MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/AP) — Instead of sending Minnesota’s elected leaders into a frenzy of activity, the nation’s only state government shutdown has deepened the political paralysis that led them to their budget standoff. Top Democrats and Republicans have given no sign when they will talk again about how to resolve the stalemate.

The only activity at the capitol Saturday didn’t include politicians. Protesters with the Minnesota Environmental Partnership pitched tents and called for compromise indoors and outdoors.

“If you don’t have a fishing license right now, you are out of luck. If you want to camp in a state park right now, you are out of luck,” said Molly Pederson, a protester who held a sign saying: Minnesota’s outdoors aren’t a DFL or GOP issue.

As the ninth day of the shutdown came to a close, only one tent remained outside the Capitol after the protest ended. That tent belonged to Jason Moran, who has camped outside of the Capitol since the beginning of the shutdown. He’s a furloughed state pollution control emergency responder and is now worried Minnesota is headed towards disaster.

“They’re gone, it doesn’t feel like they care, doesn’t feel like there is any end in sight to this,” he said. “I’ve just been coming out every day since the layoff started, because I want there to be a presence.”

Moran passes the time by turning to history, something he says lawmakers should do.

“I am reading a book on President James Monroe. It’s kind of fitting, because he ushered in the Era of Good Feelings, where all the parties got along and all respected each other,” he said.

University of Minnesota political science professor Larry Jacobs said the on-going shutdown is doing great damage to the state. He says Minnesota’s image as a miracle state has been tarnished.

“There are some estimates Minnesotans may be losing upwards of $18 million a week to the shutdown, and that doesn’t include a host of other costs, including the higher costs to borrow money,” Jacobs said.

The last time lawmakers sat down to talk was Wednesday.

After blowing May and June deadlines to agree on a budget, Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton and Republican legislative leaders have met only twice — once for less than 30 minutes — and have made no apparent progress since most of state government closed July 1. There’s little sense of urgency, even with 22,000 state employees idled, 100 road projects stopped, 66 state parks barricaded, an assortment of services discontinued and the state’s top credit rating tarnished.

The lack of action contrasts with what’s been happening in Washington, where an Aug. 2 deadline to raise the debt ceiling has lawmakers scrambling for a deal that would keep the U.S. from a potential default on its debt. President Barack Obama has summoned leaders for a rare weekend session and aides are trading proposals behind the scenes.

While the consequences of the state’s inaction hardly reach that scale, that’s little consolation for public workers who won’t be getting paychecks or people with disabilities who have lost social services.

“My thoughts would just be to encourage them to continue to meet and talk and try to work on a compromise that will benefit the entire state of Minnesota,” said Mary Nienow, who directs a child care advocacy organization, Child Care Works. She said her group is getting dozens of emails a day from families worried that they will lose their child care assistance.

The key players had one brief session at midweek that ended with the two sides accusing each other of taking a step backward. Speaking to reporters after each session, they have said nothing that suggests progress.

“Sometimes no news is good news, but in this case I’m not sure,” said former Minnesota House Minority Leader Marty Seifert, who represented Republicans in budget talks from 2007 until 2009. “In this case, no news is no news because it means there probably is nothing to report and it means nothing is going on.”

He added: “Really, I’m not sure that it’s any different than where they were on Jan. 8. It must be an incredible sense of frustration on both sides, and the general public is rather frustrated, too.”

The courts have taken some of the worst sting out of the shutdown. Decisions by a judge and a special master have restored services like special education payments to schools, state aid for training for the blind, and emergency crisis aid for the poor. More such rulings are likely on the way.

But some groups’ requests have been rejected, so the shutdown means continuing pain for them. Arc Minnesota, a St. Paul nonprofit that helps people with disabilities, has suspended 90 percent of a housing service since losing its state funding. The program helped more than 200 people, including some who were homeless and others who were institutionalized, find their own housing in the past 18 months.

“We really worry about what those people will do,” CEO Pat Mellenthin said.

The shutdown’s effects are wide-ranging. It has closed historical sites and rest stops, shut down the state lottery, made it tougher to get a driver’s license and halted the issuance of hunting and fishing licenses.

Much of the political dispute comes down to differences over how much to spend on health programs and social services and how to pay for it.

Republicans want to eliminate a $5 billion deficit by cutting projected spending and holding the two-year state budget to $34 billion, the amount projected to come in without new revenue.

