Senate legal bills to defend against ex-employee tick up to $300,000
September 9, 2013 — 6:57pm
The Minnesota Senate paid out another $91,000 to defend itself against an ex-employee's lawsuit, bringing the total cost so far to about $300,000.
The legal fees are expected to continue to tick up. The case is headed for a 2014 trial date and Senators have set aside another $500,000 to deal with coming costs.
The Senate rules committee approved the latest payment Monday afternoon.
Former employee Michael Brodkorb is suing the senate over his 2011 dismissal. He was fired in the wake of his affair with 2011 Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch, who stepped down from leadership after she was confronted about the relationship.
"We think as an employer, we've done nothing wrong so we are going to defend the fact that we've done nothing wrong," said Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook. During the hearing where the bill was approved, Bakk referred to Brodkorb only as a "disgruntled, terminated employee."
The senate has asked that Brodkorb's attorneys be sanctioned over the public release of a list of current and ex-lawmakers who he believes had affairs with staffers. He claims those staffers were treated differently after their affairs and the list was released inadvertently.
A Duluth native who just barely lost Virginia's GOP gubernatorial primary said that politicians have not gone far enough in condemning the left for violence during a rally of white nationalists in Charlottesville. "I think that the left is going to try to use this as an excuse to crack down on conservative free speech," said Corey Stewart. "I think they're going to try to use this as an excuse to remove more historical monuments."