Esme’s Blog: Minnesota Enters the Record Books

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — At midnight Sunday July 10 Minnesota will enter the record books, breaking the record for the longest state shutdown in the nation’s history.

Whose record are we breaking?

Our own. We set the record back in 2005. Only seven states have shut down since 2002, and Minnesota has the two longest shutdowns.

What is most disturbing about the current shutdown is that there is no sign of movement. Every push towards compromise has collapsed.

This week, Gov. Mark Dayton offered up a $1 cigarette tax, which was the very thing that helped broker a deal in 2005. The governor at that time, Tim Pawlenty, chose to call it a “cigarette fee”. But a fee or tax by any name got state employees working again, got roads repaired and got child care benefits flowing.

Something has to give. Or we could just let the clock continue to tick, with every second setting a new record in leading the nation in inefficiency.

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