A Minnesota Senate panel will not give its approval to Gov. Mark Dayton's pick to head the Public Utilities Commission.
Members of the Senate Committee on Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications voted 8 to 6 along party lines Thursday to advance the appointment of former DFL state Sen. Ellen Anderson to the Senate floor without recommendation.
If the Senate votes not to confirm her she would lose her job. During a lengthy two-hour hearing, lawmakers repeatedly asked Anderson about her previous political positions. But Anderson insisted she will keep an open mind at the PUC.
"We have a long tradition of appointing legislators to the Public Utilities Commission," Anderson said. "There's lots of other people that have served as well, but there have certainly been legislation appointed a number of times. And I think whatever party they're from and whatever their background is, they have all gone on to be able to set those views aside."
Anderson served 19 years in the Legislature, but Republican Sen. Julie Rosen of Fairmont said the committee had major concerns about her appointment.