Skip to main content Skip to office menu Skip to footer
Capital IconMinnesota Legislature

Legislative News and Views - Rep. Walter Hudson (R)

Back to profile

Legislative update

Friday, February 3, 2023

Thank you to everyone who attended the series of town hall meetings Sen. Lucero, Rep. Novotny and I conducted across District 30A. The input provided by constituents was well received and we are grateful so many people took time from their busy lives to share their thoughts. Above is a photo of Sen. Lucero and me meeting with constituents at the Albertville event.

Dear Neighbor,

Greetings from the House, where Democrats in the majority continue using their slim grasp of power to push their small-group activists’ extreme agenda on all Minnesotans. There were Republican candidates supported by 49 percent of the population, yet Democrats in St. Paul are treating it as a full-on mandate, projecting radical changes on all of us.

The top priorities for House Democrats to start this session included passing the nation’s most extreme abortion policy and approving a “Blackout Bill” energy package that increases consumer energy prices, reduces power reliability and ultimately compromises safety. Now, this week, House Democrats passed a bill allowing undocumented immigrants to obtain the same Class D Minnesota driver’s license as Minnesotans who choose not to apply for Real ID or an enhanced driver’s license.

There are numerous concerns with the Democrats’ Universal Driver’s License Bill (H.F. 4). First, this bill threatens to undermine election integrity by failing to include “not for voting purposes” language on the new license. This could create scores of potential new, and illegal, voters with an estimated 81,000 undocumented immigrants would be eligible for this driver’s license. The potential for abuse of state government programs also exists, and more.

House Republicans offered numerous amendments to H.F. 4 that would uphold the integrity of our elections and foster confidence in our system. This includes provisions House Democrats accepted from House Republicans in previous iterations of their Universal Driver’s License bills that ultimately were not enacted. A simple indicator noting this ID is not for voting purposes, for example, was a previously agreed-upon component.

But, now, House Democrats are turning the Capitol into Burger King: They’re going to have it their way. Or, worse yet, we’re all going to have it their way and House Democrats aren’t even trying to hide it. During discussion of H.F. 4 on the House floor, the Democrat author of the bill flatly stated this is what the “community decided.”

Come again? The community? What community? This appears to be a fancy way of saying fringe, left-wing activists are shaping state policy that is out of touch with most Minnesotans.

This does not bode well for residents of our state the rest of this session. In fact, maybe the biggest potential concern over H.F. 4 is how it could serve as an accessory to a separate bill House Democrats are moving through the process. That bill, H.F. 3, expands absentee balloting without including proper safeguards. It may be clear to whom the state is mailing an absentee ballot, but this bill contains no verification of exactly who is returning said ballot to the box. I’m sure we’ll delve into that bill in greater detail as it moves through the House.

In other news:

Gun bills

This morning, the House Public Safety Finance & Policy Committee, on which I serve, will conduct hearings for numerous gun-control bills. I’m a hard “no” on each of them because the consistent theme is they would do more to burden law-abiding citizens than actually address violent crime that remains abnormally high in Minnesota.

The bills scheduled for hearings today include:

  • HF 14 (Universal Background Checks): Criminal background checks required for firearm transfers, and grounds modified for disqualification of transferee permit.
  • HF 15 (Red Flag Law): Red Flag Gun Confiscation Orders: Law enforcement and family members enabled to petition a court to prohibit people from possessing firearms if they pose a significant danger to themselves or others by possessing a firearm, and money appropriated.
  • HF 396: Safe storage of firearms and ammunition required, locking device required to be included in each firearm transfer, and criminal penalties imposed.
  • HF 601: Lost and stolen firearms required to be reported promptly to law enforcement.

I look forward to participating in this hearing. It will be interesting to see how House Democrats respond to common sense and reason when presented. Watch for more on this subject down the line as well. Here’s a link to the committee’s meetings page and a button to stream the hearing if you are so inclined.

Ford/Garza update

Many of us have been appalled to learn justice has not been served in the case regarding the senseless deaths of Dalton Ford and Tyler Garza. The person who killed them has merely been placed on juvenile probation. I am working on a bill to remedy situations such as this and will share more when that bill is in final form. For now, click here for more about this story.

Until next time, have a good weekend and please stay in touch.