MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A commission convened by former Vice President Walter Mondale and former Gov. Arne Carlson says Minnesota should raise cigarette, alcohol and income taxes to end a week-old government shutdown.

The report released Thursday says a $5 billion deficit could be erased by cutting $3.6 billion in projected spending and raising $1.4 billion in taxes.

Tax recommendations include a temporary, across-the-board income tax increase of 4 percent, a cigarette tax hike of $1.29 per pack, higher alcohol taxes and a human services surcharge.

The panel was picked by Mondale, a Democrat, and Carlson, a Republican, to help break the stalemate between Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton and Republican lawmakers.

Republicans are opposed to higher taxes. Dayton has pushed a plan he says would spare all but the highest earners from tax increases.

It’s not clear that the commission’s recommendations will matter. GOP leaders were cool to the panel when Mondale and Carlson formed it earlier this week. Dayton issued a statement saying he disagreed with an across-the board tax increase, preferring instead an increase on only the state’s highest earners.

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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (77)
  1. Uriah says:

    It took this group to come up with this. Tax everybody. What a bunch of BS. Why didn’t they look at cutting? Its hard, it takes time, they just spend spend spend. When Reagon faced this in California as governor he appointed business people to help him cut the budget with no new taxes, they did and flurished. This state brings in a bunch of has-beens and guess what, they come up with raise taxes.

    1. drts says:

      Has beens? Well, I guess. Mondale lost his last election in 2002 to Norm Coleman for U.S. Senate. Arne has been more active recently. However, he lost his last election as well: for the condominimum board at Emerald Pointe in Punta Gorda, Florida last year. Absolutely true. You can look it up. He was trounced as a matter of fact.

    2. Eric Weber says:

      You should really compare MN to other states. Take South Dakota for instance. No state income taxes. Go see what a shithole it is. Go see how crappy they treat their handicapped people. Go see that they have no major metro areas. In fact, go there and stay there. People like me that have already experienced low tax regions already KNOWS BETTER. But you have obviously never lived anywhere else.

      1. Eric has a plan says:

        So you’re saying that if we stop spending money catering to people that are a drain on the system they will leave and as a result liberals like you won’t like it here anymore and you will leave too?

      2. Uriah says:

        I guess I just doesn’t Knows better.

      3. this guys dumb says:

        WHAT? Are you out of your freakin mind?

        South Dakota is a NICE clean state man … you are clearly f’in stupid!
        Please provide some facts you idiot.

        No major metro areas, yeah because places like Sioux Falls or Rapid City haven’t been BOOMING for the past few years… wow just shows how much of an idiot you are!

        No major metro areas??? WHAT???????

        Please go back under the rock you came out from……. you are a fool!

      4. Drd says:

        Your right Eric I lived in Texas same goes there. You get what you pay for and Texas treats it’s women and children as second class citizens. They have no state services.

      5. Kris says:

        Amen to that, Eric. You get what you pay for.
        I especially agree with your statement about going there and staying there. If these businesses and people who are so tax averse really feel that way, nobody is stopping them from leaving. All they care about is themselves. Go buy a few acres, build a castle and put a moat around it. But be sure to give up all your SS, Medicaire and any other government services when you are there!

        1. sld324 says:

          Yeah, I’ll give it up, so long as you don’t get any from me. Where will that leave you?

      6. Jake says:

        Eric is a helpless, mindless, stoned piece of protoplasm. I was in SD last summer, had a great time. Didn’t see anybody being abused. It was clean, crime free, the illegal aliens got arrested, the locals were polite. Drove around a lot in Rapid City, NO Section 8 housing, beautiful scenery, nice ROADS, quiet, peaceful, what more could a person ask for??

        1. Jake is a fool says:

          Jake, you went to deadwood where you got stone drunk which doesn’t count. South Dakota is a God forsaken place that only attracts tourists and nothing better. Why don’t you freakin move back to Deadwook and drink yourself silly.

          1. Rico Suave says:

            Tourists and all the businesses we chased out with high taxes.

          2. You are a fool says:

            No you are a fool. You have no idea what is nice. Go continue to live in your s hithole in North Minneapolis. Just because you can’t afford to live in a nice environment, and all you can afford is wifebeater shirts, while drinking your trashy cheap beer.

            You have no clue you moron.
            South Dakota is WAY better than Minnesota.
            At least you can walk around at 2am without having to worry about being shot/mugged…

            stupid worthless piece of trash!

    3. Mike says:

      Reagan raised taxes 11 times according to former Republican Sen. Alan Simpson.

      1. k says:

        The post was while he was governor not president. He did raise taxes once while governor but refunded the tax after he balanced the budget and had a surplus.

