2013 MN Legislative Session Through Eyes of Freshman Lawmakers

By KBJR News 1

May 20, 2013 Updated May 20, 2013 at 9:56 PM CDT

St. Paul, MN (NNCNOW.com) - It's an experience first time lawmakers say nothing could have really prepared them for.

"Anyone that's down here or thinking about running for office, it's a lot different than you think," said Rep. Jason Metsa (DFL, Virginia).

It's the last day of the 2013 legislative session and time seems to have flown by.

"The last four or five months have been an absolute whirlwind, I can't believe how extremely busy it is here," said Rep. Erik Simonson (DFL, Duluth).

But amidst all the chaos, the payoff is still evident.

"It's such a humbling job to have, every day when you're walking up the capitol steps and it's not to protest it's to vote," said Rep. Mike Sundin (DFL, Esko).

The freshmen representatives may not have been here long, but each has made contributions amongst their constituents.

"I co–authored the health care bill as well with many of my colleagues. Very very proud of that," said Rep. Sundin.

"My work on the tax committee really consumed a huge amount of my time as we tried to put together a comprehensive plan to pay for all the investments we want to make in Minnesota," said Rep. Simonson.

Investments like public transportation. But, the reps saw first hand how the majority vote is not always easy to obtain.

"I'm kinda bummed out we didn't get a good balanced package. We got a lights on bill that we'll be passing but hopefully we'll come back and revisit it," said Rep. Metsa.

And hopes are high for next session.

"I know who to work with and how to get things done with those experienced members," said Rep. Sundin.

Rep. Simonson is looking forward to establishing a sub–committee he says will fight to eliminate the growing synthetic drug problem.

The session will conclude tonight at 12 am.

- Posted to the Web by Gabrielle Ware.