Monday will be the start of special session as the legislature convenes to finish the new two-year state budget. As you may recall from my previous newsletter, there are many troubling aspects of the budget framework agreed to by the Governor, Speaker of the House, and Senate Majority Leader. Over the next couple of weeks, I am ready to fight to make sure our new budget moves Minnesota forward and helps us recover from the pandemic.
If anyone has found the science that shows we are still in a state of emergency, can someone please let me know? Cases are plummeting and vaccinations continue to rise. Cleary there are zero reasons for Gov. Walz to keep his emergency powers any longer, but he is wrongly holding onto them to use in budget negotiations. His blatant executive overreach is shameful. We need the separation of powers that has been nonexistent this past year to finally be restored.
For those paying close attention, Walz did make an interesting comment yesterday at a press conference saying that the extension of his emergency powers that will be made next week “should lead us into – if not the final one – one of the final times we need to do that.” Let me clear up the options for you Governor: The emergency powers are ending. There should not even be a budget agreement until we end them.
Another important topic during budget negotiations must be ending the mask requirements for students. It is incredible that when the statewide mask mandate lifted, we did not include our children in it. The science showed us even earlier this year that the classroom was one of the safest places for our kids to be! I never thought I would be fighting for my children’s right to breathe, but I join parents across Minnesota in calling for all mask mandates for young people to end.