Security fence returns to Capitol amid anti-Line 3 demonstration

The Minnesota Department of Administration reinstalled the costly security fence around the Capitol and once again closed the interior to the public.

A security fence surrounds the entire exterior of the Capitol amid a four day anti-Line 3 demonstration. (Anthony Gockowski/Alpha News)

The Minnesota Department of Administration announced the closure of the Minnesota State Capitol this week and reinstalled a security fence around the entire exterior of the building.

The agency cited “multiple days of events with thousands of attendees” as justification for the “public safety precaution.” The closure of the interior of the building was a decision made at the request of the Minnesota State Patrol.

The fence initially went up in late May of 2020 amid the George Floyd riots and was removed a year later on June 1. During the Derek Chauvin trial, Gov. Tim Walz defended the prolonged presence of the security fence and said it would give “our fellow Minnesotans the space they deserve to call for change.”

The fence costs roughly $8,000 a month, not including the estimated $72,000 in install and tear-down fees. One document shows a bill of over $116,000 from the fence vendor, Keller Fence.

Sen. Justin Eichorn expressed his opposition to the Capitol fence being reinstalled, saying, “we shouldn’t be using our tax dollars to keep putting up barriers between the people and their government.”

Anti-Line 3 organizations hosted a four-day “Treaties Not Tar Sands” demonstration at the Capitol this week, calling their rally “mass civil disobedience” where they would demand “the immediate cancellation of Line 3.”

Among the attendees were Democrats such as Rep. Emma Greenman, Rep. Jamie Becker-Finn, Sen. Mary Kunesh and several others.

One of the event organizers, Winona LaDuke of Honor the Earth, has a history of interfering with the construction of the pipeline in addition to coming under fire for defending and maintaining a relationship with an accused pedophile.

Teresa LaDuke, the program manager for Honor the Earth, seemed to call for terror attacks against Line 3 infrastructure last month.

Also on the calendar at the Minnesota Capitol is a medical freedom rally on the upper mall and a voting rights rally on the lower mall, both happening this Saturday.


Megan Olson
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Megan Olson is a 2020 graduate of the University of Minnesota with degrees in political science and history. She works in public affairs in addition to serving on the Legislative Advisory Council for School District 196. She is also on the school board for FIT academy, a charter school in Apple Valley.