Dayton Travels To St. Cloud To Discuss The Budget

ST. CLOUD, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton hit the road Tuesday to tell a friendly St. Cloud audience his side of the budget impasse with Republican lawmakers, a standoff that has led to a state government shutdown that is now in its 12th day.

Dayton appeared at a roundtable forum at Apollo High School that focused on special education funding. More than 100 people attended the event, and many in the audience gave Dayton a standing ovation as he entered the room.

The governor said he’s traveling around the state to “communicate to Minnesotans what’s at stake for them” and “how important it is that all of our voices are heard so that we have a balanced, reasonable compromise solution, hopefully as quickly as possible.”

Republicans have remained united against Dayton’s proposal to raise income taxes on the highest earners. Rep. King Banaian, R-St. Cloud, was among several Republican lawmakers who attended the event. Banaian told Minnesota Public Radio News he won’t support new taxes to plug the budget gap.

“I do not believe we need new revenues,” Banaian said.

The Star Tribune reports the Republicans were chastised by several audience members, some of whom wore T-shirts supporting Dayton and public employee unions.

“Where’s your conscience? It’s about us who sent you there,” said Anthony Akubue, a professor of environmental and technological studies at St. Cloud State University.

Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch said she called Dayton on Tuesday morning to suggest she and House Speaker Kurt Zellers participate in the St. Cloud event as well as others the Democratic governor has scheduled this week. But Dayton’s press secretary Katharine Tinucci said Dayton told Koch he’d prefer the GOP leaders spend their time working on a counter-proposal to budget offers he has made.

In St. Paul, the top Democrat in the Minnesota House on Tuesday called for six House Republicans to cross party lines to support Dayton’s proposal for new income taxes and end the government shutdown.

House Minority Leader Paul Thissen held a news conference outside the state Capitol with six empty folding chairs, saying he and members of his caucus have reached out to Republican lawmakers. He declined to identify any of the Republicans.

Zellers said Tuesday that no members of his Republican caucus would cross party lines to vote for a tax increase.

He and Koch held a news conference to again urge Dayton to call a special session allowing them to pass a “lights-on” bill that would restart government while negotiations continue, and pieces of the budget where there is agreement.

There are no new budget talks scheduled.

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

  • Brent

    Hows that new governor working out for you dems? People are finding out gov shutdown not a big deal, except of course those that voted for this dufuss.

    • Jake

      Do we need any more proof than this tour by the Governor that this has all been political and not about good policy? Seriously. How can you argue that limiting the increase at 6% is “draconian” and “heartless” but the Governor can shut down state government and not consider it “draconian” or “heartless”? This is absurd.

      If the Governor had any class or heart, he would make the statement that he believes the government is underfunded, but sign the budget to keep the government going. The DFL should then campaign on a higher taxes/higher spending platform. If the people agree that this is needed, we will vote out the Republicans. If not, they retain the majority.

      The current approach shows Dayton is willing to try to inflict pain on all Minnesotans to get financial gains for his political allies, namely the people paid buy the projects he wants to fund.

      • ya ya betcha

        He is working fine, standing up for most what is right, how are the republicans working for ya with their no compromise!! Feel sorry for them next election cause the are outta here!!

        • Dayton will lose this round

          How is it “right” to shutdown a state and hold us hostage because he wants to raise taxes and throwing a fit until he gets what he wants? He could have called a “lights on” session, but didn’t.

          • GOP will lose this round

            Why do you think Dayton is holding us hostage, what about the Reps. they have a responsibility too its not all Dayton, if anyone is holding us hostage its the Reps. with their no compromise attitude and we won’t budge until we get our way.
            And why should Dayton call a special session until the budget is agreed upon all that will do if he does is nothing because they can’t agree on anything now so they will all be doing nothing and the special session will go on and on and cost the state even more money.

            • Dayton will lose this round

              He could have called a session for intermim funding, but didn’t. And while I argree that the Republicans also need to compromise, Dayton is much weaker politically. Dayton only won with 44.6% of the vote. More people voted for Emmer and Horner than voted for Dayton.

              And the legislature could have passed intermim funding. It sounds like you are a radical that supports anything any Democrat does.

          • Joe

            They ALL should be fired for NOT doing the job they were suppose to do period.

        • Really?

          I will feel sorry for deer in the headlights Dayton!! He’s out of here for sure. Look how he shut his senate office down cause he was scared. Tell him to cut back on the drugs. The side effects are deafening!! This is one time spoiled rich boy will not get his way!!

