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Dayton back surgery goes well

ST. PAUL -- Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton plans to resume full work next week after successful Monday back surgery. Doctors fused two vertebrae in his lower back to improve his legs' strength and stability during the three-hour surgery, Dayton spoke...

ST. PAUL - Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton plans to resume full work next week after successful Monday back surgery.

Doctors fused two vertebrae in his lower back to improve his legs’ strength and stability during the three-hour surgery, Dayton spokesman Matt Swenson said. It is similar to surgery Dayton had three years ago.
Both back surgeries were done at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, as was a 2012 surgery to repair a torn hip muscle.
“I want to assure everyone that this procedure will not diminish either my capacity to fulfill my duties as governor, or my passion for serving the people of Minnesota,” Dayton said in a statement. “I look forward to a full recovery, as I experienced before.”
The procedure began about 9:30 a.m. Monday, two hours later than planned. Dayton was under general anesthesia during surgery.
Swenson said the governor would be “in continuous contact with his commissioners and staff” after surgery.
House Speaker Kurt Daudt, R-Crown, said last week that he had planned to meet Monday with Dayton to discuss a possible special legislative session.
Swenson said the governor saw his doctor Friday, and Monday was when Mayo could schedule the procedure, so Dayton’s office contacted Daudt and Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk, D-Cook, about the need to postpone the meeting.
While Dayton was gone Monday, Lt. Gov. Tina Smith announced Emily Johnson Piper would be the new human services commissioner. Dayton’s chief of staff also announced Kimberly Slay Holmes would replace Piper as the governor’s chief lawyer after serving at the state Revenue Department.

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