September 7, 1999
SENATOR JOHNSON PASSES AWAY
DFL State Senator Janet Johnson, Chair of the Senate Transportation Budget Division, passed away August 21. Johnson, 59, was diagnosed in early July with a malignant brain tumor and had been undergoing chemotherapy at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Johnson, who was first elected to the Minnesota Senate in 1990, was known as a strong advocate for the environment and mass transit.
A special election will be held on November 2, 1999 to fill Johnson’s vacant seat. The vacancy again may whittle down what was once a seemingly insurmountable DFL majority. At the beginning of 1999, DFLers enjoyed a 42 to 24 majority. Today, that majority stands at 39 to 26. With the exception of one legislative race, Republicans have won every legislative special election held in the 1990’s.