      2. Rico Suave says:

        Don’t be a dolt. Reagan may have gone along with some democrat tax increases to deal for some legislation he wanted passed, or they may have gotten thrown in as part of a compromise, but he never said “Raise taxes? Great idea!” like governor goofy. Marginal tax rates from Carter to Reagan went waaaay down, some brackets by almost half. The dems are always pushing tax hikes. Reagan dealt them a few to shut them up and get other things he wanted more. And also as you (should) know, taxes and spending bills come from the house. So let’s just say the dems raised taxes because it’s what they do, and Reagan signed the bill. To say that he raised taxes is like saying Obama lowered them. He did no such thing. He just extended the Bush tax cuts. Thou fool.

  2. d kauls says:

    How about that? This ad hoc commission (a “blue-ribbon panel” no less!) looked at it for a few hours and got everything decided. They did the impossible, figuring where the billions would be raised from and where they would be cut out of the budget. Next, perhaps they can tackle the issue of where the mates to socks go when they are put in the dryer. That should take a little longer.

  3. Losers says:

    Why don’t the house from both parties pay for this mess, they’re the one’s who couldn’t come to an agreement. Why should we have to pay.

    1. Eric Weber says:

      Because the poor, handicapped, and infrastructure depends on it brainiac

      1. Losers says:

        Is that pretty obvious – Robin Hood

    2. Missy says:

      Couldn’t agree with you more!!!

  4. Color me surprised says:

    Typical liberals with their typical solution, just tax everything and all will be well

    Didn’t see this solution coming out of these washed up losers, nope not at all

    1. TRUE AMERICAN says:

      color me stupid there are plawenty of things they could tax maybe we sould taxes all rebublicans or the air you breath, your a typical commie rebublican …………….you have NO COMMONSENCE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      1. Rico Suave says:

        I guess the welfare office must close at five. True American is back for another feeble attempt at discourse. Does Michelle Obama have a literacy program we could direct him to?


    Who are these two gas bags to form a “commission” to make a recommendation? Me and some of my friends have studied it too and recommend they cut 6 Billion in spending. That would erase the deficite and that would even leave money left over to lower the tax on beer.

    1. Eric Weber says:

      Yeah at what expense? Put the handicapped on the streets, close all state parks and facilities, and shut down your precious law enforcement that arrests all the scary black and brown people you are afraid of? LOL
      Yeah I know you better than you think don’t I.

      1. Sidney says:

        You really belong on that panel Eric, you would fit right in.

        1. just sayin says:

          The panel of coo coo’s!!!!!!!
          Eric really tops all the dumbest liberal commentators on here!

          1. mj says:

            I also vote for Eric.

            1. Scott says:

              I agree with Eric!

      2. Jake says:

        What’s up with this ‘handicapped’ kick that you are stuck on Eric? Didn’t SD treat you well enough? Maybe you couldn’t find someone to wipe your butt or what?

  6. BSwanson says:

    You need to read the entire proposal including teh $3.6 spending cut.

    1. Shut it down! says:

      stopped reading at tax-increase, don’t need to go any further

      1. Common sense says:

        I love this response!!!!! Stop reading when you don’t like it! Truly Classic!!!

  7. Eric Weber says:

    No don’t raise taxes that are already too high on alcohol and tobacco. They should legalize cannabis and tax it. We would make that 5 billion in six months.

    1. just saying says:

      And then people like you can go out driving while high and kill people on the road… sure.

      1. Weed Can Save Us says:

        idiot post… sure will some folk drive high.. yeah.. will every one.. no.. kind of like another substance that impairs called alcohol .. oh yeah booze is legal.. idiot

        1. just sayin says:

          But they have a way to test for it you dumb ass. Think about what you post before looking like an idiot.

    2. cindy says:

      dont forget to bring walt and arnie one of your doobers for the next meeting.

      1. Jake says:

        Don’t bogart that JOINT.

  8. sw says:

    Sounds like a good compromise; something we have forgotten how to do in this country. All economists have said a balanced approach is what is needed. Unfortunately, everyone operates by the “My way or the highway’ approach.

    1. Rico Suave says:

      All economists? What, were they all in the same room at once when you asked them? “Some” economists say that the quickest and surest way to chase growth and business to lower taxed states is to raise taxes. “Some” other economists say that if you want to attract deadbeats to your state the best way is to offer lots of entitlement programs. “Some” economists think that the best way to stop the out of control spending is to draw a line in the sand and simply say no more. We’re not funding your spending spree. Do you really think that all economists think the same way about these issues?

  9. Missy says:

    I think there has to be a combination of raising taxes and cuting on spending. There is no way I can be convinced that there aren’t areas that can cut spending that doesn’t inclued our education system or the services to our mentall/physically challenged folks in this state. Maybe a cost reduction reward system could be put in place for folks with ideas (valid ones, that is) of how to cut spending.