But the state’s budget is being squeezed as enrollment and costs for public schools and health care programs grow and as the state, like others, copes with the loss of federal stimulus dollars. Dayton wants to soften cuts by raising another $1.4 billion; his latest offer relies on either a temporary income tax increase on top earners or higher cigarette taxes. House Speaker Kurt Zellers and Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch have rejected both options.

Both sides are dug in. Each says it’s up to the other to move.

In 2005, a more limited partial government shutdown ended after eight days when lawmakers and then-Gov. Tim Pawlenty, now a presidential candidate, agreed on a 75-cents-a-pack cigarette charge they called a “health impact fee.” During that shutdown, leaders of a divided Legislature met frequently and traded substantive offers. Back then, the leaders and Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s chief of staff spent part of a Fourth of July weekend in talks; this year, the weekend was a long cooling-off period.

It appears that a solution this year will require some form of new revenue, just as 2005 did.

Dayton has more room to operate than Koch and Zellers, who have to line up votes from a caucus that includes a new, powerful faction of lawmakers dead-set against spending increases and others who hope for a quick way out of the shutdown.

“If they make a deal and they don’t have the votes to pass it, that’s a difficult position to be in, obviously,” said Rep. Kurt Daudt, a first-term Republican from Crown who opposes tax increases and gambling.

Sunday marks the longest state shutdown in Minnesota’s history and hits a national record. A minimum ten day shutdown would mark the longest state shutdown in the nation in at least a decade.

No new talks are scheduled. Dayton will be out-of-state Sunday as he sends off troops at a deployment ceremony in Fort McCoy, Wis.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments (122)
  1. jim osekowsky says:

    Are there”shutdowns” in China?

    1. Mike says:

      dayton and the dems think they can win by doing a shutdown. Well, bring it on, dayton. Will just see about that in 2012.

      1. Deb says:

        foolish person YOU are!! Dayton has made concessions, what have the republicans done??? Recall republicans NOW!!

        1. Alfred says:

          Read a newspaper dear, you are embarrassing your self.

          1. Mike says:

            By all accounts Republicans are unwilling to compromise. What part of that has not been told in the media?

        2. Jim Peterson says:

          The Republicans passed a budget with a 6 percent INCREASE in state spending. That’s what the Republicans have done. It’s DAYTON that refused to sign off on that sizable increase in spending, and Dayton is the ONLY one to blame here.

          Have you not been paying attention, or are you so gullable that you just go along with what the rest of the Liberals say and not think for yourself?

        3. King says:

          The arrogant republicans want to destroy the government,we do need to
          increase the income tax on the rich, and repubilcans need to get off there
          high horses for the people of are state.

      2. something to say says:

        All the Dems want is a 2% tax on the rich. How hard is that. Are your daughter, son, niece or nephews important at all. When will the cutting of education end, when we are back to the old days of one room school houses? And for your information, when Dayton proposed this tax on the rich, he also was taxing himself, doesn’t that tell you something? He’s not just going after someone else, he is including himself. The Republicans are still taking their wages and Dayton is NOT! Yet the state employees are not being paid. Tells me a lot about the Republicans!! The Republicans only care about themselves and not for the people that they are supposeably working for.

        1. Guy says:

          BETTER to be back in the era of “one room school houses”. Kids actually LEARNED something then. Now its all about “esteem” and “feel-good-but don’t-hurt-anyone’s-feelings” … yuk/ugh. Kids that can’t find CANADA on a map when they graduate – but they sure can fill out that welfare app. you betcha.

          1. Dale says:

            No child left behind leads teaching to do well on the mandated tests. Judging from your numerous posts, you clearly have failed in the area of critical thinking

        2. Stacy says:

          Dayton is not going to be taxed. Most of his money is in South Dakota in his trust fund. Get your facts right!

          1. Larry says:

            exactly!! Dayton makes sure his millions aren’t effected. Dayton is a ‘poor’ little rich boy, silver spooned kid who’s never had a hard working job in his life. He doesn’t know what it means to work hard for what you earned, hes had it all given to him…..along with his rich spoiled sons. Daytons out of touch, out of reality. Mn liberal voters were blind the day they voted him in.

        3. telm says:

          “. . .When will the cutting of education end . . . ”

          We have NEVER cut education. Education gets more and more money, every year. It’s a bloated fish. We spend Way Too Much on education that doesn’t work.

          1. frozenrunner says:

            Education suffers as there is more mandates for testing. Nickels compared to 15 billion but 30 million for 61 tests. Driving up the cost of education is the almost 3 billion for special education, which is labor intensive. When you say it is bloated could you at least offer proof. The it is because I say it is is rather grandiose.