    • Louis

      I think Dayton should hold out for 30% increase, and offer free abortions to anyone who wants one. Maybe he can set us up with a deal where he can tax North Dakota and all us Minnesotans can sit home and drink beer. ND is in the Black and we are in the red IT’S OUR RIGHT!

    • Really?

      Ever since Obama took office, our country is failing one state at a time and history will show how the liberals have ruined this country!! Facts don’t lie!

    • Highway Patrolman


      • Joe

        Because he is a rich ASS Hole

      • LARRY


    • Tafera

      What you be takin bout? Give me my welfare money. I had the kids and now I deserve more money.

      • Joe

        ME TOO, GIVE ME MY MONEY I DESERVE, so I can sleep all day, party all night doing drugs and making more babies and getting into trouble. Oh yeah.

    • Phyliss Kahn

      Does Dayton take a State Paid For LIMO to his AA Meeting?

    • Phyliss Kahn

      The drugs that some gangs brings to Minnesota from Chicago are loosing their potency because it takes like 1 day longer to drive the distance. A high speed train will get the drugs to Minnesota faster so the gangs can get more money. Why is the Legislature stalled on this issue?

  • Joe Hanson

    Where’s Lt. Governor Prettner Solon?

    Did Governor Dayton deem her nonessential?

    Governor Mark Dayton, too incompetent to govern…

  • Deb

    Governor is GREAT, republicans suck!

    • Jake

      No need to shout, Mrs. Dayton.

    • Really?

      Too bad dems swallow!!!

    • Ralfael

      You are obviously on welfare. Get a job you loser!


        Well I am neither on welfare or any government aid. If all you Republicans think your so hot than your fooling yourself worse than the Dems are at running things. They are both idiots and so are you because you don’t realize that both parties are hurting us not just one. All you well educated people should go back to school or step back and take a look how they both are sitting there wanting to be king of the hill and screw the people. Your all just as bad jumping down other peoples throats and not seeing the bigger picture we are all screwed with both parties in office.

  • Deb

    Hold strong Dayton!

    • Fail Dayton

      Hold strong Dayton and keep government shutdown for weeks, months, years if you have to. I’m sure the government workers can hold out!

  • Indy

    Great, Brent! Thank God for Dayton. The Middle class has to have someone that will fight the Republican push for Minnesotans to be paying for the rich mans subsidies.The people of Minnesota realize that they made a mistake voting tea party republicans in. There is no doubt republicans will be fired come next election. Bye Bye Repubs

    • Taxed enough

      Speak for yourself Indy. The people of Minnesota are not realizing they made a mistake quite the opposite as a matter of fact. I am happy just the way things are going as well as alot of people I have talked to. I have even talked to State workers who are more mad at Dayton than they are Republicans because a lights on bill could have been signed but the good ol Gov decided it was HIS way or no way.

      • SO SAD

        Yes, but the lights on bill was a disgrace – the republicans putting in more social issues to pass. Why can’t the bill be signed without all the other issues being attached to it?

      • 82nd Airborne

        Why do you think we should have religous pork in a budget? You think that’s ok? I sure don’t. I’m glad he didn’t sign it. Keep your BS religion out of government.

    • Brent

      I am the middle class and I am not for the rich, I am for the citizen that is tired of paying taxes for social programs we don’t believe in. No new taxes for anyone and if Dayton was against the rich he would not have proposed a cig tax that hits the poor more than anyone.

      • Indy

        But you are a republican Brent. If not you have been listening to too much right wing talk radio or TV. You must be a smoker too. Only a smoker would whine about a cancer stick tax. If Minnesotans would all stop smoking and drinking and become more active you do not realize how much money the government would save and how much better people like you would feel.

        • Stacy

          Leave it to the left wing, if you can’t get money from one special group then attack another. If the Dems want more taxes then put a plan out that taxes everyone. But no you just want taxes as long as it does not effect you.

          • Jim

            “If the Dems want more taxes then put a plan out that taxes everyone. But no you just want taxes as long as it does not effect you.”

            Stacy, Mark Dayton is one of the richest people in Minnesota. You knew that, right? I personally think it’s a terrible plan to only increase taxes on a small portion of the population, but your argument is pretty weak.

            • purplefox

              Has Mark Dayton released his taxes? I read that most of his trust fund is in North Dakota, so it’s protected from Minnesota taxes.

