Minnesota AG’s office says GOP Senate leader can’t do 2 jobs

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota attorney general’s office says Republican state Senate President Michelle Fischbach cannot legally keep her Senate seat when she becomes lieutenant governor.

Solicitor General Alan Gilbert issued an opinion Thursday saying an 1898 decision by the Minnesota Supreme Court that Republicans have pointed to is no longer valid. But Gilbert notes only a court can decide the dispute.

Fischbach has said she expects to keep her spot in the Senate when she becomes Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton’s lieutenant governor. Dayton has appointed current Lt. Gov. Tina Smith to take U.S. Sen. Al Franken’s place. According to the Minnesota constitution the Senate President becomes lieutenant governor.

But Republicans currently hold a one-seat majority in the Minnesota Senate. If she can’t hold both jobs the partisan breakdown would be tied.

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