Minn. Dems accuse GOP lawmaker of violating law 22 Mar 13

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Minnesota’s Democratic Party wants an administrative judge to rule that a veteran Republican lawmaker broke the law with letters to newspapers saying four freshmen Democrats had voted for billions in new taxes.

The party’s complaint against Representative Greg Davids of Preston was filed Thursday with the Office of Administrative Hearings. It claims Davids was conflating routine procedural votes as support for the substance of legislation. Before a bill approved in one committee can be heard by the next, a committee report is adopted by the full House. That step is increasingly resulting in recorded votes.

Davids’ letters seize on a motion to advance Governor Mark Dayton’s tax bill to a committee for a hearing as a vote for new taxes. He says he is confident in his interpretation of the votes and regards the complaint as a test case on the underlying tactic.