        • Brent

          I am an independant, do not smoke. I wish they would ban smoking as it kills. But I also realize they never will because the feds and state need the taxes. PS it is the independant vote that will determine both the fed and state election in 2012 and we do not want taxes period..

          • Brent


            You can not keep running gov. without bringing in revenue now and then it just doesn’t work that way, if you never raise some kind of tax where do you think the money is coming from to pay for everything, look at what T-Paw put the state through he said he wouldn’t raise taxes but added fees and our property tax went up 200% and still going up. Each state gets some FED money for certain projects but if we don’t raise revenue than we can’t pay for better roads, bridges that don’t crumble, etc. Our country was in a surplus when Clinton was president and he raised taxes and then Bush got in there and bye bye surplus and now a huge deficit and if you look at the polls most people want to both cut spending and raise taxes on the very rich so the GOP is not listening to the majority of the people and come 2012 elections they will be gone.

        • 82nd Airborne

          “If Minnesotans would all stop smoking and drinking and become more active you do not realize how much money the government would save and how much better people like you would feel.”

          You cannot legislate what people do. It isn’t up to you to stop all Minnesotans from drinking and smoking, and it isn’t up to you to say Minnesota would be better if everybody did. It isn’t up to you, sweetheart.

          • Pauly

            What do you mean? Do you forget that Minnesota loves to have high taxes on alcohol and tobacco? They don’t care if you feel or look better

        • Joe

          Where do you think most of the taxmoney from smoking and drinking goes too? Hummm,,,,
          Can’t wait until there is NO more middle class,,,,

    • Really?

      I’m sure Dayton will run scared real soon. I hope he doesn’t let the door hit his RICH ass on the way out. Dirty dog!! He keeps his personal chef? Now that’s relating to the average person. Boy you’ll buy anything!!

  • Indy

    Back before Clinton’s term the republicans promised that if there was a democratic president they would not allow him to govern. They kept their promise and have been disruptive from day one on Obama’s term. Their position has moved down to the state level in Minnesota. Republicans will loose in both National and State levels come next election. Bye Bye Republicans. Dayton met half way and is willing to compromise. The people of Minnesota are nearly 70% in favor of a balanced approach instead of all on the backs of the middle class. Republicans are not working for Minnesotans. They have been all along for years working for the corporations and Americas most richest citizens. It is very evident that things have not changed with the last election. If anything they have become worse.

    • Brent

      Name one thing in the budget that is ‘on the backs of the middle class’. Its a slogan and you bought off on it.

      • Indy

        It is a fact Brent. How about the Republicans wanting to cut social security instead of cutting the loopholes and tax breaks from the rich? How about total state and local taxes as a percentage of statewide personal income have fallen from 2002 to 2006. However, only the very wealthiest Minnesota households are benefiting from this decline. The vast majority of Minnesota households have seen their state and local tax bite increase over this period.
        No slogan no buy off. Just hard facts.

        • Brent

          ss is a fed issue not state. no changes to tax code in minnesota is being proposed except by dayton. No facts just spin.

          • Indy

            Yes Brent it is a Federal issue. But it is still a Republican attack on the middle class in which the Republican reps of Minnesota support. It is the same mindset of robbing from the middle class to support the rich that we have with the Republicans both at the federal level and in Minnesota. It is all tied together.

          • Citizen

            Uh, Brent, as you pointed out taxes on cigarettes would hit the poor and middle class the hardest, as would sales taxes. Poor and middle Americans spend most of their income–not save–so they pay most of the taxes. The wealthy with a lot of discretionary income left after paying for their LOW taxes and life’s necessities, can save. The U.S. economy is a consumer economy. The poor and middle class are tapped out because of an erosion of real buying power because of stagnant to falling wages and lack of job growth over the last 30 years while the wealthy everywhere have seen their taxes lowered, their income skyrocket, and their savings increase. This is a recipe for disaster and now there is a money liquidity problem–a liquidity trap. A simplified version for you is that the wealthy are not spending–they are hoarding. And the poor and middle class are mostly spending on necessities or borrowing to keep afloat. Spending is maxed for them. Neither is good. If the feds cut social security, there will be a further erosion of spending by seniors. That sure won’t help the economy. Cutting Medicare will further erode seniors’ ability to pay for medical needs and will send them to Medicaid even more quickly. Taxes on the wealthy are at their 2nd lowest rate ever for the wealthy. The lowest taxes ever were right before the Great Depression, and the U.S. is headed that way again because of foolish emphasis on lowering deficits and not on stimulating the economy and creating jobs. Just a few facts that I don’t expect YOU, BRENT, or any of the other CONservative apologists let get in the way of your delusions.

