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Back in Session: Richfield Legislators Head Back to the Capitol

The Minnesota State Legislature is back in session.

Editor's Note: Capitol Review is a weekly look at what your state legislators are doing at the Minnesota Capitol—how they're voting, the bills they're writing and the issues they're getting behind. Come back to Richfield Patch every Wednesday for a new Capitol Review.

The Gay Marriage Debate Continues

Tuesday was the deadline for political committees such as Minnesota for Marriage, Minnesotans United For All Families, and OutFront Minnesota Marriage Equality to file finance reports for their campaigns on one side or the other of the marriage amendment ballot question. The Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board will likely have the full reports sometime Wednesday morning.

Since the gay marriage amendment was introduced late in last year’s state legislative session, House Minority Leader Paul Thissen (D-Richfield/Minneapolis) has been very vocal about his stance against the measure,

: “I think it’s a mistake that it’s even on the ballot. I am cautiously optimistic that people will side with opportunity [for all].”

While both sides of the marriage issue are building up steam to fight the issue out at the ballot box, Sen. Ken Kelash (D-Richfield/Minneapolis) joined with Sen. Scott Dibble (D-Minneapolis), Sen. Ron Latz (D-St Louis Park/Hopkins) and minority leader Sen. Tom Bakk (DFL-Cook) to sponsor a bill that would pull the amendment from November's ballot. 

"It’ll be a long shot, but there are enough Republicans who've expressed remorse, and it’ll give them the opportunity to vote their conscience," Dibble told Patch in .

House Committee Advances Bill to Allow Prosecutors to Carry Guns

Richfield was part of the House Public Safety and Crime Prevention Policy and Finance’s decision to advance two bills designed to pump up security for county attorneys, including one that would let prosecutors carry firearms.

The bills come shortly after a Cook County attorney, Tim Scannell, was shot three times by a man he had just successfully prosecuted on Dec. 15, 2011.

Slocum and several other committee members were concerned the bill could create some confusion about bringing a gun into a courthouse and into the courtroom itself, where judicial order prohibits firearms, according to a Star Tribune article.

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