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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Kaohly Vang Her (DFL)

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Legislative Update - The 2024 Legislative Session

Friday, June 14, 2024
New Banner - 2024

Dear Neighbors, 

The Minnesota Legislature is adjourned, St. Paul Schools are out, and at this point I’m counting down the days to the State Fair - summer is here! 

The final weeks of the 2024 Legislative Session were jam-packed, and the final days even more so as we did our best to deliver the most for Minnesotans under the first DFL trifecta in a decade. 

With the dust settled, and some much-needed rest, it’s clear looking back that our work these last two years will have a generational impact on our state. A Minnesota Miracle 2.0! I’m incredibly proud of our work, and immensely honored for the job you entrusted me to do in the Minnesota House of Representatives.

As with all legislative sessions, we didn’t accomplish everything we set out to do - more on that - but we did provide historic investments throughout our state budget, and enacted policies aimed at lifting up Minnesotans and ensuring our community and state is an exemplary place to live, work, and raise a family. 

Here’s an update on our work at the Capitol, and what I’ve been up to:


What Passed?

Last year the Legislature passed our major two-year budget bills, and this year the House built on that progress by passing small supplemental budgets alongside more substantial policy changes in major committee areas. Working alongside the Governor and our Senate counterparts, we reached final agreements on all major budget bills, many of which have already been signed into law. 

You can find nonpartisan summaries about the final agreements here: Transportation, Labor and Housing, Energy and Agriculture, Public Safety and Judiciary, Commerce and Cannabis, Jobs and Economic Development, Environment and Natural Resources, K-12 Education, Higher Education, Human Services, Health, and Elections

These are all great bills, but as a member of the Legacy, Health, and State Government committees, I’m especially proud of our efforts there. 

We also passed a gun violence prevention bill that includes tougher penalties for straw purchasers and a ban on binary triggers, a bill that will increase wages for rideshare drivers while keeping companies operating in Minnesota, a health occupational licensure and scoping bill, legislation improving our child welfare services and addressing racial disparities, and a tenants’ rights package

I have the privilege to work alongside incredible legislators from all corners of the state, and while any one of them is a leader in their own right, I especially want to give a shout out to our People of Color and Indigenous (POCI) Caucus. All of the accomplishments I mentioned above would not have been possible without these champions of Minnesotans. I have the honor of serving in the most diverse legislature in Minnesota’s history, with POCI members chairing committees, authoring key legislation, and providing a voice to those too often left behind when it comes to this work.

POCI Caucus

We’re building a better future for ALL Minnesotans, and that’s only possible when you bring a diverse group of voices to the table. I can’t wait to see what this group accomplishes next!


The Equal Rights Amendment

In a legislative session, there is only so much time. Bills - really good bills - need proper vetting in the committee process, and like I mentioned above, it’s important to bring various voices to the table to discuss legislation. This can take months, even years, and often things aren’t passed in a single session. We accomplished so many things these last two years, but there’s still more to do. Sadly, the Equal Rights Amendment was a crucial bill that didn’t cross the finish line in time. 

That’s not to say there wasn’t an incredible amount of progress made this year. 

After hours of filibustered debate from Republicans over multiple days, the Minnesota House passed the ERA in the early hours of Sunday, May 19th. This gave the Minnesota Senate less than 10 hours to pass a bill that took us days. There simply wasn’t enough time.

ERA Deabate

This isn’t a movement that’s going away. Codifying these protections into the constitution is absolutely necessary and urgent. On our watch, we let a GOP congress refuse to confirm supreme court justices during Obama’s administration, we allowed an extremist Trump presidency to appoint conservative justices, and we watched while those justices lied about their belief that Roe did not need to be codified because it was the law of the land. We now know overturning Roe was not the end goal. 

It was just the beginning of the personhood movement by ultra conservatives. Overturning Roe opened the door to strike down other landmark cases that guarantee rights to marginalized groups such as BIPOC and LGBTQ+ individuals. States across the country have banned gender affirming care, access to medically necessary procedures and care for trans individuals, banned abortion, interfered with infertility and IVF, and criminalized medical professionals who provide reproductive health care for women traveling from states with no access.


We have seen case law and statues change. Case law and statues are subject to political winds and the makeup of the political leanings of judges. Codifying equal rights into Minnesota's Constitution will guarantee rights will not hinge on these changes.

The work here isn’t done - it won’t be until we pass this bill and give Minnesotans the opportunity to make the Equal Rights Amendment the law of the land. While it’s disheartening that it didn’t happen this year, I am dedicated to getting the job done. 


What’s Next?

Now, with session over, I’m looking forward to being back in our corner of St. Paul full-time! I’m sure I’ll see many of you around the neighborhood, and though I won’t be in my Capitol office as much, I always encourage you to contact me and my staff with any questions, comments, or concerns you may have. 

Since the session ended, I’ve been busy with events across our community. Recently, I attended the Transforming Generations 2024 Pride Fest, which was truly special. I’m not sure I can accurately capture what it felt like to be in a space that embraces LGBTQ+ in the AAPI community. We live at the intersection of our identity. We do not get to choose if our race, sex, or gender matters more or less. We are all of it all at once.

Pride Fest
Last week, I had the opportunity to present my high school intern, Jackie, with the Great River Montessori School Blue Heron Award at her school. Jackie is bright, curious, and articulate. She embodies all of the potential the world has to offer. I wish Jackie continued success on her future endeavors. She will be missed.
Blue Heron Award

I also attended the Strive Together 2024 Policy Summit in Washington DC for the Saint Paul Promise Neighborhood, which holds a special place in my heart. When it was first established, I was on the founding advisory board. As a stay-at-home mom raising two young kiddos, I believed in this 2 generation, wrap-around service approach to addressing disparities in education outcomes. Nearly 15 years later I had the honor of carrying the bill to fund promise neighborhoods across the state.

Thank you StriveTogether for allowing me to share this work with educators, stakeholders, and partners from across the country at this summit. The other panelists were inspiring and the participants of the summit encouraging. I look forward to continuing this work with Minnesota’s education partnership coalition.


While I typically welcome visitors at my office, I want to note that we’re moving this summer to the Centennial Office Building across the Capitol Mall, as the State Office Building is renovated for the next few years - making the House’s offices more accessible, safe, and open to the public. 

Please feel free to reach out to my office at 651-296-8799 or, and you’ll hear back from me or my Legislative Assistant, Emma. You can also follow along on my official Facebook page, and subscribe to these regular emails if you haven’t already. 

Thank you again for the incredible honor of representing our community. I look forward to seeing you this summer!



Kaohly Vang Her

State Representative