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OFF BEAT: Minnesota Senate aide claims bias after post-affair firing

Posted On: Jul. 24, 2012 12:00 AM CST

A former Minnesota Senate aide who was fired after having an affair with the state’s female former Senate majority leader is claiming he was discriminated against and was the victim of a double standard because female legislative staffers who’ve engaged in similar relationships with male lawmakers didn’t lose their jobs.

In a suit filed Monday in Ramsey County, Minn., District Court in St. Paul, Michael Brodkorb claimed wrongful termination, invasion of privacy and defamation. The suit against the state of Minnesota, the Minnesota Senate and Secretary of the Senate Cal Ludeman seeks at least $50,000.

According to reports, Mr. Brodkorb was fired in December from his job as the Republican caucus communications director after having an affair with then-Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch. Ms. Koch resigned her Senate leadership post and indicated she would not seek re-election.

In a statement, current Senate Majority Leader Dave Senjem, a Republican, said Mr. Brodkorb’s suit was “without merit” and that the Senate was guilty of no wrongdoing in Mr. Brodkorb’s dismissal.