MINNESOTA: Anti-Bullying Bill Approved After Bitter Opposition From Republicans
One week after it squeaked through in the state Senate, late last night the Minnesota House approved an anti-bullying bill, but not before Republicans denounced it as fascist and an assault on the bible.
GOP lawmakers acknowledged from the start of the debate at 1 p.m. Tuesday that House DFLers had the votes to pass the Safe and Supportive Minnesota Schools Act, but they objected to the measure right up until the vote, shortly before 12:30 a.m. The bill prevailed on a 69-63 vote, mostly along party lines. The bill passed the Senate last week with a 36-31 vote with all Republicans and three DFLers voting against it. House Republicans used vivid imagery to demonstrate their opposition in hours of speeches. They said the bill itself amounted to bullying, described it as fascism and compared it to George Orwell's novel "1984," about a state completely controlled by the government. "The Democrats want access into your private life," said Rep. Jim Newberger, R-Becker.Gov. Mark Dayton will sign the bill at 4PM today in a ceremony on the steps of the state Capitol. JMG reader Phillip directs us to the opposing speech below.