ST. PAUL – Minnesota House Republicans on Tuesday once again sought to end the executive powers Gov. Tim Walz first enacted in mid-March. For a fifth time, House Democrats blocked such an effort.
State Rep. Shane Mekeland, R-Clear Lake, said that, while urgent action may have been warranted four months ago in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the time has long passed to restore balance at the Capitol by involving the Legislature in decisions related to the situation.
“It’s disappointing the House majority refuses to participate in the decision-making process on COVID-19,” Mekeland said. “The situation we face today calls for thoughtful decisions, not unilateral mandates based on horribly flawed modeling the governor is basing his decisions on. We are now surpassing 120 days of our governor shutting down our state and people have had enough of his unilateral rule. Legislators have the ability to vote remotely under these circumstances, in real time, making the governor's emergency power’s completely unnecessary. It is time to restore balance at the Capitol so that we can manage this situation to protect our most vulnerable citizens while as we discuss how to safely re-open our state.”
While the Senate approved a similar measure on Monday, the first day of the current special session, Tuesday’s House move fell on party lines.