Secretary of the Senate Cal Ludeman, a former Republican gubernatorial candidate, has sent a memo to staff officials asking that media requests for information and other data requests be routed to a top assistant because “we are in the middle of a political environment.”
On Monday, Ludeman defended the unusual memo, which he sent a week ago to the Senate sergeant-at-arms, payroll manager and director of the Senate’s information office and others. He said the memo was the result of the three-to-five media and data requests that Senate officials were receiving a week.
Because of the “political environment”, wrote Ludeman, “it is important to remember that comments made by the Secretary of Senate staff can be taken out of context for a political purpose.”
Senate DFLers had earlier complained of Ludeman’s selection to serve as Secretary of the Senate, saying the appointment unnecessarily politicized a job that had traditionally been non-partisan. Ludeman was appointed after Republicans assumed a majority in the Senate in January.
Ludeman said Monday the memo was not intended to create a “chilling effect” for Senate staff members. “We just want to [provide information] consistently,” he said. “I guess anybody can read into that what they want.
“But I want to know what we’re telling everybody,” he said. “Maybe, that’s just me.”
More from Star Tribune
More From Hot Dish Politics
Minnesota state budget is settled, but Dayton extends political battle with lawmakers -- with likely legal consequences.
The Star Tribune's morning political newsletter
As President Trump's firing of FBI Director James Comey continues to rock the Capitol, Sen. Amy Klobuchar anticipates the Senate Judiciary Committee will play an important role in the aftermath.
Rep. Erik Paulsen called for an independent investigation into Russia's interference in the presidential election following President Trump's firing of FBI Director James Comey, going further than many GOP lawmakers in the aftermath of a move that has roiled the Capitol over the last day.
The attack ads are already starting against House Republicans who approved the controversial healthcare overhaul last week.