      3. Mike says:


        Gov Daytons term runs until 2014. Sorry to deflate your stupidity.

        1. Mike says:

          Dems out out in 2012. just watch.

      4. bb says:

        You think, the repubs are the ones unwilling to compromise, ya we will see you in 2012 repubs. Dayton stick to your guns and send a message that the top 2 percent must share the pain and pay their fair share.

        1. Bill says:

          LOL How does it feel to be Obamas Guinea Pig you Liberal minnesotans

          1. something to say says:

            Just an interesting fact…
            There are 134 in the House of Representatives for Minnesota.
            According to the clerk of the House of Representatives, both state representatives and senators make $174,000 per year, as of 2010. The speaker gets $223,500, while the majority and minority leaders earn $193,400. The salaries change every year according to the cost of living, if not by legislative action. (Wish my paycheck could change for the cost of living as theirs do.)
            Add that up it cost us…
            $23,316,000.00 For people that cannot put a budget together in a year, but wait until the last minute and then shut down everything that is making money and still get a paycheck. Wish I could do that with my job! At least Dayton refused a paycheck.
            I’m not saying that Dayton does not have faults, he does, but raising taxes to match everyone elses taxes, doesn’t sound bad to me. Is there more to that story? I’m surfing the internet and all I see are Rep and Dems cutting eachother down…can they just get to the real issue or is this going to be another cheap movie you go to see and it just wasn’t worth it??!

    2. G says:

      Yes, every year for 2 weeks

    3. It's Not Rocket Science says:

      No. If anyone complains about anything they just throw them in prison for a decade.

    4. c says:

      Perhaps recall is the only way. Nonfeasance is listed as a reason for recall. It does seem there is an intentional failure to perform a required duty or obligation in this case. I called and e:mailed both my representatives on June 26 urging compromise and negotiation so we wouldn’t get to this point. I did hear from from one of my representatives but I heard absolutely nothing from the other (Matt Dean). It says that a petition for recall needs 25% of the votes cast in the last election……

      1. Citizen says:

        @c. I wonder if this would be a good argument for recall (from section 3 of the 14th amendment to the U.S. Constitution). After all, the GOP signed pledges of no new taxes to Sutton and Norquist–unelected third parties who are not accountable to voters. I firmly believe a pledge like this violates the oath of office these legislators took to Minnesota and the U.S.
        Section 3.
        No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice-President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof.

  2. See BS says:

    MPR is reporting they can’t agree on the budget for the Department of Health and Human Services.

    I believe the Health and Human Services has been used as a “Black Box” and a Ponzi scam.

    MPR is practically in the same building, so they want the public to believe it’s complex.

  3. Jimq says:

    You must be the person live off someone else tax. When we’re in debt, don’t you think it make more sense to cut spending vs raise tax? When is it going to end???? Because of some people like you and STUPID governor, he decided to shutdown the government instead of solve tge deficit.

  4. oh my says:

    no blame game here but on good word from higher up Has been they plan to not make any moves for at least up to 4 more weeks before compromising wih dayton. Just the word. And I am beginning to believe that!! True shame that this state has come to that and the people whom say they care about us!!

  5. joe says:

    My comments here. This is a test.

  6. al says:

    funny, but Governor Dayton is running around Wisconsin.

  7. joe says:

    So my comment wasn’t accepted before by the conservative media. Yeah, we all know what’s up with that.

    1. MIke says:


      They have filters that prevent certain words from being printed. Point two, calling WCCO conservative media is a leap and that is coming from a professed liberal!

  8. Tax the other Guy says:

    When a republican negotiates in good faith and goes along with a revenue increase, he gets blasted and blasted for fees going up and property tax increases. If state income taxes would have been increased, he still would get blasted and blasted by the same group of people.

    Maybe we need a checkbox on the tax form that asks…”Are you in favor of a tax increase?” If you check the box, your taxes are increased so you can be happy.

    When it comes to politics, “Minnesota Nice” is a myth because everyone seems to want the “other guy” to be inflicted with higher taxes.

    1. frozenrunner says:

      When Pawlenty says over and over no new taxes but taxes are increase elsewhere so he looks good he deserved to get blasted. Rather than tackle the issues he pushed them off onto other people. Saying that you cut spending when what you are doing is cutting funding to education and local government is a little disingenuous. To top it off by being smug and saying the State cut spending, everybody else can too makes it look all the worse. You have no basis to claim who would have blasted him had Pawlenty raised income taxes. In the end his inability to solve problems cost him a chance for higher office.

