slate of police accountability measures early Tuesday that includes a ban on neck restraints like the one that was used on George Floyd before his death in Minneapolis.

The package also bans chokeholds and so-called warrior-style training, which critics say promotes excessive force. It imposes a duty to intercede on officers who see a colleague using excessive force. It changes rules on the use of force to stress the sanctity of life. It makes changes in arbitration rules affecting police unions. Officers will get more training on dealing with people with mental health issues and autism. The measure also creates a new advisory council for the state board that licenses officers.

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Walz Must Answer Abuse of Emergency Powers Charge Over COVID-19 Orders in Lawsuit

Over a dozen Minnesota state legislators have joined ranks with the Free Minnesota Small Business Coalition to stop what they argue are Governor Tim Walz’s unconstitutional abuses of power. A hearing in the case will take place, July 16, 2020, in Minnesota District Court.

Minneapolis attorney Erick Kaardal of Mohrman, Kaardal & Erickson, P.A. is representing the group in a lawsuit against Governor Walz, whom they are charging with overstepping his bounds and interfering in the legislative process, violating civil liberties of legislators, business owners, and the 5.6 million Minnesotans.

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DFL Targets State Senate Republicans on Police Reform in New Ad Campaign

The Minnesota DFL Party launched a new ad campaign this week targeting key Republican state senators who are accused of “standing in the way of passing real police reform.”

Jason Lewis, a Republican candidate for U.S. Senate, said in a recent interview that Democrats don’t “want reform” so much as they “want a political issue.”

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‘Train Wreck’ Special Session Cost Estimated $108,000

The Minnesota Legislature’s recent special session ended with no major accomplishments, but the eight-day session will still cost taxpayers an estimated $108,000.

The special session concluded on June 20 after Republicans in the Senate and Democrats in the House failed to reach an agreement on police reform legislation, the allocation of federal coronavirus relief funds, and other leftover business from the regular session, such as a borrowing package for public infrastructure projects.

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Resolution to End Walz’s Peacetime Emergency Fails to Pass, But Receives Bipartisan Support

Yet another resolution to end Gov. Tim Walz’s peacetime emergency declaration was rejected Friday, but this time the proposal received bipartisan support in both the House and Senate.

The resolution passed the Republican-controlled Senate in a vote of 38-29, with three Democratic senators joining Republicans in voting to end the governor’s emergency powers, which first took effect March 13 in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

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Minnesota Legislature Will Meet on As Needed Basis for Next 30 Days, Bars and Restaurants Ordered Shut

The Minnesota Legislature will be meeting on an “on-call” basis for the next 30 days, leaders announced Monday morning.

During that time, much of their legislative work will focus on responding to the coronavirus outbreak, which reached 54 confirmed cases in the state as of Monday afternoon.

“Over the next few weeks, the Minnesota Legislature will continue to work, but by alternative means. We expect to operate efficiently and safely to aid Minnesotans with COVID-19 preparedness and response, and to continue our work to address other pressing needs of the state,” leaders of both the House and Senate said in a joint statement.

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Minnesota Gov. Walz Says Republicans and Business Leaders Will Beg Him for a Gas Tax Next Year

  Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz said he expects businesses and Republican legislators to suggest a gas tax to him next year. The governor, a member of the Democratic Farmer-Labor Party, made the remarks Friday during an interview with Mary Lahammer on Twin Cities Public TV. The Minnesota Senate Republican Caucus…

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Divided Minnesota Legislature Reaches Agreement on Major Budget Areas

by Bethany Blankley   The nation’s only divided legislature has reached agreements on all of its remaining budget disputes, Gov. Tim Waltz and leaders of the Senate Republican and House Democratic majorities said Thursday. They reached a compromise on the biggest part of the budget during Thursday’s special session –…

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Keith Ellison Likely to be Replaced By Candidate With Equally Controversial Past in Minnesota’s ‘Anti-Israel Seat’

Ellison, Omar

Minnesota State Rep. Ilhan Omar is still serving out her first term as the first Somali-American legislator, but she is poised to inherit what some have called the “anti-Israel seat” in the U.S. House of Representatives. Minnesota’s Fifth Congressional District has remained a Democratic stronghold since the 1970’s, and Omar…

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