First, happy Mother’s Day to all Minnesota moms! I’ve never had a greater joy and honor in my life than being a mother, and hope you’ll spend time on Sunday with a mom in your life.
It’s hard to believe, but there’s just over one week left in the legislative session. Over the past few days, conference committees have formed with Representatives and Senators to iron out the differences in our larger bills. With that process underway, the House passed other provisions that I think can help our area and our state.
REAL ID Update
Just this week, the state received a federal assurance that our current IDs will be accepted for domestic flights until October 1, 2020. This gives us an extension to start issuing what’s known as a REAL ID. The state is working on implementing this new standard, and the extension gives us the needed time to become compliant. I know many have been worried in the past about our ability to board airplanes, but the state is working towards issuing these licenses before the new deadline.
Pornography's Connection to Human Trafficking
Yesterday, we passed a bill – on a unanimous vote of 127-0 – that would broaden the information collected by the Department of Public Safety to include "possession of pornographic work involving minors " and "harmful materials; dissemination and display of minors prohibited." The aim is to collect information related to human trafficking and its relation to pornography. It also directs money assessed in addition to any fine to local political subdivisions to help combat sexual exploitation of youth. Both human trafficking and pornography are so harmful to our communities. We must do all we can to protect the victims affected by them.
In my opinion, one of the most important issues we deal with in the legislature relates to the life of an unborn child. Yesterday, we passed a bill from my colleague, Rep. Abigail Whelan, that requires physicians to allow a patient to view an ultrasound if one is being performed for an abortion. If this bill becomes law, it will further empower women to make an informed decision regarding what could be a life-altering decision for her. Of course, if it saves even a few babies, it will be worth it.
This bill previously passed in the Senate, and passed in the House on a wide bipartisan vote of 79-48. I hope to see the governor support this measure and sign it into law.
Free Veteran Dental Care
Saturday, June 9 is an important day for our veterans. It's a chance for vets to receive free dental care at one of 450 Aspen Dental-branded practices in the US. Most veterans don’t receive dental benefits through the VA, so this is a time for our heroes to receive the care they need. For more information on the event, please click here.
Please Contact Me
Again, we’re just over a week from adjourning for the session. It’s more important than ever for you to contact my office and share your opinion on issues we’re discussing.
Enjoy the weekend and happy Mother’s Day!