Taking potshots at House Republicans and fiscal conservatives, House Rep. Phyllis Kahn, DFL-Minneapolis, said the University faces stiff competition with other state universities and colleges for state funding and might not have its needs met in the short legislative session.
Speaking before the Minnesota Student Association on Tuesday, Kahn outlined the status of the University’s legislative issues, highlighting the need for a Democratic-controlled House in order meet campus concerns.
“I do do a lot of work on University issues,” Kahn said. “But seriously, for good support of the University, you won’t get it from Republican members.”
The University’s $134 million capital budget request sits at the state Capitol, having been tapered by Gov. Jesse Ventura to $54 million, and is awaiting action by the Legislature.
Although Kahn represents the University’s district, she does not sit on the House higher-education committee.
“She’s been in office longer than anybody in this room has been alive,” said MSA president Ben Bowman. “First and foremost, she should be sitting on the higher-education committee.”
MSA members also approved by a 23-3 vote the All-Campus Elections Rules in time for the student elections process to begin today.
The key points of the rules debate were electronic campaigning and voting. The initial vote to approve the rules failed, followed by an unsuccessful attempt to remove certain provisions that would have banned e-mail campaigning on election day.
The new rules allow candidates to make individual contributions to their own campaigns without counting toward their campaign expenditure limits — $1,200 for presidential and vice presidential positions, and $300 for all others.
V. Paul Virtucio welcomes comments at [email protected] He can also be reached at (612) 627-4070 x3234.