    2. Darren says:

      Why can’t we vote on what we want our taxes used for? See whats really important to Minnesotan’s since the government doesn’t seem to know or care what we say.

  9. Ruth says:

    Fire all the state politicians and replace them with people who will get the job done. MN is a laughing stock to the rest of the nation and we have only to look to St. Paul to see exactly where the blame lies. The should be ashamed to show their worthless faces in public, and they should start looking for other employment because when this shutdown ends, so will their livelihoods.

    1. Mike says:

      After you convince voters that you should be Queen, than you can set policy.
      Until then, you need to become part of a solution instead of throwing rocks that only make your arm stronger, and do nothing for your brain or the issues.

  10. Christian Wait says:

    Republicans compromised by passing the largest budget is state history.

    How has Dayton compromised?

  11. Just a thought says:

    Here is a thought… A flat tax to everyone.. then you pay your fair share.. no loop holes, no shelters.. just a set rate from your gross income.. then no one can say they pay more than there fair share. As far as who it to blame>> they all are political parties suck.

    1. legal immigrant says:

      Totally agree!

  12. dotherightthing says:

    The Governor has provided many different senerios to the Republican party it is obvious to anyone with a brain that the republican party will not negotiate with the governor. Its either the republicans way or no way at all that is obvious, to back this up to political statesmen offer to help negotiate Arne Carlson who was governor and who one time ran minnesotas finance, and Walter Mondale once vice president of the united states. What does the GOP majority leadership do..they insult them which shows thier lack of wanting to negotiate at all. There should be an uproar by minesotans to recall the Republican majority leaders because they are not serving the majority of minesotans, they choose to serve the rich who helped pay to get them in offivce, got news for you majority leadership, you’ll lose in 2012 because of what your pulling now say good bye to your jobs……

    1. waste says:

      The rich are already taxed.
      The middle class is taxed.
      Both are concerned and want to know where there taxes are being spent.
      Now we need to tax the other half that do not have any tax obligation.
      Maybe then we will all start to question why we need to have the largest budget ever.
      Where is all this money being spent?

      1. Mike says:


        They buy stadiums for wealthy owners of sports teams.
        They help maintain roads and services.
        They pay educators, police and fire protection.
        They pay for the medical of needs for those that need our help.
        They pay for the welfare of dead beat dad’s who walk away from responsibility.
        They pay for our governing body.
        They pay for our libraries and services.
        On and on………..

      2. Citizen says:

        @Waste. Did you turn on your tap water today–for a shower, a drink, to water some plants on your deck? Water provided to you by your city government, inspection provided to you by the state to be sure the water is potable. Did you drive on a street today? Courtesy of your muncipality, the county, and the state. Was a crime prevented in your neighborhood, was a speeder stopped, was the driver of a broken down car helped on the freeway? Think before you ask a question about where your money is spent. Stop and think about the things that make your life easier every day and you will know where your money is spent. Or, since CONservatives like delusions and science fiction might make good reading for you, read “One Second After” which will tell you in vivid detail what happens when there is NO GOVERNMENT. Happy summer reading!

    2. middle of the road says:

      Sorry to burst your bubble, but they are serving the majority. They each were elected by the majority of Minnesotans that voted in their districts. I do not support this shut down as it is non productive, but we do have to get spending under control. Can you year after year spend more than you are projected to make?

      1. Citizen says:

        @middle of the road. The state doesn’t get much choice about increasing spending when it needs to provide repair to roads and road building and the price of oil goes up by 40%. Or provide health care for the neediest of us and the price of health care goes up by 15%. So, in order to balance the budget I guess we can quit repairing/building roads and throw the elderly out of nursing homes because by the time a lot of elderly (I think about 60%) get to a nursing home–their finances have been exhausted; they have no choice but Medicaid. I was the conservator for a ward, so I know first hand what happens there. $3,000 to $6,000 a month for PRIVATE nursing home care? What a joke. Those PRIVATE NURSING HOMES are ripping off the taxpayers as fast as they can. PRIVATE, remember that great GOD of the GOP–PRIVATE INDUSTRY? Ripping off the taxpayers. No surprise there. The problem is NOT, REPEAT NOT, public employees or even public works.

      2. taxed enough says:

        Thank you middle of the road, I have been saying that over and over again but it keeps falling on deaf ears. Maybe if enough people say what the elections showed last November it will finally set in.

