The Minnesota House of Representatives Public Information Services posted two Session Update videos after DFLers and Republicans elected their new leaders. One video showed Paul Thissen, who was elected the new Speaker of the Minnesota House, flanked by a large group of DFL House members. The other video was Kurt Daudt, the newly elected Minority Leader, by himself.
It makes sense in one way, DFLers are more excited about their results, but I also wonder if there isn’t an indication of some issues among the Republican group. Daudt said in his media availability that he didn’t think anybody saw this coming. I disagree, DFLers were pretty confident of winning one legislative body, and were cautiously optimistic of winning both bodies. It is only shocking because I think Republicans spend so little time interacting with people on the other side, and receiving accolades from like-minded individuals, that they were the only ones who didn’t see this coming.
I think the two videos tell another story. There is a wide range of ideology among House DFLers, from the very liberal, to many moderates, to former Republicans. They won’t all agree, but they are unified. I’m not sure about the other side. They are so like-minded, and so confident that they are always right, that they have a really hard time changing, probably even about who they support for leadership. Kurt Daudt might have a big task to get his caucus together. I think it is also might be a bad sign for Republicans that they didn’t elect a Deputy Minority Leader, which makes me think tensions may have been very high.
It is interesting that no information has leaked out. It is interesting that my state Rep., Pat Garofalo, has been so quiet on Twitter. I think it is going to be another rough week or two before they start coming back to life. The one thing Republicans sure are all talking about is how DFLers wanted bipartisanship, and stressing that they are going to hold DFLers to that. But what they are forgetting is that they did not just ignore those bipartisanship calls and go on with their business, they taunted the DFL and gave them the finger at every opportunity. It is not the DFL’s job to be bipartisan now, they received a mandate, it is the DFL’s job to prove to Minnesotans that the DFL has the agenda to bring Minnesota back to where it was before Ventura and Pawlenty.