Politics Friday: A pair of first-term senators reflect on their first session, and the debate over legal marijuana

Two women pose for a photo
Sen. Clare Oumou Verbeten, DFL-St. Paul and Sen. Zaynab Mohamed, DFL-Minneapolis.
Ben Hovland | MPR News

Minnesota voters made history in Nov. 2022 when they elected three Black woman to the state senate — a first in the 165 years of Minnesota statehood.  

MPR News host Mike Mulcahy talks with Sen. Zaynab Mohamed, DFL-Minneapolis, and Sen. Clare Oumou Verbeten, DFL-St. Paul, about their first legislative session and the perspective they brought to the chamber.

Later in the hour, two Republicans from the cannabis conference committee explain their approach to a final version of the bill to legalize marijuana. And MPR News political reporters explain what you can expect from the Minnesota Legislature as the session nears adjournment.

Two men smiling in side by side photos
From left to right: Sen. Jordan Rasmusson, R-Fergus Falls, and Rep. Nolan West, R-Blaine
Courtesy photos


  • Sen. Zaynab Mohamed, DFL-Minneapolis  

  • Sen. Clare Oumou Verbeten, DFL-St. Paul 

  • Rep. Nolan West, R-Blaine  

  • Sen. Jordan Rasmusson, R-Fergus Falls 

  • Dana Ferguson is a politics reporter for MPR News.  

  • Brian Bakst is a politics reporter for MPR News. 

Subscribe to the Politics Friday podcast on: Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or RSS. 

Use the audio player above to listen to the full conversation.    

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