Senator Carolyn Laine, DFL-Columbia Heights, will retire from the legislature at the end of 2020
St. Paul, Minn.— Caroyln Laine has been privileged to serve the cities of Columbia Heights, Fridley, St. Anthony, New Brighton, and Hilltop for five terms in the House of Representatives and, now as Assistant Minority Leader, in the current term of the Senate.
Senator Laine clarified, “I am leaving on my own terms, in good health, with no primary opponent, and in a ‘blue’ district. So why? For more than a year, family demands of both (grown) children and (aging) mother have been absorbing my focus and time. Over the holidays, I assessed the needs of the upcoming Session, my ongoing family demands, as well as the busyness of getting into normal campaigning, and I decided it was time to let go of something.”
“I think sometimes we legislators get lost in our little cocoon of the legislature. It is important, and I trust good people will step up to the responsibility, but it is not the most important. There will be different ways for me to work on crucial issues of the day without the distraction of politicking,” she continued.
“I am very grateful to my constituents for the opportunity to serve them for 14 years. Some of the legislation of which I am most proud addresses both birth and death,” said Laine. Legislation she authored support doulas for women in childbirth and prison reforms for women inmates and their birthing. How we can care for our loved ones after death has been affected by her singular legislation that makes possible home funerals and green burials. She has presented over 50 times on this subject and will continue that work.
Laine added, “The issue I have spent the most legislative time on is Family Law: six years of work creating nation-leading changes regarding the challenging work of establishing parenting time when parents separate.”
Laine has also served eight years on the Council of Asian Pacific Minnesotans and restructured the statutes to enable our three Ethnic Councils to have a stronger voice in legislative work.