Dozens of protestors filled the a stately Capitol office building Tuesday morning to share their view that the state of Minnesota should divest from Israel.
Despite occasionally shouting at Gov. Mark Dayton, they found the same answer others have found before: there's no current plan to change Minnesota's investment in Israel, which is two decades old.
"We really want to hear from you. We really want to understand what it's going to take," said one of the members of the divestment group, Break the Bonds.
"We have a different view, I have a different view than yours," Gov. Mark Dayton said. "As far as I'm concerned the case is closed as far as our decision. Now, I may not be here next January and there may be other new board members...From my standpoint, here we've had this debate, we disagree..."
"Why don't you answer her question," someone shouted from the audience.
"We're just at a point of disagreement," Dayton said.
Another protestor piped up to accuse Dayton of saying back in July that Palestinians "deserved" to be bombed. Dayton replied that he did not recall saying that and he did not believe he said that.
Protestors murmured in disagreement.
"You're quoted as saying that," a women said.
"You did say it, so what did you mean?" a man said.
In the July Star Tribune article protestors cited, Dayton, in fact, did not say that anyone deserved to be bombed.
He said, instead, "Tonight, I join with you in expressing my support of the people of Israel in defending themselves against Hamas’ terrorism."
Dayton suggested the protestors should return in March of next year when the long-held bonds will expire. The state currently holds $10 million in bonds issued by Israel and $15 million invested through the U.S. Agency for International Development and that is also considered an investment in Israel.
After some more shouting from protestors, Dayton said: "Excuse me, I'm going to terminate the meeting if we can't have a civil conversation."
Shortly thereafter, the Board of Investment meeting ended because the agenda was completed and the Land Exchange Board meeting began in the same room.
During that later meeting, the protestors could be heard chanting so loudly outside those left in the room had to speak louder and move closer to the board members to make themselves heard.