Democrats in the Minnesota House have elected their leadership team tonight. They elected DFL House Minority Leader Paul Thissen of Minneapolis to be the Speaker of the House when the Legislative session begins in 2013.
DFLers also elected Rep. Erin Murphy of St. Paul to be the House Majority Leader over Rep. Paul Marquart of Dilworth.
Murphy worked hard to recruit and elect candidates over the past four years. Murphy, a nurse by training, is an expert on health care and is a strong backer of President Obama’s health care plan.
“I look forward to working with Speaker Thissen and legislators from both parties to govern this state in a manner that reflects the wishes of Minnesotans for progress, results and a better future for our state,” Murphy said in a statement.
Murphy and Thissen will now have to appoint chairmanships and assign members to specfiic committees. They will also be responsible for setting the DFL agenda when the next legislative session starts in January. They also have the delicate balancing act of ensuring the needs of rural Minnesota and the suburbanites are not overlooked by two leaders who represent Minneapolis and St. Paul.
Democrats now control all of state government for the first time since 1990. Their main order of business will be to pass a two-year budget at a time when the state is facing a projected budget shortfall of several billion dollars.