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Top 5 Worst Conservative Moments from the 2023 Legislative Session (so far).

1. Every Minnesota conservative in the Senate voted against codifying the right to abortion

During the 2022 midterms, Minnesotans made it clear that they expected elected officials to act and protect reproductive freedom.

And our progressive leaders at the Capitol followed through on their promises by codifying the right to abortion into Minnesota law.

Even though our progressive trifecta secured the passage of this critical legislation, every single conservative member of the Minnesota Senate voted against the bill. And they even launched an informal filibuster to prevent the bill from passing the Senate.

Minnesotans are sick and tired of having our rights put under attack. Abortion is essential health care. It is unacceptable that our conservative lawmakers refuse to stand up for reproductive rights. 

2. Minnesota conservatives fought efforts to pass Paid Family and Medical Leave 

Minnesota progressives have been working tirelessly to pass Paid Family and Medical Leave, but conservatives in the House and Senate have road-blocked it every step of the way. 

The Paid Family and Medical Leave bill would create a paid leave insurance program so that no Minnesotans have to make the unfair choice between a paycheck and taking time off to care for a new baby or a family member with a serious illness.

But instead of bolstering efforts to support Minnesota workers and families, conservatives have opposed the bill and introduced insulting alternatives that put big corporations ahead of workers and small businesses. 

Every Minnesotan deserves time off when they or a loved one get sick. Enough is enough; it’s time to pass Paid Family and Medical Leave. 


3.Conservative senator missed the mark on abortion rights

During a floor debate on the Protect Reproductive Freedom Act, conservative Senator Glenn Gruenhagen made several offensive and out-of-touch comments towards the women in the Senate.

At one point, Gruenhagen exclaimed: “Ladies, come to your senses. Think of what you’re doing.” 

If that wasn’t condescending enough, Gruenhagen doubled down a few months later with a series of bizarre and incredibly hurtful comments correlating domestic abuse to abortion.

When talking about domestic abuse, Greunhagen asserted that abortion and pornography lead to women being abused. 

Sen. Gruenhagen, the decision about whether or not to have an abortion is deeply personal and best left to women and their doctors. These comments full of misinformation and hurtful assertions have no place in Minnesota. 


4. Conservatives in the Senate opposed restoring the right to vote for 50,000+ Minnesotans 

Early this year, Minnesota progressives voted to restore voting rights for over 50,000 Minnesotans across the state.

Now that Governor Walz has signed the bill into law, the Restore the Vote Act will return the right to vote for people convicted of a felony as soon as their incarceration ends. 

Unsurprisingly, almost every conservative senator voted against the legislation. 

Because Minnesota is a low-incarceration, high-probation state, former inmates can remain in the carceral-justice system for years or even decades before they can re-enter the voting system. 

With Restore the Vote signed into law, Minnesota has a chance to strengthen our democracy to include the thousands of people affected by the carceral system. Conservatives should be embarrassed for opposing such essential, groundbreaking legislation. 

5. Conservative lawmaker admitted to calling 911 on a drag show 

We all cringed when conservative Senator Nathan Wesenberg admitted to calling 911 on drag shows during a finance omnibus bill debate. 

Wesenberg reported the drag show as child abuse because there were minors attending who tipped the performers. He proceeded to call the drags shows “disgusting, wrong and immoral.” 

Sen. Weseneberg, get in line. Your offensive comments and anti-LBTQ+ agenda have no place in Minnesota. 

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