ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Senate’s lead Republican on transportation is signaling openness to more spending than his caucus leaders have said they will agree to.

Sen. Joe Gimse told Capitol reporters Thursday that he would consider voting for proposals to raise revenue as long as the money doesn’t come from taxes. The Willmar Republican said he would consider money from gambling, surcharges or fees.

Budget talks have stalled as Republican leaders insist on a $34 billion spending limit and Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton pushes to add nearly $2 billion to that, mainly from new high-end income taxes.

Gimse says he hopes to avoid a government shutdown that would start July 1 without a budget deal.

He has been touring the state and says a shutdown would unnecessarily idle about 20,000 construction workers.

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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (4)
  1. Village Idiot says:

    Just call it a surcharge on the top 2% on the income tax they pay. Wow, a compromise!

  2. Jason says:

    Very colorful. Great talking points.

  3. Bill Clinton says:

    Will the pitchfork crowd go after the top 10% next year? The top 25%. Perhaps we can make it easy and the bottom 51% can attack the top 49%…America is doomed. Civil war is just around the corner.

  4. Guy says:

    How about a “surcharge” on out of state trust funds. (Yah – I mean yours Gov.)

    Lets see how big of an increase you want then….

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