            • Josey

              So again its up to the “rich” top provide the jobs for the poor, pay more taxes, spend more money, stop saving or hoarding as you call it all it an effort to do their part in society.
              I say its time for everyone to do their part and quit whining about the rich and what they dont have.
              Jealousy and complaining about someone eles fortunes just makes you a pitiful person.

              • mj

                Josey,you got it right. Nobody “owes” you nothing. I pity those who envy the rich.

              • Recall

                It’s not so much a judgment call of who wants what or why—It’s crazy fact. Here’s a cheat sheet for ya and you decide to agree or disagree with Citizen’s claims.
                9 factors interacting with one another leading to the Great Depression
                1. Debt liquidation and distress selling
                2. Contraction of the money supply as bank loans are paid off
                3. A fall in the level of asset prices
                4. A still greater fall in the net worths of business, precipitating
                5. A fall in profits
                6. A reduction in output, in trade and in employment.
                7. Pessimism and loss of confidence
                8. Hoarding of money
                9. A fall in nominal interest rates and a rise in deflation adjusted
                interest rates

                • Recall

                  No, no Josey. I guess I should first state that I’m a flat tax libertarian. Far from a democrat. But her claims that the common man (middle class) and the historical references mimic where we have already been and very well could return. Take a second today and google or whatever the Great Depression. It’s scary stuff and the housing correlation you make is not only 100% on the money but, again, scary replication of where we have been before.

                • Josey

                  Its Nice to see you are standing up for Citizen. I am in the Mortgage business and most of you facts on your cheat sheet can be directly attributed to an over valuation of home prices in the past 10 years.
                  When values began to level out 6 years ago people were unable to refinance their lifestyle every 3 years paying off credit cards, auto loans and second mortgages. Items 1,2,3,4,7,8 & 9 are all direct consequences or the housing market. To try and pin these on one party or the other is a bit of a stretch.

                • Josey

                  What is scary is how far back in History we can go to see a trend. Google “Tupil Bulb Market of the 1600’s” Are markets are pretty much the same as they have been over the past 400 years. Market speculation has been around a long time and will continue to be around. The ones that get hurt are the inexperienced that look to make a quick buck.
                  History will repeat itself, that’s just the way it is.

                • Citizen

                  @Josey. Overvaluation of home prices and overbuilding of homes. When the go-go housing market started, many of my friends will tell you that I stated it could not last because who was going to buy all those homes–especially once the boomers started retiring and wanting out of their houses. There is a baby bust behind the boomers, one small boomlet, and another bust coming. Do immigrants–illegal or legal–buy homes? Not so much. Didn’t take a rocket scientist to see the housing bust coming. You bankers just made sure you got “yours” before it happened! Plenty of fraudulent lending to people who should never have gotten a mortgage on a house. You are correct that both parties are at fault. But when it comes to going after the money….well, there are plenty of chiselers out there.

                • Common sense

                  Can anyone say deregulation?!?!?!?!?! God forbid though if the banks can’t send in representation to lobby people to deregulate!!!!

                  It’s kind of funny how the banks put the blame on people who took out mortgages they couldn’t afford, as if they tried to tell them they couldn’t afford it, and it was the banks and their politicians that deregulated the banks. Isn’t that a contradiction moral philosophy?

            • Brent

              dribble, go back to bed retired gov worker.

              • Recall

                Citizen you are right, again.

    • Julie

      What do you call Daytons proposal for liq and cig tax if not a tax on the middle class? The repubs nixed that proposal defending the middle class along with all citizens. Dayton does not care who he taxes as long as he can tax someone.

      • jimmy


        What do you call Daytons proposal for liq and cig tax if not a tax on the middle class?


        • Jake

          That would be compromise in the same way as me telling my wife I want to use the services of a prostitute named Judy and, when she objects, proposing I go to one named Mary instead.

          The issue is restraining overall taxation, not where it comes from.

          • Sandy

            LOL, this is probably the best comparison I have heard yet……thanks for the laugh.

    • dan

      Dayton hasn’t compromised on anything! Quit smoking your wacky weed and accept that fact. He is another “rich boy” that doesn’t even have his money in Minnesota! The Democrats all want to tax the “rich” but it never applies to them because they don’t pay taxes since it is all inheritied money. Grow up Minnesota! Enough of the taxes and spending already!!

