Expectations are quite tempered around the Capitol for what might be accomplished during this short legislative session in an off-budget, election year.
But state Rep. Steve Drazkowski, R-Mazeppa, seems to think that’s reason enough to just call it a day on the Legislature’s work this year.
On Tuesday, he trolled his fellow members by making a motion to adjourn for the year. (I say trolled because Drazkowski introduced six bills on Tuesday, including a bonding request for a road reconstruction project in Zumbrota — does he not want those bills to pass or…?)
“People will ask, ‘What is there to accomplish here in this legislative session?’” Drazkowski said, launching into a diatribe against House DFLers and even getting a dig in at GOP House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt. “If the government is fully funded and operational, there’s no need for us to further meet.”
Seizing on House DFL priorities, which include expanded gun-control measures, Drazkowski said Democrats want to “take guns away from law-abiding Minnesota citizens, smothering their constitutional rights.”
Daudt rose to issue both a retort of Drazkowski and Democrats — a twofer, if I ever saw one: “What Rep. Drazkowski is wrong about is that state government isn’t fully funded — it’s more than fully funded. We have a $1.3 billion surplus and I do not want to miss the opportunity to right the wrong that happened in the last session.”
He continued: “If we go along with Rep. Drazkowski, Minnesotans will not get their money back.”
The fireworks between Drazkowski and Daudt are not new. Drazkowski and three other GOP members formally left the House GOP caucus in late 2018, forming the New House Repubublican Caucus. When the four members left the House GOP caucus, Drazkowski criticized Daudt’s leadership and hostility towards him, saying it prevented him from effectively representing his district.
The motion to adjourn sine die failed on a voice vote.