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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Cal Bahr (R)

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Saturday, March 27, 2021

"The people always have some champion whom they set over them and nurse into greatness.... This and no other is the root from which a tyrant springs; when he first appears he is a protector."
Plato (c. 427-347 B.C.), The Republic, Book VIII

COVID-19 in Minnesota


vaccine update graphic

So, like pretty much all of the other predictions Gov Walz has publicized about the COVID-19 pandemic, the schedule for vaccine distribution is significantly ahead of where they thought they would be and providers across the state are pressuring for broader eligibility requirements to give them more flexibility with available dosing. You can see more of the distribution summaries here: Vaccine Data

Due to the saturation level of distribution in some areas of the state in the targeted eligible groups, Gov. Walz announced that they are opening up the vaccine eligibility to all those 16 years of age and up starting March 30th. This does not change the priority rankings for those scheduling and receiving vaccines. It does allow providers who do not have higher ranked individuals waiting to distribute doses to those who wish to partake. In higher density populations, it could still be hard to get an appointment for the next several weeks but there are spots opening up for those willing to travel a bit.

Below are some resources that may assist you and your family in scheduling your vaccines should you wish to and have not yet been able to. 

  • Sign up for the COVID-19 Vaccine Connector to get updates on vaccine opportunities and to be entered into the random slection process for the state's Community Vaccination Program sites.
  • Connect online with your health care provider.
  • Connect online with your pharmacy.
  • Search for a COVID-19 vaccine appointment near you by using the CDC’s Vaccine Finder.
  • Use the Vaccine Locator Map to find local vaccine providers in your area.

The Walz administration anticipates that every eligible Minnesotan who wants the vaccine should be able to get one by the end of May.

Given the broad distribution they are reporting, Walz has also deigned to allow schools to provide for in-person proms and graduations in new guidance from the MN Dept. of Health. There are significant restrictions on the activities and the numbers allowed in groups with no 'inter-mixing' with others outside your group. Additionally, things like no food or drink can be served after 11pm and food only in designated areas. Larger schools are now in the planning process for how they can find available space to provide the distances required and methods for determining 'pod' designations.

It does help that there have been additional adjustments made in restrictions for businesses and entertainment facilities that will be effective in some areas on April 1st and other areas on April 15th. This allows for greater capacity in entertainment venues - both indoor and outdoor - as well as gyms and 'non-essential' services. You can find more details about these directives here: Stay Safe MN.

Unfortunately, despite several more votes in the MN House & Senate, Gov Walz still maintains the dictatorial position designated by his proclaimed Emergency. More than a year has gone by since he instituted this position and none of the conditions that were in his stated rational at the time currently exist. As a state, we are well positioned to manage any localized outbreaks, we have enough supplies, our hospitals are not over-run, and the dire predictions of deaths in the 10s of thousands which necessitated purchasing a state-operated building to serve as an overflow morgue NEVER materialized. In fact, that building was never suitable for occupation, and has never been used for anything other than supply storage - some of which was damaged due to a leaky roof.

The time has long since passed where we should let Minnesotans manage their own communities and address what needs they have and get the state out of the way.

South Dakota Welcomes You!

The previous discussion leads to this next one. It's time to have a serious discussion about 'disenfranchisement' in Minnesota.

Rep. Jeremy Munson and I have introduced HF 2423 - a constitutional amendment establishing a process for a Minnesota county to request approval to be excluded from the established area of the state. In other words, we have introduced a bill to allow counties to secede.

The obvious jokes of becoming part of South Dakota aside (which Gov. Noem has already responded that we're all welcome), we want to start a discussion about how does the population of a state move forward together when a significant portion feels completely ignored by the state leadership - where mandates from St. Paul come down that only benefit a portion and are a disproportionate detriment to the rest?

We are at a crossroads in this state where we have to make our voices heard by whatever means law and the constitution provides. It is our responsibility, our privilege and our inherent birthright as citizens.

How Do You Feel About Visiting the Capitol?

Capitol Area Closed Graphic

I know that I would love to have the Capitol back open for my constituents and the rest of the state to properly access their government leaders as the constitution intended. And along with that, I think they should have access to the historical parts of Capitol Mall that were put in place for future generations to learn from - for good or ill. But right now, those things are not possible.

Lt Governor Flanagan chairs the committee tasked with tearing down or erecting statues at our State's Capitol. Please take this important survey to express your opinion on the Columbus and Lief Erikson statues, as well as whether you believe the Capitol should be reopened to the public.

Please take this survey and share with your friends!

Choose Freedom,


Cal Bahr
State Representative, 31B

Coming up Next Week

  • Next week is Easter Break. There will be no public meetings held, virtual or otherwise, no floor sessions. As such, I won't be distributing a weekly update to tell you nothing happened!
  • AFTER the break, committees will begin to 'mark up' Omnibus spending bills in the various jurisdictions. This process invariably leads to bloated monuments to bureaucracy that try to buy off any (or all) legislators with new and continuing government programs. This year is especially difficult due to the influx of billions of dollars of federal one-time funds which still come from the taxpayer. Can you smell bacon?
  • I have received a lot of calls and emails from my community about HF 604 - the mask mandate. Let me assure you that I do not support the mandatory wearing of masks and will be voting against any bill that would require you to wear one.


We are still attempting to provide regular contact remotely regardless of our COVID-19 restrictions so If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us - please email my Legislative Assistant, Barbara, at

Watch the Minnesota House on Public TV

Video: Streaming Website. Also you can watch committees and Floor Sessions on YouTube.