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No Sign Of Breakthrough As Minn. Faces $5B Deficit

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Top legislative Republicans and Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton remain divided on how to fix a $5 billion deficit as the legislative session enters its final four weeks.

Legislative leaders embarked on a statewide tour Monday from St. Paul to push their plan to eliminate the budget gap without state tax increases. Dayton was interviewed on Minnesota Public Radio, where he talked up his proposal to raise taxes on top earners.

Both sides are claiming public support while criticizing each other.

House Speaker Kurt Zellers says Dayton’s tax plan would hurt the middle class, while Dayton says Republicans are hiding the pain of spending cuts by using calculations not approved by his administration.

The governor and legislative leaders are scheduled to meet over breakfast Tuesday as lawmakers return from a weeklong break.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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