An opening round of finger-pointing in the Minnesota House today as lawmakers start working on a plan to help those hit with large health insurance premium increases on MNsure. Republicans tried for an immediate vote on the House floor on the proposal they rolled out this morning. Democrats objected, Rochester Representative Tina Liebling warning it would “skip the process where members of the public… get to come in and testify about the bill.” Republican Majority Leader Joyce Peppin fired back, “We have a choice. We can get going today and start working on it, or we can continue to play political games.”
Democrats then asked for an immediate vote on the plan legislative leaders talked about just before Christmas, Minority Leader Melissa Hortman saying, “This is the provision that everyone said that we should do without delay.” Republicans refused to vote on that, so there will be hearings next week at the Capitol.
Governor Mark Dayton wanted a bill on his desk this first week of session. Legislative leaders hope to pass bills next week, but negotiations with the governor would follow and it’s unclear how long that might take.