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Saturday, April 30, 2005

Legislature kicks it up a notch

The House passed several bills this week. Several hours were spent on an ethanol bill that would increase the amount of ethanol required in gasoline to 20% from 10%. I'm not entirely sold on ethanol, but it is better than the alternatives like MTBE. What I would like to see is a uniform oxygenate standard across the entire country so we don't have all these differently-formulated gasolines that need to be cranked out by refineries. If ethanol is the oxygenate that's chosen, so much the better.

Yesterday was the jobs bill (not a big deal save for the school starting amendment, which would require schools to start class after Labor Day. A dumb idea, if you ask me) and the Health and Human Services bill. The HHS finance bill passed by the House would throw a bunch of people off of MnCare, certainly not the best way to deal with rising health insurance costs. Forcing people to go to emergency rooms won't save any money. The article mentions several abortion-related initiatives, but doesn't mention that pro-lifers voted against an amendment to require hospitals to let rape victims know about emergency contraception. Yep, those pro-lifers, not caring if rape victims have to carry their rapist's child. There was also a rumor that Rep. Tom Emmer, still obsesses with that Minnesota Aids Project-affiliated website, was passing around the House floor some documents talking about interesting sexual practices. I didn't happen to see that one, though, so maybe it is just a rumor.


At 1:00 PM, April 30, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually, here's what I heard was the big story of the night. Rep. Fran Bradley (the chair of the HHS committee) apparently passed out on the House floor thank-you letters relating to certain parts of the HHS omnibus bill. A DFLer (I forget who) stood up and accused him of soliciting those letters and threatening to remove parts of the bill if he didn't get them. Bradley, indignant, stood up and said something to the effect of (certainly not exact words...and this was apparently, I wasn't there) "It was my office that asked for those letters, and I never threatened anybody. How dare you question my integrity?

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