    1. dan says:

      When you consider that 70% of our budget goes toward Education and Human services, that is where we need to trim the fat. Not sure if you have worked in a school district lately, but its amazing the waste and the amount of dollars spent not directly related to improving our childs education.

    2. Jake says:

      Plenty of places to cut spending — ethanol subsidies, the ‘arts’, tell the DNR to stop buying land that it can’t even take care of and off tax rolls, welfare REFORM, stop welfare to illegal aliens, end many tax breaks for all, trim the state’s workforce, the list is endless. Raising sin taxes and gas taxes only hurts the poor and middle class, something that dayton said he wouldn’t do. He will only drive business out of the state.

    3. fefef says:

      There you go. We’ll save money by not paying for elected government. We’ll all just vote from home on what we want to spend money on.

  10. Rico Suave says:

    The caped cadavers to the rescue!! Tax, spend, and away!! Couple of real problem solvers, these two. Mondull is about as exciting as a bowl of creamed wheat, and Carlson is just a washed up old liberal. I thought Mondale was dead. Not just politically but in fact. When did they exhume him?

  11. Chubby says:

    The Republicans don’t want to do there job so/,
    someone has to do it for them. Dayton is at least
    trying to do what is right.

    1. Diane says:

      Hey Chubby,

      Dayton is doing whats right? The GOP gave Gov Goofy a balanced budget weeks ago. He is the one who has demanded changes and is unwilling to cut spending.
      Keep it shut down until we have a long term solution

      1. TRUE AMERICAN says:

        to all the moron rebublicans you can only cut so much before you have to find more income to pay for eccentials and since ALLyour rich friends that own the buisnesses have hired so many new employees can’t afford to pay a little extra answer me two questions 1. why is the unemployment rate still over 8% and how do you expect the state to pay for these eccential programs like the state patrol, MNDOT,the department of Public safety, oh by the way Diane the budget was all smoke and mirrors it didn’t balance at all it pushed payments to the next generation!………………..rico I thought you were deported since you haven’t graced us with you moronic statements

        1. Rico Suave says:

          I see the nurse stepped away form her station and left her computer logged on. I see she doesn’t have spell-check either. You should not be allowed to comment. Your interest is purely selfish since you work for the state. You don’t care what happens to the state as long as those government checks keep rolling in.

        2. Common sense says:

          Although, I wouldn’t say morons. It is becoming frustrating to hear the same non-truths being thrown out in these forums from people who obviously don’t want a tax increase. Dayton was willing to make cuts to reach the budget, but also wanted a tax increase as well to cover the 1/3 of the increase in spending.

          Agree or disagree with it, it’s all good, but stop the out right mis-statements and lying!!!

    2. StraycatStrut says:

      @Chubby….. Col Klink has yet to move out of the Tax Payer Mansion on Summit. If he were doing what is right…… and not left…. or wrong…. he would sign the bill and get everyone moving forward like a leader should.

  12. Rico Suave says:

    Really? After Mondull’s shared economic record with the peanut farmer, I can’t believe anyone would ask him his opinion about anything regarding budgets or the economy……. In other news President Obama has asked Joe Hazelwood, former captain of the Exxon Valdeez to be the new hazardous waste shipping safety czar.

    You can’t make this stuff up. It writes itself.

  13. You all are so funny and you just can't help yourselves huh? says:

    This is funny, the same story is print almost every day and then the same people with the same posts argue and call each other stupid and other names. Do you all ever get tired of having the same fight over and over and yelling at each other that you are wrong I am right every single day? I guess not because you can copy paste these posts from any of the stories from the last 3 weeks. Please keep it up though as you are all just showing how foolish you are by resorting to name calling and pulling hair like you are a 3rd grader at recess. MN nice…LOL that should be revised when talking to people that are not all there and want to talk about politics. I hope they keep the Gov shut down as this is 1 of the best forms of comedy I have found in a long time. It is like an Abbot and Costello skit, you’re stupid, you’re an idiot, you know nothing, you should not be able to vote. I think you should all be taking your own advice, if you cannot have a civilized conversation you should not be able to comment on anything that someone else has an opinion on. Looking forward to the next barn burner of intelligence and knuckle busting, keep up the good work all.

    1. Rico Suave says:

      Kinda verbose way to say shut up. OK mom, we’ll be good. We’ll get to that higher plane you’re on some day. Honest.

  14. You all are so funny and you just can't help yourselves huh? says:

    Not at all, as stated it is entertaining to read all the people that claim that they know exactly what is going to happen, as well as all of you that know exactly how to fix the problem but never have had the guts to try to actually do so. Since you lack this you take it out on the fellow bloggers. Takes a big person to yell and fight on a blog where they will never be face to face with the person they are yelling at. Go ahead and think what you will though, you calling me names and judging my post is the same form of entertainment I was asking for. Just like the mom comment, hard to be that being a man but you jumped to that right away and the assumptions are the best part about bloggers. You know nothing but assume everything.

