Minn. House votes to repeal, clear up DUI immunity for lawmakers - FOX 29 News Philadelphia | WTXF-TV

Minn. House votes to repeal, clear up DUI immunity for lawmakers

Posted: Updated:
ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) -

Minnesota House members voted late Wednesday night to essentially repeal their protection from getting arrested for drunk driving and other crimes.

Current state law allows them immunity from arrest on certain violations. In fact, they even get a card that many call a "get out of jail free card."

However, the House of Representatives passed a bill that could change all that by altering the law so that any lawmaker who commits "felony, gross misdemeanor, or misdemeanor" immediately violates a "breach of the peace" under the Minnesota constitution and can therefore be arrested.

Many lawmakers argued that established case law already threw out the protections for legislators, but they voted for the bill anyway to clear it up in state statute. It passed on a 115 to 13 vote.

Senator Ron Latz issued the following statement regarding the bill:

"Legislators can and should be arrested if they drive drunk. This is current law, and it is rightly enforced by the authorities. The U.S. Supreme Court decided this over 100 years ago, in USv. Williamson (1908), cited with approval in Gravel v. US (1972), stating unequivocally that the so-called "privilege from arrest" language in the USConstitution, mirrored in the Minnesota Constitution, applies only in cases of civil arrest and not to criminal conduct. Thus, the proposed bill's only value is to correct a misperception, largely created by its own advocates and recent media reports. That is not a sufficient justification for passing laws.

 

We can accomplish the education needed in other ways, and I remain committed to working together with the advocates,law enforcement and all interested parties toward our shared goal."

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • 5 injured in rollover crash at I-694 and River Road

    5 injured in rollover crash at I-694 and River Road

    Friday, August 22 2014 11:42 AM EDT2014-08-22 15:42:14 GMT

    A single-car, rollover crash at Interstate 694 and East River Road sent 5 people to the hospital Friday morning. According to the Minnesota State Patrol, the 2004 Chevy Trailblazer rolled several times after running off the eastbound ramp to River Road at a high rate of speed.

    A single-car, rollover crash at Interstate 694 and East River Road sent 5 people to the hospital Friday morning. According to the Minnesota State Patrol, the 2004 Chevy Trailblazer rolled several times after running off the eastbound ramp to River Road at a high rate of speed.


  • 28 new foods at Minnesota State Fair in 2014

    28 new foods at Minnesota State Fair in 2014

    Wednesday, June 25 2014 2:57 PM EDT2014-06-25 18:57:53 GMT
    The Minnesota State Fair is adding 28 new foods to the already massive, artery-clogging list of 500 foods from 300 different vendors. New food include everything from a bacon-wrapped turkey leg and beer gelato to a shrimp dog and chocolate salami.
    The Minnesota State Fair is adding 28 new foods to the already massive, artery-clogging list of 500 foods from 300 different vendors. New food include everything from a bacon-wrapped turkey leg and beer gelato to a shrimp dog and chocolate salami.
  • VIDEO: 180-mph double crash during Brainerd drag race

    VIDEO: 180-mph double crash during Brainerd drag race

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 8:53 PM EDT2014-08-21 00:53:09 GMT
    Photo courtesy of NHRA on YouTubePhoto courtesy of NHRA on YouTube
    When it comes to drag racing, rocket-type speed is the name of the game -- but that also means things can go wrong very quickly, and a double crash at a Brainerd, Minn., track is another grim reminder.
    When it comes to drag racing, rocket-type speed is the name of the game -- but that also means things can go wrong very quickly, and a double crash at a Brainerd, Minn., track is another grim reminder.
Widgets Magazine
Powered by WorldNow

WTXF-TV
330 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106-2796

Phone: (215) 925-2929
Fax: (215) 982-5494

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices