Senate Republicans are poised to remove a mask wearing policy in the Senate chambers in defiance of Governor Walz' universal mask mandate. KTOE quotes Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka, “We are gonna allow everybody to be back on the Senate floor in your normal seat, if you want to. So we’re not gonna require it, but if you want to you may, and masks will be optional.”
Walz announced last week that he is extending his Emergency Powers for the summer, and may eventually remove the mask mandate in July, despite COVID cases dropping significantly and 60% of Minnesotans being vaccinated. It's crystal clear that the Governor is inappropriately using his Emergency Powers to garner a better budget deal with Republicans.
The Senate's defiance of the Governor's order is excellent. If politicians at the Capitol are not following the orders, businesses in Minnesota should also be relieved of enforcement actions by Walz' Dept of Health.
Unfortunately, Senate Republicans aren't going hard enough in the paint. Gazelka is meeting behind closed doors with Tim Walz right now, on the cusp of passing a $54 Billion budget which would fund Walz' government agencies. Several businesses in Minnesota are currently under attack by the Attorney General and the Dept of Health for alleged violations of Walz' unilateral orders. That's why its critically important that Gazelka and Senate Republicans REFUSE to pass a budget until the Never Again Bill is passed. It's the only way to ensure that Walz' Emergency Powers come to an end and the people of Minnesota are spared from further assaults on their liberties.