Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Candidates’ debate

Not the lyric from the Simon and Garfunkel song, but the one being held tonight for DFL gubernatorial candidates at the Hopkins Center for the Performing Arts. Spot hopes to attend, and he has a question. Although he doubts he’ll get a chance to ask it. But here it is:

The Legislative session ended in May in a train wreck and Tim Pawlenty, a/ka/ Governor Gutshot, really deciding on his own what to spend money on in the biennium that began July 1st.

At the time, there was wailing and gnashing of teeth and mutterings that the Legislature was plotting dark revenge. Since then? Nothing.

Then recently, a group of six individuals started a lawsuit to challenge the governor over his exercise of the power of unallotment, at least in the way that he used it. Based on a story in the Strib, Spot learned that the six lost state payments for nutritional assistance that each needed for medical reasons – reasons apart from the fact that we all need to eat to live.

Who’s representing or backing these six people on what is certainly the most important Minnesota constitutional question in years? Advocacy groups? Public interest law firms? Some deep pockets of some kind, anyway? Actually, it is a Legal Aid Services Lawyer. Good on her/him.

Word also comes to the remote precincts where Spot abides that the Minnesota House Rules Committee has decided to file a brief supporting the six. (That was in the news, too.)

Not exactly an overwhelming profile in courage.

Long prologue, but here’s the question:

Are you happy with the way the session ended in St. Paul? If not, what should have been done about it, and if you were in the Legislature, why didn’t you do it?

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