Michelle Griffith

Michelle Griffith

Michelle Griffith covers Minnesota politics and policy for the Reformer, with a focus on marginalized communities. Most recently she was a reporter with The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead in North Dakota where she covered state and local government and Indigenous issues. For two years she was also a corps member with Report for America, a national nonprofit that places journalists in local newsrooms and news deserts. She lives in St. Paul and likes to knit and watch documentaries in her free time.

Scott Jensen’s education plan cuts funding for Minnesota schools, promotes school choice

By: - August 30, 2022

Republican nominee for Minnesota governor Scott Jensen wants to convert low-performing public schools to charter or private schools, ban so-called “critical race theory” and crack down on truancy with the help of law enforcement.  Jensen unveiled his sweeping education plan at the State Fair on Tuesday, which would drastically alter Minnesota schools and reduce funding […]

Political divisions are on display at the Great Minnesota Get-Together

By: and - August 30, 2022

A mother crouched down to pin “Walz Failed” buttons on each of her children near Republican gubernatorial nominee Scott Jensen’s campaign booth. Outside the Miracle of Birth barn, fairgoers cooled themselves with “Walz Failed” fans. Overhead, a plane circled every few minutes with a banner screaming “Walz Failed.”  The Republican message to voters was ubiquitous […]

Scott Jensen’s proposal to eliminate income tax would benefit Minnesota’s wealthiest

By: - August 26, 2022

Republican nominee for governor Scott Jensen wants to eliminate the state income tax, which would create a $15 billion hole in the state budget every year.  The income tax comprises a little more than half of state general fund revenue, which means eliminating it would require draconian cuts to programs like schools and Medical Assistance, […]

Jensen: Yes, I was comparing COVID-19 restrictions to Nazism

By: - August 23, 2022

Republican gubernatorial candidate Scott Jensen on Tuesday said his past comparison of COVID-19 public health policies to Nazism was “legitimate.” Back in April, Jensen said the steps taken to curb COVID-19 spread were comparable to Adolf Hitler’s rise to power, citing Kristallnacht — two nights in November when violent mobs destroyed synagogues, businesses and homes. […]

Ellison issues consumer alert about Minnesota crisis pregnancy centers

By: - August 23, 2022

Minnesota crisis pregnancy centers target low-income people and provide misleading information about abortion and contraception, according to Attorney General Keith Ellison. Ellison on Tuesday issued a consumer alert for Minnesotans warning that crisis pregnancy centers tout comprehensive health care but actually push pregnant people away from abortion — often through deceiving messaging and methods. Minnesota […]

Scott Jensen likens COVID-19 public health policies to Kristallnacht, Nazism

By: - August 22, 2022

Republican nominee for governor Scott Jensen is set to appear Tuesday at a Republican Jewish Coalition event.  He may want to clarify to the group some remarks he made in April in which he off-handedly compared recent public health policies to Hitler’s rise.  Jensen was speaking to a group called MaskOffMN, which calls the government’s […]

Republican Senate candidate says people may ‘have to vote with bullets’

By: - August 18, 2022

In a speech about voting and trust in elections, a Minnesota Senate candidate said people need to “grow teeth” by “voting with a ballot before we have to vote with bullets.”  Stephen Lowell, the GOP-endorsed candidate for Minnesota Senate District 52, said Republicans should vote in droves, comparing the turnout needed to the number of […]

Attorney general: Minnesota reaches ninth settlement with opioid company in 2.5 years

By: - August 17, 2022

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison on Wednesday announced another settlement with an opioid company that will further swell the state’s opioid settlement pool, which is now worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Over the past two and a half years, the attorney general’s office says it has reached nine settlements with opioid companies — the […]

With number of essential workers up, hazard pay is down

By: - August 16, 2022

When the divided Minnesota Legislature and Gov. Tim Walz came to a $500 milion agreement on compensating frontline workers for putting their health at risk during the pandemic, they estimated that 667,000 eligibible workers would apply. That meant each worker — among them child care workers, prison guards, meat processors, etc. — would receive $750. […]

‘I’m so thankful’: Dept. of Corrections halts effort to reincarcerate 18 people on COVID-19 release

By: - August 15, 2022

The Minnesota Department of Corrections reversed itself and will no longer order 18 people on COVID-19 medical release to return to prison.

Minnesota Iron Range Sen. David Tomassoni dies at 69

By: - August 12, 2022

Minnesota Sen. David Tomassoni, 69, died on Thursday evening after announcing last year he was diagnosed with ALS.

Judge temporarily blocks Corrections Dept. from ordering people back to prison from medical release

By: - August 11, 2022

A Ramsey County District Court judge on Thursday granted reprieve to 18 people on medical release from prison, blocking the state Department of Corrections from forcing them to return — at least for the moment.