‘The noise of democracy’

I dare say Gov. Mark Dayton held one of the most unusual news conferences in the history of Minnesota today when he signed an executive order that would expand Medicaid coverage in Minnesota.

Members of the tea party were invited into his office and even offered opportunities to address those assembled. Usually, opponents of a governor are kept outside.

One by one, a supporter of expanded health care spoke, followed by an opponent, who usually argued on constitutional grounds. Dayton called it “the noise of democracy.”

One speaker, a veteran, opposed the move, and noted with some irony that he gets his medical care through the government.

Not since Gov. Jesse Ventura had a temper tantrum when a reporter kidded him about the way he sang Werewolves of London at his inauguration party has a first gubernatorial news conference been so rousing.

MPR’s Tom Scheck will have more on this later today on All Things Considered.

  • Brian

    That will certainly be an interesting segment to hear. Can’t wait!

  • Tyler

    Outstate always elects the governor, I guess.

  • John P.

    Politicians usually pretend that theirs is the only point of view worthy of mention, and even refuse to name the other party, referring to them as “the other side” or some such nonsense. They apparently think we don’t notice this dis-respectfulness.

    Dayton’s approach is a breath of fresh air.

  • Joanna

    Kudos to Mark Dayton for not being afraid to let people hear an airing of views by his political opponents!