Governor Tim Walz turned up pressure on Senate Republicans today for a compromise on an emergency assistance program for Minnesotans who can’t afford their insulin. Among those the governor invited to the Capitol was 20-year-old Alexis Stanley, who says since she was diagnosed with diabetes a year-and-a-half ago, “my life has been in the hand of legislators and greedy pharmaceutical companies.”
Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka tweeted this morning if the governor calls a special session, the Senate will take up Republicans’ bill right away. That drew a sharp response from the governor. “We have time to tweet but not to meet?… Got my cell phone number. Doesn’t work that you bring up your own bill…. I’m more than willing and I’ve said, I’m willing to compromise, I’m willing to talk about that, but that is not a solution.”
Walz repeated that pharmaceutical companies, “They’re gonna pay something in this.” That is the heart of the stalemate with Republicans. They’ve proposed drug companies provide free insulin to those who can’t afford it, but oppose a fee on pharmaceutical manufacturers.