  • Indy

    Julie. It was an attempt to try and compromise. I think of it myself as the gov caving into the republicans. It is evident that the republicans interest is in disallowing the governor the ability to govern. Republicans are not about the people of Minnesota. If they were they would compromise on the fact that nearly 70% of Minnesotans are wanting a balanced approach to this budget fix. I will repeat: (Not all on the backs of the Middle class)

    • Jake

      It doesn’t limit his ability to govern. It limits his abilituy to raise taxes overall. If the Governor wants compromise, he should propose agreeing to the Republicans overall budget number in exchange for a reduction in middle class tax rates offset by an increase on upper income brackets.

      The Republicans get restrained spending and the Dems get a balance closer to pre-2000.

  • jimmy

    How can the Republicans serve two masters? They swore an oath to the state of Minnesota then signed a pledge with the economic terrorist group known as the Tax Payers League. Those Republicans should be jailed for treason.

  • Julie

    So his comprise on taxing the rich is to tax the poor? That makes no sense and you must be on the same meds he is.

    • Indy

      Julie, If you are referring to the cig tax, just keep on smoking and there is a very strong chance you will be on “radio active” meds sonner or later. Who will pay your bill? The Tax Payer will. If you don’t smoke the next person that blows smoke into your face will be increasing your chances.

      • we

        We need a flat tax for everyone!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        • Indy

          I thought about that. A lot of people mentioned it. But for now an equal one will sure help and will be more of a possibility of happening. One that the rich pays the same rate as the middle class.

          • Billy

            Hey dope, the rich already pay at a higher tax rate than the middle class. A flat tax will be a bonus for the rich and create taxable income for the 50% who dont currently pay taxes. Keep thinking about it. Wow

            • we

              @Billy Your the DOPE the rich pay lower %rate then the middle class!!!!!!!!

              • Billy

                Minnesots State income tax bracket is even more simple for you to understand:

                $22,770 to $74,779 is at 7%

                > $74,780 is 8%

                What math class did you fail in grade school? You obviously didnt make it to high school.

                • Dave

                  It’s higher than that actually.
                  Single > $74780 you pay $4884.91 + 7.85%, so if you’re “Rich” enough to make $75k after taxes, you will pay 14.36% in State Income Tax……..if you don’t believe me take a look at your M1 Instructions and go to tax tables section.

                  The more you make, the more it will diminish slightly. At 150k, single, it equates to 11.75% and Dayton wants another 2% on top of that.

                  Double the income numbers if married filing jointly.

                • Joshua

                  This article may help you understand the regressive tax in Minnesota. When most of us speak of taxes we are not just talking about income tax. Also you have to factor in the fact that the more money you make the more deductions are available to you.


                • Alfred

                  Trying to explain math to a liberal is like try to explain quantum physics to a cat.

                  They just don’t get it. And still, they’re arrogant.

              • Billy

                @ WE

                Another dope! Check out the 2011 Federal Tax Rates for married couples:

                $69,000 to 139,350 25%
                $139,351 to $212,300 28%
                $212,301 to 379,150 33%
                > 379,151 35%
                I hope these simple facts dont confuse you. 35% is higher than 25%.

                • we

                  Go to the state taxes Billy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                • Michael

                  After they take all there taxes deductions, ship money out of the country, and use all their tax loop holes.

          • Stacy

            They already pay a higher rate. Learn to do math.

      • Julie

        dont smoke but I do know that poor people will give up food for vices. They have children and we end up feeding the kids.

        • Indy

          Julie, The poor are giving up food already because of cutting funding by Republicans. The middle class is on the edge of a cliff because of them. Dayton is trying to protect those people. The tax dollars I pay I am praying that it goes towards those that are needy. I hope that my tax is not being applied somehow to subsidize a rich mans bank account.

          • Josey


            What food funding have the Republicans cut?

          • Daytons soupline

            Indy, the poor are selling their foodstamps. And its not because of Republicans.

  • Indy

    To Governor Dayton:
    If you or any of your staff are reading this today please “Keep on truckin” The people of Minnesota need someone in the Government like you that is willing to fight for the middle class.

    • Stacy

      Keep on trucking all the way out of Minnesota!

    • Fail Dayton

      Yes Governor Dayton, if you are reading this today….please keep state shutdown for weeks, months, years…we the only middle class state workers can last the hold out forever…please don’t compromise on a partial shutdown…this broad state shutdown is much…much…much better for all!

