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.
‘I’m so thankful’: Dept. of Corrections halts effort to reincarcerate 18 people on COVID-19 release
By: Michelle Griffith - 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: Michelle Griffith - 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: Michelle Griffith - 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.
Brad Finstad to be sworn into U.S. House on Friday
By: Michelle Griffith - August 11, 2022
Republican Brad Finstad will be sworn into the U.S. House on Friday after winning a special election in Minnesota’s 1st Congressional District.
Walz: Jensen’s COVID-19 stance is ‘killing people’
By: Michelle Griffith - August 10, 2022
Gov. Tim Walz on Wednesday said in an MPR interview that his Republican opponent Scott Jensen's COVID-19 stance is 'killing people.'
Inmates file suit after state orders them back to prison from COVID-19 release
By: Michelle Griffith - August 9, 2022
Two inmates within the Minnesota correctional system filed a lawsuit Tuesday against the state’s Department of Corrections, seeking to stop the agency from ordering 18 inmates back into prison. During the pandemic, the DOC released 158 inmates because of their susceptibility to COVID-19 due to underlying health conditions, through a conditional medical release program, which […]
Minnesota primaries are tomorrow. Here’s what you need to know.
By: Michelle Griffith and Deena Winter - August 8, 2022
Minnesotans who haven’t voted in the primary election have a final chance Tuesday, with a number of high-profile races including a DFL primary challenge for U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar from former Minneapolis City Council Member Don Samuels; a DFL primary challenge for U.S. Rep. Betty McCollum from progressive activist Amane Badhasso; a winnowing of the […]
Minnesota released some inmates who were susceptible to COVID-19. Now, 18 have to return.
By: Michelle Griffith - August 8, 2022
Eighteen Minnesota inmates who were released because of their health conditions now have to return to prison.
Traverse County Attorney attempts to intervene in Minnesota abortion rights ruling
By: Michelle Griffith - August 5, 2022
A county attorney in west-central Minnesota filed a motion Thursday to appeal a ruling that strengthened Minnesota abortion rights. Traverse County Attorney Matthew Franzese — through the law firm the Thomas More Society — said the motion to intervene comes after Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison announced last week that he will not appeal a […]
COVID, crime dominate first gubernatorial forum at Farmfest
By: Michelle Griffith - August 3, 2022
MORGAN, MINN. — Gov. Tim Walz and his Republican opponent Scott Jensen shared a stage for the first time Wednesday at Farmfest, where they debated COVID-19, school spending and the government’s role in the lives of Minnesotans. In an audience full of farmers and ag industry workers, crowds loudly cheered for Jensen when he criticized […]
Becker School Board delays vote on policy banning ‘inherently divisive concepts’
By: Michelle Griffith - August 1, 2022
The controversy comes amid a wave of school boards and states passing similar policies and laws aimed at discussions of race and sexual orientation.
Ellison declines to appeal state abortion rights ruling, cementing expanded access in Minnesota
By: Michelle Griffith - July 28, 2022
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison said on Thursday that he will not appeal a judge’s ruling that expanded abortion access in the state, effectively strengthening rights for people to receive the procedure in Minnesota with fewer restrictions. A district court judge earlier this month struck down laws related to parental notification, hospitalization, mandated physician care […]