St. Paul, MN, December 1, 2021 — Legislative Evaluation Assembly of Minnesota (LEA) is releasing its evaluation of the Minnesota legislature’s remarkable 2021 session. The 2021 LEA report rates the votes of all 201 legislators on sixteen selected bills. The report describes these bills in more depth and detail than normally seen in the popular press. LEA calls out the shift in government power in 2021 from open deliberation to closed door meetings of powerful leaders. “Minnesota government in 2021 continued to be dominated by the COVID emergency and the governor’s emergency powers. “ says LEA president Don Lee. “Legislators failed to assert their proper role to craft law. Effective governance was left to the governor and his administrators.”
Seven legislators with the highest LEA scores are honored in the 2021 LEA report.
Twelve House bills and thirteen Senate bills were selected by LEA for scoring. The report is dominated by the same unconstitutional omnibus bills that dominated the sessions. Omnibus bills on Taxes, Agriculture, Education, Energy, Health and Human Services, and Housing are included. Bills addressing the governor’s emergency powers, Voter ID, energy policy, and price gouging are also covered.
2021 Honorees: Representatives Steve Drazkowski, Steve Green, Matt Grossell, Eric Lucero, Shane Mekeland, Erik Mortensen, Jeremy Munson. (No Senate honorees.)
LEA had a table at the MN Patriots event near Zumbro Falls in southern Minnesota on September 28th. The weather was beautiful, and we had good attendance at our table. We passed out free LEA reports and encouraged attendees to join LEA.
Many attendees seemed recently awakened to political issues, and hungry for information about how they can make a difference.
The featured speaker was Dr Scott Jensen, who is running for governor of Minnesota.
Board members John Augustine and Ben Riechers represented LEA at the Citizen’s Council for Health Freedom’s (CCHF) annual Gala on Sept 9th in Oakdale, with a table at the event.
John and Ben discussed LEA’s work with the attendees, and handed out free copies of the LEA annual report. They report that they had many visitors at the table and good conversation with the attendees.
CCHF is committed to a health care system that is patient centered, protects patient privacy, and is free market driven. CCHF drafts legislation, meets with legislators, and makes fact-based arguments in the public square. Perhaps more exciting is the role they are now playing to help grow the existing free market for health care. Priorities over the next year include stopping COVID vaccine mandates, promoting free-market health care via WEDGE, which is a free trade zone for health care and gaining approval for ivermectin to be available over the counter. CCHF leader Twila Brase is optimistic that there will be bipartisan support for stronger health privacy laws at the state level.
The featured speaker at the event was Dr Scott Atlas. More information can be found here.
LEA mourns the loss of our friend, long-time supporter, and former board member, Tim Utz, who passed away April 18, 2021. Tim was a tireless champion of liberty and our founding American principles. He confidently espoused a conservative and Christian worldview, and was not afraid to talk to people from different backgrounds or political parties. Blue-collar to the core (a carpenter since the age of 20, who also had construction businesses and worked security on the side), Tim was enmeshed in his community — active in Lions Club, Toastmasters, Emergency Response, and the local charter commission. He was a candidate for mayor of Columbia Heights in 2016, and ran several times for the Minnesota House of Representatives. Tim was much more about issues than party. He was on the November ballot as a Republican Party nominee for State House in 2008 and 2010, as a Constitution Party candidate for State House in 2012 and 2014, and as an Independent candidate for State House in 2018.
Tim worked hard on his campaigns, using them as an opportunity to speak up for important principles. Here is how he summed up his reason for running for public office:
“Government needs citizens involved who are committed to the oath of office. People who recognize the Constitutional limits of power a public servant has in our Republic form of government. People willing to hold to those principles no matter the winds of resistance.”
He chose to spend money on a recount in a race where the margin wasn’t close, just to see what fraudulent activity might have coincided with the voting in his district. In his emphasis on election fraud he was ahead of his time.
Tim Utz served on the LEA board of directors from 2013 to 2015. The picture of Tim and his wife Nadine above was taken at an LEA annual banquet. LEA board member and former chairman John Augustine comments that “Tim let you know what he thought, even if his opinion wasn’t likely to prevail in the end, and he didn’t hold grudges if you didn’t agree with his opinion. He also made his residence available for hosting meetings when the need arose for an alternate location. Heartfelt condolences to his wife Nadine and other family and friends.”
Tim was a giver, a doer and a man of principle. He will be sorely missed.
The Minnesota Legislature’s website offers a wealth of information for an informed citizenry. Video of hearings, the text of bills and statutes, records of actions of the legislature and witness commentary can all be found if you know where to look.
LEA has created two video tutorials as an introduction to the Minnesota Legislature’s website. Every citizen should be able to navigate the information on this website to follow legislative activity that affects every Minnesotan.
LEA encourages wide distribution of these videos and welcomes feedback.
Come to the 2021 Awards banquet, where we honor the top scoring legislators in the 2020 LEA report. Meet the honorees, and hear Andy Cilek of the Minnesota Voters Alliance talk about the struggle for election integrity. Attendance is limited …Continue reading →
We recently celebrated Viola Maehren’s 100th birthday outside her residence in St Paul.
Viola Maehren was an early organizer of LEA , and on the LEA board for many years. LEA has been informing voters since 1972 on the basis of its Credo, supporting American founding principles and ideals. On the left, she is animated at the 2016 LEA Awards Banquet.
Viola is one of those high-energy, highly principled, enthusiastic citizens with the passion to makes things happen. She Viola was an election judge for many years for Ramsey county, and is an active volunteer making the altar breads at Saint Agnes Church. She helps prepare 2,000 hosts each week.