      • Indy

        My Gosh it is easy to spot a Republican. Dayton has been compromising all along. The Republicans will not budge one inch at the State AND Federal levels. You think that Minnesotans are in trouble now just wait and see if a Federal level shut down happens. Minnesota will be in double deep do-do.
        Dayton tried Republicans lied.

        • Fail Dayton

          My Gosh it is easy to spot a Democrat. Keep spending and taxing and America will end up like Greece! Good plan Democrats!

  • kevin

    Indy, Obama being picked on. Give me a break. Two years into his term niether he or the dems. have given the citizens of the US a budget. How in the hell can that happen. Now Obama and Dayton want to raise taxes at the same time. There both NUTS.

    • Indy

      Keven, You were not connecting to what you were reading. Did you even read it at all? Let me repeat.

      #1 The people of Minnesota want a balanced approach to fixing the budget.

      #2 Back before Clinton’s term the republicans promised that if there was a democratic president they would not allow him to govern. They kept their promise and have been disruptive from day one on Obama’s term.

      If you Keven, cannot figure out how the hell #2 could happen there is no excuse for you accept for being a Republican or a rush fan.

      • Taxed enough

        Oh Yea Indy the republicans were so disruptive the first 2 years of Obama’s term that the debt increased, the unemployment increased and we have this wonderful health plan in place now that will surely help our economy in the future.

    • we

      It is all the Republicans holding him back!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • ME

        AAJ’s Report

        The Koch Brothers, big tobacco, insurance companies, and the drug industry: all behind the shadowy corporate front group known as the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). On the surface, ALEC is mostly comprised of thousands of state legislators, each paying a nominal fee to attend ALEC retreats and receive model legislation. In reality, corporations pay ALEC a king’s ransom to access legislators to distribute radical legislation that puts corporate interests over American workers and consumers.

        So, while the membership appears to be public sector, corporate money dominates ALEC. In fact, public sector membership dues account for only around one percent of ALEC’s annual revenues. ALEC claims to be nonpartisan, but its pro-corporate, anti-consumer mission is clear.

        Read about ALEC’s hand in protecting oil companies, chemical manufacturers and Wall Street banks in AAJ’s report here:

        ALEC: Ghostwriting the Law for Corporate America >>

        AAJ Release: Report Lifts Veil on ALEC’s Pro-Corporate, Anti-Consumer Mission >>


        Executive Summary:

        Few have ever heard of it, but the American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC, is the ultimate smoke filled back room.

        On the surface, ALEC’s membership is mostly comprised of thousands of state legislators. Each pays a nominal membership fee in order to attend ALEC retreats and receive model legislation. ALEC’s corporate contributors, on the other hand, pay a king’s ransom to gain access to legislators and distribute their corporate-crafted legislation.

        So, while the membership appears to be public sector, the bankroll is almost entirely private sector. In fact, public sector membership dues account for only around one percent of ALEC’s annual revenues. ALEC claims to be nonpartisan, but in fact its free-market, pro-business mission is clear.

        The result has been a consistent pipeline of special interest legislation being funneled into state capitols. Thanks to ALEC, 826 bills were introduced in the states in 2009 and 115 were enacted into law.

        Behind the scenes at ALEC, the nuts and bolts of lobbying and crafting legislation is done by large corporate defense firm Shook, Hardy & Bacon. A law firm with strong ties to the tobacco and pharmaceutical industries, it has long used ALEC’s ability to get a wide swath of state laws enacted to further the interests of its corporate clients.

        ALEC’s campaigns and model legislation have run the gamut of issues, but all have either protected or promoted a corporate revenue stream, often at the expense of consumers. For example, ALEC has worked on behalf of:

        •Oil companies to undermine climate change proponents;
        •Pharmaceutical manufacturers, arguing that states should be banned from importing prescription drugs;
        •Telecom firms to block local authorities from offering cheap or free municipally-owned broadband;
        •Insurance companies to prevent state insurance commissioners from requiring insurers to meet strengthened accounting and auditing rules;
        •Big banks, recommending that seniors be forced to give up their homes via reverse mortgages in order to receive Medicaid;
        •The asbestos industry, trying to shut the courthouse door to Americans suffering from mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases; and,
        •Enron to deregulate the utility industries, which eventually caused the U.S. to lose what the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) estimated as $5 trillion in market value.
        AAJ News
        Issue Resources
        Medical Negligence
        In the Courts
        Dangerous and Defective Products
        Foreign Manufacturer Accountability
        Forced Arbitration
        Why We Need the Civil Justice System
        The American Association for Justice

        July 12, 2011 at 1:27 pm | Reply | Report comment


  • common sence

    Make a new Treaty with the Indians.. Get rid of the old one. Put them in the same pool as the rest of us poor slobs. Tax the Casino’s

    • we


    • Common sense

      Yes! Yes and Yes!

