Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party Kicks Off Early Voting in Apple Valley

DFL leaders marked the beginning of early voting today with a kickoff event at the Apple Valley DFL field office.  

DFL Chair Ken Martin, House Minority Leader Paul Thissen, State Senator Greg Clausen, President of the Human Rights Campaign, Chad Griffin, Second Congressional Candidate Angie Craig and state house and senate candidates spoke to volunteers about the importance of early voting and why it is so critical this year that everyone get out to vote. After the speaking program volunteers headed to their voting locations to vote early.  

“The stakes are too high to sit on the sidelines,” said DFL Chairman Ken Martin. “The outcome of this election will determine whether our economy continues to rebound from the Great recession or revert back to the policies that caused it; whether our roads and bridges get the safety updates they need; whether women’s health decisions remain up to each woman and her doctor. This election will determine the makeup of the Supreme Court and whether our nation makes the changes necessary to slow the effects of climate change, and how we continue our relationships with our allies around the world.

Similar events took place at DFL Field Offices across the state including; Minnetonka, Eden Prairie, St. Cloud, Willmar, Morris, Coon Rapids, Plymouth, and Bemidji.

Earlier this week the DFL launched Election Central, a digital voting tool to help make voting easier. 

Laurie Pryor Campaign Kick Off

Pryor Logo


Special Guest:

DFL House Minority Leader
Paul Thissen


Minnetonka DFL Headquarters
14525Highway 7, Suite 345
Minnetonka, MN 55345

Saturday, July 23 2016

Welcome/Sign-in:  10:00 AM
Speakers:  10:10 AM
Door Knock:  10:30 AM to 1:30 PM
Check In:  1:30 PM to 2:00 PM

Contact Madeleine Garces for more info at 612.965.9487,


Minority rules: Why Rep. Paul Thissen and Sen. David Hann are the key players in special session negotiations

The following article by Briana Bierschbach appeared on the Minnpost website June 16, 2016:

House MInority Leader Paul Thissen:  "We had another conversation, it was not productive from my perspective." MinnPost photo by Briana Bierschbach
House MInority Leader Paul Thissen: “We had another conversation, it was not productive from my perspective.”
MinnPost photo by Briana Bierschbach

After a 90-minute meeting between Minnesota’s top political leaders in St. Paul on Wednesday, Rep. Paul Thissen had had enough.

In front of a group of reporters, the Democratic House minority leader launched into an attack on Republican Speaker of the House Kurt Daudt, saying the majority party was blocking weeks-long negotiations over a potential special session of the Legislature by not bringing new ideas to the table.

DFL Gov. Mark Dayton already clearly laid out his demands on everything from new spending and bonding proposals to light-rail funding, Thissen said, but Republicans had yet to make any offers in return.

“We had another conversation; it was not productive from my perspective,” Thissen said. “If we are going to have a productive conversation going forward, I think it’s incumbent on the Republicans to come back with an actual, concrete counter offer.”

But things look a lot different when you’re in the majority.

When Sen. Tom Bakk stepped up to the microphone, the DFL Senate majority leader struck a more positive note than Thissen.

“I wouldn’t describe today’s meeting as nonproductive, but less productive than I would have liked to travel down from Lake Vermillion for, but I’m still hopeful,” he said. “I think the speaker’s tone was a little bit better today than it was last week.”  Read More

In disservice to Minnesotans, House Republicans end 2016 Legislative Session in chaos, fail to get the work done

08.21.15.daudtleftJust more than a week ago, the 2016 Legislative Session came to an end without jobs, transportation or family leave bills. All measures that would have grown the economy and supported the middle class.

While a tax bill was approved, it is unknown if Gov. Dayton will sign it into law. After years of leading the nation in anti-smoking efforts, Republicans slipped a provision into the bill providing a $35 million tax cut for people who buy cigarettes. Republicans also included a provision to end a sales-tax exemption for the Minnesota High School League on tickets and admissions to school events. That money, about $800,000, is used to help low-income students pay sports fees.

Click here to read a letter from House DFL Leader Paul Thissen to Speaker of the House Kurt Daudt about the trouble last hours of the session. Click here to watch the final moments of the House’s debate on the jobs bill. 

Gov. Dayton is now considering whether or not to call a special session. In recent days he has indicated before he calls a special session, there needs to be an agreement on funding for Southwest Light Rail; more money for higher education; and reinstatement of the sales-tax emption that is used to help low-income students participate in activities. Read More

House GOP’s ‘my way or the highway’ approach on transportation means no highways will be fixed in Minnesota


Last week, Gov. Dayton and Lt. Gov. Smith sent a letter to Speaker Daudt urging House Republicans to work toward consensus on a comprehensive transportation package that truly addresses Minnesota’s budget shortfalls for highways, roads, bridges, and transit.

House DFL Leader Paul Thissen released the following statement.

“Minnesotans are frustrated by the gridlock in St. Paul. They expect that their leaders will work together and compromise in order to do something we all recognize is necessary – fix our state’s deteriorating transportation system once and for all. 

“But the reality is Republicans have shown no real interest in passing a transportation bill this session. Speaker Daudt had admitted the goal of their transportation plan is starve the general fund, taking money away from our schools and hospitals without generating new revenue needed to fund our roads, bridges, and highways. And rather than work to find common ground, they have done nothing but point fingers at Democrats and cast blame. No wonder Minnesotans are frustrated. Read More

Paul Thissen: GOP leaves communities disconnected by underfunding broadband

Paul ThissenBy Rep. Paul Thissen, DFL leader, Minnesota House of Representatives

At a recent forum about the lack of high-speed Internet access in greater Minnesota, a woman from Aitkin, Minn., told us, “this isn’t just a need—it’s a necessity.”

I agree. The availability of high-speed Internet has become a critical issue of economic vitality and quality of life for all Minnesotans. Unfortunately, House Republicans ignored this critical priority for greater Minnesota and halted our momentum to ensure all Minnesotans have access to high-speed Internet. Read More

Top 10 Missed Opportunities of the 2015 Legislature

The following commentary by House Minority Leader Paul Thissen appeared in the May 23, 2015 StarTribune:

From oil trains to kids, it’s no laughing matter.

With a healthy budget surplus thanks to a growing economy, the 2015 legislative session began with great opportunity to keep Minnesota moving forward. Unfortunately, the session ended in chaotic fashion this past Monday and with few accomplishments.

With David Letterman having read his final top 10 list this week, I thought I would share the (not-so-funny) top 10 failures of the 2015 legislative session:

10. Failed to finish the work on time

Given a $2 billion budget surplus, most believed that the Legislature would be able to work with Gov. Mark Dayton and finish on time. Unfortunately, the Republican majority chose to send us into a special session over their unwillingness to compromise with the governor on his top priority: investments in our youngest learners.

9. Failed to adequately invest in long-term care workers

GOP: Education veto overshadows successes of 2015 Legislature
The Legislature did increase funding for nursing homes this session. However, the insistence by House Republicans on cutting health and human Read More