Minnesota Republicans Introduce Bill to Strip Funding from Libraries That Host ‘Drag Queen Story Hour’

A bill introduced Monday in the Minnesota House would pull public funding from libraries that host “drag queen story hour” performances for children.

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State Reps Ask Two More Minnesota Counties to Become Second Amendment Sanctuaries

Republican state lawmakers have asked two more Minnesota counties to become Second Amendment “sanctuary” jurisdictions, which are areas that refuse to enforce gun control measures.

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Minnesota DHS Commissioner Says Agency Isn’t ‘In Crisis’ During House Hearing

Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) Commissioner Jodi Harpstead presented her “90-day report” to state lawmakers Monday morning, but the two-hour hearing before the House Health and Human Services Committee may have produced more questions than answers.

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Email Appears to Show DHS Wanted to Cut Check to Child Care Center Connected to ‘Taliban Official’

Officials in Minnesota’s Department of Human Services (DHS) allegedly wanted to cut a new check to a child care center that had its bank account frozen by the Office of Foreign Asset Control because of the account owner’s association “with a Taliban official,” emails obtained by a state representative show.

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Minnesota House GOP Calls on Democrats to Hold Hearings on DHS During Upcoming ‘Mini-Session’

Minnesota House Republicans are calling on their Democratic colleagues to hold hearings on the ongoing turmoil at the Department of Human Services during an upcoming legislative “mini-session.”

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Commissioner Tony Lourey Abruptly Resigns from ‘Dumpster Fire’ at Minnesota DHS

  Minnesota Department of Human Services Commissioner Tony Lourey abruptly resigned Monday, making him the third top DHS official to step down in just a few short days. “I believe a new leader is necessary to best execute your vision for human services and continue the critical work of improving…

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Investigation Into Minnesota Inspector General Carolyn Ham Hasn’t Even Started Yet

  Minnesota Department of Human Services Inspector General Carolyn Ham was placed on “investigative leave” in March, but reporters learned Friday that the investigation into Ham’s conduct hasn’t even started yet. Ham, however, continues to be paid while she’s on leave and has earned $42,000 since her leave first began,…

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Minnesota House DFL Voted Down Amendments to Make Sure Financial Aid Goes Only to Legal Residents

  The DFL-controlled Minnesota House voted down two amendments to its omnibus higher education finance bill last week that would have ensured state financial aid goes only to legal residents. One of those amendments was introduced by Rep. Mary Franson (R-Alexandria) and would have made sure that only legal residents…

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Minnesota House DFL Rejects Amendment to Crack Down on Female Genital Mutilation

  The DFL-controlled Minnesota House blocked an amendment to its omnibus public safety bill that would have expanded the criminal penalties for subjecting children to the practice of female genital mutilation. The amendment was offered by Rep. Mary Franson (R-Alexandria) during a Monday night House session. Franson has been a…

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Republican Bill on Female Genital Mutilation Has Yet to Receive a Hearing in Minnesota House

A Republican-backed bill in the Minnesota House that would expand criminal penalties for female genital mutilation has yet to receive so much as a committee hearing. The bill was introduced January 24 by Rep. Mary Franson (R-Alexandria) and has 17 Republican cosponsors, but not a single Democratic cosponsor. As The…

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Efforts to Subpoena DHS Inspector General to Discuss Child Care Fraud Repeatedly Blocked

Minnesota House Republicans made multiple attempts this week to subpoena Department of Human Services Inspector General Carolyn Ham to discuss the fraudulent activity in the state’s Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP), but those efforts were repeatedly thwarted. On Wednesday, the Office of the Legislative Auditor released its long-awaited report on…

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Zero Democrats Co-Sponsor Bill That Would Tackle Female Genital Mutilation in Minnesota

Minnesota Rep. Mary Franson (R-Alexandria) recently introduced a bill that would expand the criminal definition of female genital mutilation (FGM), but zero Democratic House colleagues have signed on as co-sponsors. Under current Minnesota law, it is illegal for doctors to perform FGM, but there are no penalties in place for…

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Republicans Call on Minnesota DHS to Hand Over Information About Child Care Fraud

Newly-appointed Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) Commissioner Tony Lourey is facing pressure from Republican legislators over the department’s failure to respond to several data requests seeking information on the state’s alleged child care fraud. The fraud was first exposed in a May 2018 Fox 9 report, and has been…

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