      Or we could all stop going to the Indian Casino’s and go to Canterbury and RunnignAces (Forest Lake) when they reopen.

      • Michael

        Put toll booths at the entrance roads. Want to gamble, pay for it. Or, get the racino or some other gambling joint going. The indians are the ones paying the lobbiests to keep their gambling.

  • Frustrated Tax Payer

    The republicans have had to “compromise” or be over powered by the democrats for decades so the the dems could get more taxes and spend more money on entitlement programs. Margaret Kelliher forced her agenda and taxes on Pawlenty, even to the point of taking his tax blocking strategy to the Supremen Court. Be it Dayton or Obama, compromise means taxes, period. Enough!! After all the fluff is cut, if there still is not enough money to balance the budget, then cut all other spending by a flat percentage across the board. When the economy picks up again and the taxes are flowing in at a higher rate, then some thing can be considered for reinstatement. Jesse Ventura had a decent idea of reducing government in MN by eliminating two houses of government for a unicameral legislative goverment. That would not only reduce the number of politicians on the state payroll but there staff payrolls as well.

    • Indy

      That is a good one. Marget forcing her self onto Pawlenty. So our debt in Minnesota is Margret’s fault now. LMAO Did that come to you last night about midnight when you were sound asleep? Frustration, Frustrated Tax Payer, makes a person susceptible to some pretty awesome dreams. I suppose in you dream it was Margret that shuffled the books around to make it look like Pawlenty left Minnesota with a surplus for his presidential run also.

      • S

        Democrats delivered a bill for Pawlenty to sign. Things that Pawlenty did not like he tried to unallot. Most of those tactics got reversed. So the budget we got was presented to Pawlenty by Democrats. Who’s fault is it?

        • Alfred

          Facts to a liberal are like water to a duck’s back.

  • Newzie

    Close to $2 of every $10 that went into Americans’ wallets last year were payments like jobless benefits, food stamps, Social Security and disability, according to an analysis by Moody’s Analytics. In states hit hard by the downturn, like Arizona, Florida, Michigan and Ohio, residents derived even more of their income from the government.

  • Wow

    Wow…. You guys are hilarious thinking that Dayton is HELPiNG the middle class and poor. The gov is shut down. The poor that have help with child care aren’t receiving any and can’t send their kids to daycare while they work because it is too expensive. So the poor are losing their jobs! Just one of the MANY problems Dayton is creating. How about stop saying what the poor are thinking and ask them and the gov workers…… they are all against it

    • cindy

      The ones that WERE receiving Childcare assistance are the working parent that finallly got of welfare and are trying their best to make it. Most were with just a little help. Now those parents will lose their jobs because they lost their daycare and will be right back on welfare. I own a childcare center and 90% are on assistance. As of next monday 1/2 of my staff will be on unemployment as will 1/2 of the parents. OH yes this was a good move for MN. GOOD GRIEF! Yet guess what was NOT cut!?! Refugee assistance. ARE you kidding me!!! Struggling Minnesotans get nothing yet people from other countries do? There is just something real wrong with this picture. All I know is as of tomorrow I know of 19 more people asking for unemployment and emergency assistance. THANK YOU EVER SO MUCH, Mr Dayton Like you will EVER be in politics again

  • Mark

    Let’s end all the government programs!

    Social security? END IT ! Make grandma, grandpa and anyone who is 4 or older get a job! If they can’t work, let them die! decrease the surplus population!

    Medicare? If you can’t afford a doctor, DIE!!!

    Public education? the only school our population needs is the school of hard knocks! Teach your kids how to fill out a job application, they don’t need to know anything else!

    If all this happens, we will live in UTOPIA! Right?

    What will it take to get everyone to realize that if you don’t have more than 500 million or more, you are going to go under in this nation! 86% of the wealth in this nation is controlled by less than 20% of the population. Is this fair?

    When will we take to the streets, and protest this unfair economy?

