Minnesota Republican botches colleague’s name while complaining about police dogs losing their jobs

Minnesota Republican botches colleague’s name while complaining about police dogs losing their jobs
Image via screengrab.

Minnesota State Representative Brian Johnson (R-District 32A) on Tuesday made multiple gaffes during a debate on House File 100, which would legalize recreational cannabis use.

First, Johnson botched the name of the bill's sponsor.

"Madam Chair, Representative Stevens, can you tell me how much money is in this bill to help, uh, defer the cost to our counties and, uh, police departments for the cost of retirement of the dogs and the replacement?" Johnson asked.

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Minnesota House of Representatives Speaker Melissa Hortman (D-District 34A) immediately corrected Johnson and introduced State Representative Zack Stephenson (D-District 35A).

"Representative Johnson, we don't have a Representative Stevens. We have Representative Stephenson and he will yield and he will answer your question. Representative Stevenson," Hortman said.

Stephenson addressed Johnson's concerns.

"Thank you Madam Speaker," Stephenson began. "Representative Johnson, there are, as we went through last night, considerable appropriations to local units of government in multiple different areas of the bill, including appropriations for public safety in the bill. I could look to get the specific numbers that you're referencing. I don't know them right off the top of my head, but I could look for you."

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Johnson was unsatisfied.

"Speaker Hartman, Representative Stevenson, I did not see anything reading through the bill, dealing with our canine units," he reiterated.

HF100 contains a clause about police dogs in Subdivision 20:

Department of Public Safety; State Patrol: $6,157,000 in fiscal year 2024 and $2,218,000 in fiscal year 2025 are appropriated from the trunk highway fund to the commissioner of public safety for use by the Minnesota State Patrol for the purposes of this act, including but not limited to replacing drug detection canines, providing accident reconstruction services, identifying and investigating incidents and offenses that involve driving under the influence, and sealing expunged records.

Watch the exchange below or at this link.

READ MORE: Watch: Minnesota Republican fears cannabis legalization would put 'drug dogs' out of work

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