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Reality Check: Dayton And His Veto Spree

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(credit: CBS) Pat Kessler
Pat Kessler knows Minnesota politics. He's been on the beat long...
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By Pat Kessler, WCCO-TV

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – After vetoing the entire Republican agenda, Gov. Mark Dayton has distinguished himself as one of the most veto-happy governors Minnesota has ever had.

In the last week, Dayton vetoed the Republican budget, the tax bill, the Voter ID bill, two anti-abortion bills and a congressional redistricting bill.

“I’ve just vetoed what they passed and sent to me that i couldn’t support and agree to,” Dayton said.


Dayton might be the ‘veto-ing-est’ chief executive Minnesota’s ever had. In the 5 months since taking office in January, Dayton vetoed 19 bills, which is more than former Gov. Tim Pawlenty vetoed in his entire first term.


This is not even counting the constitutional amendment banning gay marraige.

Dayton vetoed that, too, even though he doesn’t have a constitutional right to do so.

Why so many vetoes?

“There were a significant number of bills I couldn’t support, ” Dayton said.


Dayton’s vetoes are noteworthy, but not record setting. The record goes to Pawlenty: He vetoed 79 bills in part or in full last year alone. He also set an 8-year record for the most vetoes (299) by any Minnesota governor.

Dayton’s veto total is now edging closer to 25.

Dayton says he hopes to meet with Republican leaders next week to talk about the state budget and making bills he won’t veto.

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