    1. Rico Suave says:

      No, I don’t lack the guts to tell my hapless liberals acquaintances that they have fewer brain cells than the average amoeba. I do it all the time. And TRUE AMERICAN is just too easy a target. And I guess I did assume you were either a mom, or a hall monitor, or an out of work crossing guard. My bad.

  15. Minn Lite says:

    Taste Great! Less Filling! Taste…

    1. You all are so funny and you just can't help yourselves huh? says:

      Minn Lite
      Love the post!!!!!!
      “a hall monitor, or an out of work crossing guard” come on, you can do better than that.

  16. Common sense says:

    I love the Miller Lite commercial at the end!!!! That’s wonderfull! By the way, it’s less filling! LOL!!

  17. PJO says:

    Unfortunately I don’t see a resolution from the children at the Capitol any time soon because NONE of them are willing to compromise. Each side wants everything their way and don’t really care how many of us are going to get hurt in the process. I was saddened to hear how many of the children are still taking their paychecks while many of our state workers will go without theirs. Sad so very sad and selfish of them. None of them should keep their jobs in the coming elections.

  18. grizzley man says:

    I think they should shut their pie holes. If the state raises their income tax four percent as these have-beens suggest, I am moving out.

    1. Joe says:

      Good bye and good riddance grizzley man. This state just saw a rise in IQ with you moving out of state.

  19. Joe says:

    Public employees are not the enemy. They do not deserve you wrath. The real enemy are the legislators who had 5 months to get a budget approved, but they sat on their duffs playing games with the public while the public listen to white trash talk radio which put illogical arguments in their heads. Everyone who writes anti gov. slander on this site are idiots.

    1. Weed Can Save Us says:

      we all knew about this for the last 2 years when the story first broke

  20. No Solution More of the same BS says:

    Real Problems and no solution is what the has been panel came up with. Stay in retirement along with liar double talking fee raising Pawlenty. Even Jesse sometimes keeps his mouth shut.

  21. Weed Can Save Us says:

    ganja can save us.. I said it once.. i will say it again and again… let us grow and sell ganja in peace even if that means taxing it

    1. just saying says:

      And that is why the education system here is very poor… great example people.
      Lesson learned.

      🙂 Nobody ever says, I wanna be a druggy when I grow up…. apparently someone has! Losers

  22. nate says:

    I’m getting tired of all the rediculous name calling and petty bickering over things like spell check and grammar. As far as the shutdown goes…since I know very little about what cuts they want to make or spending to be approved, I just want the gov’t to do it’s job, pull their heads out, and get it together. I work for the state and although I’m still working and being paid in full, until the gov’t is up and running again, I can’t close the deal on purchasing my family’s first home since I’m flagged for a loan for working for the state. Jerks.

  23. Citizen says:

    This morning the news announced that Minnesota’s bond rating was downgraded from triple A to AA+, and the reason stated that it was not just the shutdown, it was because of the LAST SEVERAL YEARS of Minnesota not balancing the budget–in other words, the revenue shifts and smoke and mirrors approach under T-Paw. Who is to blame? I don’t really care. Here is my solution that I think might work. Tax pop, chips, candy, junk foods. This stuff really isn’t food and anyone who wants to pay less tax can easily cut down on purchasing these “foods.” Second, since it has recently been pointed out that the biggest culprits in the obesity problem are #1 chips, and #2 pop, that should help with health care costs. Third, this tax will provide a much broader base than taxing cigarettes. Now I’m waiting for the pop companies and chip and candy companies to have a snit fit about how people will buy less of their product. No, I sincerely doubt they will, but go ahead. It is a solution that is the most painless I can think of, and I would sure appreciate it if some of you econ 101 wizards would do some number crunching to see the revenue stream.

  24. gabby says:

    Citizen has a great idea above. Honestly, after Ventura’s tax overhauls and Pawlenty’s revenue shifts it’s no surprise that the state is in trouble. It’s too damaging to only cut our way out of this. have some compassion and realism about this. And stop the name calling. It doesn’t help anything.

    1. mj says:

      Who made you boss?

  25. BeenThereDoneThat says:

    Can’t put all the blame on Pawlenty..remember he had a Democrat spending congress to deal with. Glad he had that veto pen…or we would be in bigger trouble

  26. kevin says:

    Eric and True American if we send a bus load of welfare rats back to Gary Indiana please be on the first bus load. Then everyday for the the next year we’ll send you another load for free. Budget problem solved.

  27. MC HAMMER says:

    Here we go agian! The Libs in this state want to raise taxes on everything and everybody because they cant so no to,Section 8 housing,Welfare for people who been on it for years!People who dont want to work and sit home to get high and drunk! I think we should recall Gov Dayton and put Emmer In!