ST. PAUL, Minn., July 24 (UPI) -- A former Minnesota Senate Republican staff member says he was fired for an extramarital affair with the party's majority leader, and is suing the state.
The St. Paul Pioneer Press reported Michael Brodkorb was fired from is $90,000-a-year job as state Senate Republicans' communications director in December after his relationship with former Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch became public.
The suit says Koch would testify Brodkorb was fired because of the affair, the Pioneer Press reported. It claims discrimination because Brodkorb was treated differently than female staff, and seeks more than $50,000.
Brodkorb attorney Phil Villaume said he and his client had been trying to reach a settlement and were disappointed a suit had to be filed, the newspaper said.
Senate Majority Leader Dave Senjem said the suit is "without any merit whatsoever" and he's not interested in a settlement, the report said.
"Along with our attorneys, we will do everything in our power to protect the interests of the taxpayers," Senjem said in a statement.
The Pioneer Press said the state Senate's legal bills in the case reached nearly $85,000 by the end of May, but Republican leaders said that was when the last bill was received.