Laura Bishop, the commissioner of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, resigned today after the senate refused to confirm her appointment.
Republicans hold a majority of the senate in the state and party leaders have informed Gov. Tim Walz that Bishops appointment will not be confirmed.
"It has been an honor to serve Minnesotans in this role. However, I will not allow the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency to be politicized. The work is too important," Bishop said. "I look forward to continued work to protect our state's waters, air, land, and climate for future generations of Minnesotans."
Walz said in a statement that he's "extremely disappointed in the Republicans in the Senate," accusing the group of politicizing Bishop's appointment despite her accomplishments and resume.
It's disgraceful. Senate Republicans chose to use taxpayer dollars to play partisan politics with an agency that’s charged with protecting Minnesotans from the effects of climate change. Commissioner Bishop is qualified, and her resignation is a loss for the future of Minnesota. https://t.co/CH7Ukv17wz— Governor Tim Walz (@GovTimWalz) July 6, 2021
Bishop is now one of multiple top commissioners to either resign or be removed from office. Last year, Commerce Commissioner Steve Kelley and Commissioner of Labor and Industry Nancy Leppink were voted out.
MPCA Deputy Commissioner Peter Tester will serve as the temporary commissioner of the department.
The Minnesota DFL responded to the news with the following statement: "Let us be clear about what happened today: Senate Republicans forced the resignation of the Commissioner of our Pollution Control Agency in order to defend big polluters, exact revenge on Governor Walz for his strong leadership during a once-in-a-generation public health crisis, and harm our ability to be responsible stewards of our environment. Senator Paul Gazelka's pathetic temper tantrum just goes to show that Republicans will not let divided government work for the people of Minnesota."