Thursday, January 04, 2007

Olson's cannot serve his constituents

The SC Times documents Rep Olson's first day back in St Paul, as well as others.

Olson is still looking for a legislative assistant.

The eight-term veteran has been without a caucus to support him since last month. Fellow Republicans decided then to suspend his membership pending the outcome of two misdemeanor domestic assault charges against him. Olson last month pleaded not guilty to both charges.

The caucus suspension means he has no help with research or communications. He is entitled to an assistant and office, paid for by the state.

Olson still voted for caucus leader Rep. Marty Seifert, R-Marshall, in a party-line vote Wednesday that saw Minneapolis DFLer Margaret Anderson Kelliher elected Speaker of the House.

He said he'll be interviewing legislative assistant candidates soon and doesn't believe the pending court proceedings will affect his ability to represent his constituents.

"I think I'm going to enjoy being an independent Republican," Olson said.

"The pressures of the caucus caused some strain. You want to do something ... and there'd be pressure for you not to. That's gone now."

Anyone think I have a shot at being Rep Olson's Legislative Assistant? It would make for some good blogging, that's for sure.

I raised the issue yesterday, how can he serve his constituents when he has no legislative support? No one is answering his phone, setting appointments for him while he is in committee or on the floor.

The constituents in 16B are going to suffer for their elected leaders alleged transgressions...and that is problematic.

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