Session Adjourned, Education Associations Begin State Legislative Tour

With the 2024 session in the rearview mirror, attention now turns to the November general election.

Governor Walz has signed all of the bills presented to him by the legislature into law. All told, this was a very aggressive legislative biennium as the DFL trifecta said “yes” to almost everything progressive advocates brought forward. The 1 vote margin in the Senate held up despite the controversy created by Sen. Nicole Mitchell who is facing felony burglary charges. After using her vote to pass their agenda, DFL leaders are now asking for her resignation from the Senate. So far she is indicating she will not resign as she faces upcoming court dates and potential jail time for her alleged offenses.

In the meantime, candidates for state offices on the November ballot, i.e. the state House, need to file for office this week. The state Senate is not on the ballot, but we might see a Senate seat or two (or three) end up as special elections on the November ballot should a resignation take place, Sen. Mitchell’s seat being the one most in question. Sen. Kelly Morrison (DFL Minnetonka) is the DFL endorsed candidate for Congressional District 3 now that Dean Phillips is leaving office. She could hang onto her state Senate seat until being sworn in next January if she wins, but her colleagues back in Minnesota would appreciate defending her seat in November as opposed to a February special election, which could hold the state Senate locked at 33-33 until her seat is filled in that scenario.

The state House is really the play as DFLers are defending a 6-year majority. Speaker Hortman suffered one loss last week as Rep. Dave Lislegard (DFL Aurora) announced he’s not running again. Rep. Lislegard was the last DFL state Rep to represent a seat that Donald Trump won (quite handily). The GOP is gunning to pick up this seat in their quest to retake the House and break up the DFL trifecta in St. Paul. Still, there are a dozen or so seats each caucus is targeting for November. It’s a Presidential election year and the Biden-Trump rematch will drive much of the narrative. We won’t be speculating too much on elections, but we’ll add a few updates of note this summer and fall.

We’re looking forward to seeing many of you this week and next as MREA is on the road for the June legislative debriefing tour with MDE and our colleagues.