Governor Mark Dayton’s announcement that his Lt. Governor Tina Smith will fill Al Franken’s seat when Franken resigns in January has set off a series of possible succession moves.
Minnesota’s constitution says the Senate President becomes Lt. Governor if there is a vacancy. Senator Michelle Fischbach, a Republican,is the Senate President. Dayton said he was ready to serve with her as Lt. Governor and was confident in his health holding up through the end of his term. Dayton has been treated for cancer in the past.
There has been talk of holding a special session to elect a Democrat to be Senate President. That way Republicans would not be potentially giving up a seat in the closely divided Minnesota Senate. However Dayton says that would require the agreement of the House and Senate leaders of both parties.
At a news conference Fischbach says she will hold both jobs – Lt. Governor and State Senator.