Dayton, senator, fight, then agree to meet for peace breakfastST. PAUL — Perhaps a hardy breakfast can lead to a truce between one of Minnesota’s most conservative Republicans, who wants to serve in Congress, and the state’s liberal Democratic governor.
By: Don Davis, Worthington Daily Globe
ST. PAUL — Perhaps a hardy breakfast can lead to a truce between one of Minnesota’s most conservative Republicans, who wants to serve in Congress, and the state’s liberal Democratic governor.
After a day of back-and-forth emails and letters sharply criticizing each other, Sen. Mike Parry, R-Waseca, late Friday afternoon accepted an invitation from Gov. Mark Dayton for a fence-mending breakfast next week.
The spat, the latest of several between the two politicians, was about a day care unionization vote Dayton wanted but a judge ruled was not within his power to call. Parry strongly opposes the election.
The Friday chapter began when Dayton read a Parry email from his congressional campaign office (he is challenging Democratic U.S. Rep. Tim Walz in southern Minnesota). Parry claimed that Dayton’s plan was to “force hard working Minnesotans into a union.”
Dayton fired off a response to the Parry campaign email at 7:48 a.m. Friday, telling Parry and Rep. Steve Drazkowski, R-Mazeppa, that he was canceling a meeting with the two GOP lawmakers.
“Sen. Parry, this email is inaccurate and deeply offensive,” Dayton wrote, saying no one would be forced to join a union. Dayton said he would require any future communication with Parry to be in writing.
The governor apologized to Drazkowski and said he would meet with him alone on the original meeting topic, state union negotiations not related to daycare providers.
Parry responded with a letter pointing out that despite their differences, they worked together on veterans’ issues earlier this year and he wanted to “bury the hatchet.”