Updated Jul 22, 2021 - Politics
Minnesota House speaker won't act on Rep. Thompson allegations yet
Two headshots of Minnesota Rep. John Thompson and House Speaker Melissa Hortman.
Rep. John Thompson and House Speaker Melissa Hortman. Photos: Minnesota Legislature

Minnesota House Democrats appear unlikely to take immediate action to expel or punish embattled state Rep. John Thompson.

Driving the news: House Speaker Melissa Hortman indicated Wednesday that she'll wait until any ethics complaints or court proceedings are resolved to take action against the St. Paul Democrat.

State of play: Hortman, along with other DFL leaders, have called on Thompson to resign over a series of domestic abuse allegations that recently came to light.

  • Thompson, who hasn't been convicted of domestic violence, denies wrongdoing and has so far refused to step down.
  • On Wednesday, following a conviction on an unrelated misdemeanor charge, he said he needed a few days to make a decision, Fox9 reports.

What she's saying: In a letter to House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt, Hortman cited House protocol and guidance from legal counsel. It wasn't clear how Wednesday's court proceeding would impact her timing.

The other side: Daudt called Hortman's response disappointing and said in a statement that Democrats' resignation calls "ring hollow when they refuse to take any steps to hold [Thompson] accountable."

Of note: Hortman did move to strip GOP Rep. Matt Grossell of his committee assignments based on police reports related to a drunken altercation at an area hospital in 2019.

What's next: The House Ethics Committee will hear another, unrelated complaint filed against Thompson on Friday.

  • Hortman told Daudt he is free to file a complaint of his own.

This story has been updated with additional developments.


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