    • Jack


      So you are saying that “anchor babies” and constant abusers of the system deserve to do nothing at have social security, medicare and thousands of other programs at their disposal? It’s supposed to function as a safety net, not a hammock.
      Wealth distribution doesn’t have anything to do with “fair”. You probably got a free education and decided to waste it on being a history major and didn’t learn anything about how communism and socialism always end up.

    • S

      Nice rant Mark. Let’s say your statement 86% of the wealth is controlled by 20% of the population is correct.

      You are saying that those 20% should little to no say in what they do with their own money? And that people like you know what to do with thier money better?

      May I suggest you focus your efforts and attention on earning more of your own money. You’d probably be a happier person due to your own new accomplishments. And you will not be son angry comparing yourself to the accomplishments of others.

      • Michael

        Missed the report last week about the wealthy or CEO increases? How about the CEO’s pay went up 28% since LAST YEAR!! And the rest of the population saw paycuts of 5% or more.

        • Mark

          Cudo’s to you Micheal ! It’s true but no one seems to see this, only the news on those who seem to be getting something for nothing, like just enough to survive on.

          As for Jack and S. There will be abusers in any system. But is it ok that a corporation like BP ruins the Gulf, pays little of the clean-up, and still gets substantial subsides that come out of the pockets of you and I?

          Or General Electric? last year alone, $86 BILLION IN PROFITS ! taxes on those profits: ZERO !!!!

          As for my education and work history, if it is any of you business. I hold degrees in Political science, sociology, and agriculture. I work 3 jobs. I am the parent of a special needs adult, and married for over 20 years.

          And socialism? I think the Scandinavians, who live under a Democratic-Socialist form of government are doing quite nicely, thank you?

          The only difference between the thoughts here are those who might have a heart for those less fortunate, and the “Greed” mentality of those who still believe Reagan was right with his “Trickle down” theory on economics.

          Hows that trickle working for ypu?

  • StraycatStrut

    Lowering the State Sales tax rate and expanding whats taxable. Yep…. for sure not a tax on the middle class or lower. Guess he’s going to tax food & clothing… lower the rate now….. and then raise the rate for the Dems in future years. $34 Billion is $6400 per man woman and child in MN currently and he says its not enough. He needs the boot in St Cloud…hope he’s using his Smart Car to get there.

  • Lo

    If you think raising taxes on the rich won’t effect the middle class or poor you are WRONG! Most of the rich are bussiness owners. And to make up for the tax hike they will have to raise prices on everything. So when the price of food, clothes and everything else goes up. Don’t complain if you were for raising taxes on the rich….

    • SO SAD

      If you haven’t noticed by now, the business owners have raised prices. Not only by the dollar amount, but the size of the packaging too. Things are getting smaller and the prices are getting higher.

      I agree that the governor should expand what is taxable. Sales tax should be expanded on things that are not necessary to live. Some food and clothing should be taxable, such as bathings suits and potato chips. These are not necessary items; you can live without them.

      Also, the government workers need to do their jobs. Why are the people on welfare for such a long period of time? Why are they collecting food stamps for as long as they have? Why are they living where they are (Section 8) for as long as they have? And as for social security and medicare, have workers followed-up on people collecting social security disability? Are they really disabled to work at all or maybe just that particiular job? Sounds to me the government has dropped the ball and wants us to pay for it.

    • we

      And then they will pay more TAXES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Claire


        Do you not read the post you are commenting on? You seem like an angry individual with all your !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That really doenst add much to your arguement you know. Please try and have more words in your post than punctuation marks and enlighten us with your brilliance

        • Donna

          OMG Claire,

          That was spot on! Keep up the good work

    • Michael

      They are already raising prices. Food prices are up as much as 20% this year.

  • Daytons soupline

    Hope your chef made you a good breakfast before your road trip. Is Tom Dooher with ya? Haven’t seen much of him lately.

    • we

      Get off the chef already!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Lo

    And the people buying the higher priced items will also pay more TAXES!!!

  • Daytons soupline

    Who made you king?

  • dan

    So why waste your time talking to Teachers and Administrators about the budget? They have already taken the tax the rich & spend like a drunken sailor theme to the bank.
    Why wouldnt you go into a Republican room and try to pursuade them into seeing it from your side of the aisle.
    This road campaign will only create more tension between Democrats and Republicans

  • MrB

    You have a lot of class, I truly hope you are single, I would feel extremely sorry for your husband if you have one!

  • we

    And the same for you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Sarah in Outstate MN

    II see lots of people on here supporting Dayton or the Republicans to continue the shutdown. You are tools.

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