Gov. Mark Dayton has vetoed an attempt by the Legislature to tweak two of Minnesota’s newly redistricted political boundaries.
When the court redrew the state’s political map this year, a few of those lines created unexpected problems. There was the legislative boundary that ran right through the middle of an apartment building, and the line that carved a dozen residents of one town into a separate district.
But the GOP-controlled Legislature’s attempts to make minor adjustments to the boundaries of Senate Districts 39 and 49 ran into opposition from DFLers, who said the courts – not the Legislature – should fix any errors in the maps.
In his veto letter, Dayton said: “This bill would set a bad precedent and invite further legislative adjustments which could lead to additional lawsuits and voter confusion. Moreover, I have been very clear, as was my predecessor, that any change in election law must have broad bipartisan support in order for me to support it. The votes in both chambers on this bill did not meet that requirement.”
Sen. Geoff Michel, R-Edina, called the governor's veto "very suprising," considering that the bill was backed by the nonpartisan League of Minnesota Cities, with the blessing of the Secretary of State's office.
The Legislature made the same change to Edina's Senate district eight years ago, with no difficulty, he said.
"What Dayton's veto means is that these cities and residents have to hire a lawyer and petition the courts," Michel said in an email. "All to correct a technical error by courts. What an absurd result."