The debate into whether Minnesota Governor Tim Walz should be allowed to keep the peacetime emergency orders in place continued into Tuesday as the Minnesota Legislature entered day two of their special session. The hot topic was Walz and his request to keep the peacetime emergency orders in place.
Following a 36-31 vote Monday by members of the Minnesota State Senate to end the peacetime emergency, Tuesday set up a showdown in the Minnesota House, one that would prove to be tough. While the Republicans hold majority in the Minnesota Senate, the DFL party holds the majority in the Minnesota House of Representatives. That would provide for a battle—one in which many sources said the DFL would likely not follow suit.
Representative Paul Marquart, who represents Minnesota’s District 4B, tells WZFG News that all medical capabilities, in terms of ICU capacity, PPE, ventilators and testing are currently being met.
“At this point we no longer need quick emergency action,” Marquart tells WZFG News.
He calls for his fellow legislative members to be “more involved with decision making.”
“This is why I voted yes to basically end the governor’s emergency powers,” Marquart says.
Kent Eken, Minnesota State Senator who is also representing Minnesota’s District 4B, says he believes a more regional approach is needed in Minnesota.
“We need an approach that recognizes and reflects the different situations in different areas of the state,” he says. “A metro-driven ‘one size fits all’ approach doesn’t work in Greater Minnesota. We aren’t Minneapolis and we should not be treated as such.”
Earlier, on Monday, Walz signed an executive order extending the COVID-19 peacetime emergency, saying, “COVID-19 continues to present an unprecedented and rapidly evolving challenge to our state.”
Late Tuesday night, Representative Jerry Hertaus, representing District 33A, tweeted, “The Minnesota House Democrat majority voted moments ago to deny the full legislature a vote on the extension of Emergency Powers to Governor Walz’s statutory obligation to call the legislature into session under Minnesota Statute 12.31 for the purpose of voting yes or no.”
Eken tells WZFG News that “it looks likely they will not be taking a direct vote on whether to remove these powers. This means the powers will continue for another 30 days.”
This is a developing news story. Stay tuned to AM1100TheFlag.com and AM 1100 The Flag WZFG for updates on this developing news story.