All 59 members of the House Republican caucus – including all three legislators representing Douglas County – condemned the violence and violent rhetoric at events that took place last week in Washington D.C. and Saint Paul.

The local lawmakers who signed a letter saying that violence, destruction and threats have no place in the political process were Reps. Paul Anderson, Jeff Backer and Mary Franson.

The letter, issued Monday afternoon, Jan. 11, stated:

“We, the undersigned members of the Minnesota House of Representatives, unequivocally condemn the violence and violent rhetoric at the events in Washington D.C. and Saint Paul on Jan. 6. Those who participated in criminal destruction of property and assaults on our law enforcement officials at the United States Capitol should be arrested and prosecuted, and those who made threats of violence at the rally in Saint Paul should be investigated and held accountable. We must all come together and affirm that violence, destruction, and threats – no matter the context – should be condemned and have no place in our political process.”

Franson was among six House Republicans who attended a “Storm the Capitol” rally in St. Paul, which took place at the same time as the riot at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. The St. Paul protest was peaceful but included threatening rhetoric from speakers who questioned the validity of the election and called for violence, civil war and casualties, according to media reports.

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The comments made in St. Paul were threatening enough that the Minnesota State Patrol went to the governor’s residence and took Gov. Walz’s 14-year-old son to a safe place while he cried wondering where his dog was, according to Walz, who spoke during a virtual event hosted by Forum News Service on Monday.

Franson didn’t create controversial Facebook meme

Franson has been taking some heat for posting an image on her personal Facebook page that shows a fake Lego set entitled, “Capitol Invasion” and includes toy figures of armed Trump supporters. She included the comment, “Too soon?” The posting has since been removed.

On Wednesday afternoon, Jan. 13, Franson contacted the Echo Press to say that she did not create the meme. She said it was created on Twitter by an anti-Trump Democrat, adam.the.creator, and he included this tweet with it: “These fools out here (are) literally playing games with our democracy.”

Franson said she often posts memes from others on her own Facebook page and there is no cost to taxpayers.

Political analyst, Blois Olson, mentioned the Facebook post in his daily Minnesota tip sheet.

“There’s no space for humor from Lego memes,” Olson wrote. “There’s nothing funny about an act of Civil War. Nothing.”