  13. Deb says:

    I’m totally frustrated as a Minnesotan and an American. What is happening to our state and our country? What has happened to the art of compromise? That is what a society must do to thrive. Our lives are not about being a republican or a democrat. Our future should not be held hostage to a two party system where the only concern is who is right and who is wrong. Representing the citizenry is not a career; it is a public service. You should not get paid a full time salary for a part time job that you chose to perform as a service to the people. Yet, most of the house and senate and their staff continue to be paid to do…what? I agree with Ruth, our only hope is to remove them all at the next election. We must send a message that this will not be tolerated or the bipartisanship will never end. Are you listening St. Paul?

    1. Citizen says:

      @Mike. Is it time for demonstrations with pitchforks and torches yet? I can tell you I am more than ready! The lies coming from the GOP are absolutely absurd with no basis in reality. Since when are the neediest people in our society the enemy? The rich are waging class warfare on the middle class, and they are winning. When will we get organized and deal with this, and it will probably be in the streets. This old granny (me) is ready for hand-to-hand combat to save Minnesota and America for my grandchildren. Anyone else out there ready to put their money where their mouth is? My generation fought in Vietnam only to be branded with the U.S. loss over there, but we did win the civil rights battle and the battle for women’s rights–some of us died in the streets. Well, I guess we will have to go there again, although my 20-something son says Americans no longer have the guts to fight for themselves.

      1. ujm says:

        Take from the rich. Give to the supposed poor. Pure Socialism..

  14. dotherightthing says:

    Jim q your lack of understanding of how deep the cuts are going to be is not unusual, The republican plan cuts so deep the old and vulnerable will suffer dearly. 30,000 public and private sector jobs will be lost which means 30,000 less tax payers and 30,000 more people not being productive and taking from the system from unemployement all so some rich people shouldn’t have to pay as much percentage as taxes as the poor and middle class? The governor has made many comprimises Jim its koch and Zellers who refuse to yield, they should lose thier jobs because they are not representing the state as they promised to…RECALL KOCHS AND ZELLERS!

  15. Alfred says:

    It’s Dayton’s fault.

    The Republicans passed a balanced budget that increased spending two billion dollars.

    They should not compromise with a drug-addled refugee from the nut house.

    1. frozenrunner says:

      Do you really think that there is going to be a 6% economic growth each of the next two years? Do you really think the federal government is going to pass a medicare waiver? You should try and read something about what the GOP passed so you might understand what they passed was unworkable.

      1. Guy says:

        THAT means that we need to cut MORE – not less. Another words you are saying they gave away TOO MUCH. I agree.

        1. Reality check people says:

          sucks when a republican pulls the same stuff democrats do. Heres a thought: quite the class warfare, work together, and if everyone would take responsibility for themselves and not depend on the government we wouldn’t be in this perdicament. I know, I am working 2 jobs to barely make ends meet, and its all because of taxes. If we didn’t have to pay for all the extra BS all the politicians want to spend money on it wouldn’t be this way. We need a new tax system, flat tax, fair tax anything than what we have now and a hudge change in culture. Enough raising wellfare addicts and giving a free ride to all the immegrants.

          1. Sean says:

            How many people got the exception past the 5 year total foe MFIP benefits? If you can not provide that statistic than the system as put forth by Arne Carlson is working. Without statistics you are just ranting.
            For a flat tax system to work there would have to be no other taxes like sales, excise, etc. Get rid of deductions,and tax anything that makes a profit as income is a great idea. You really want to drive business out of this state.

        2. Mike says:

          Why are Liberals so rude when they are trying to make their point? To me Liberal = mean and Nasty, Conservative=respectful and logical. I notice haow you are namecalling. That only makes people not want to listen to you. Maybe if you tried talking about your positions respectfully, people would take you guys more seriously.

  16. Alfred says:

    The good news is that after six months or so of being laid off, the non-essential workers will wander away and find real jobs in the private sector.

    It will save us the trouble of firing them.

    We will save a bundle.

  17. Chuck says:

    My guess is that the shutdown will be overy by the 22 of August, WHY??? Because of schools starting and the state fair. They need the vets and inspectors for the fair.
    Then the politicians can go to the fair and see how well the residents fo the state took the shutdown. Should be fun!!

    1. Mike says:

      Good point! I hope to see a few of those Republican legislatures out there. That could make for some exciting times in the land of “nice”………..

  18. Moe says:

    Yep let’s do the right thing and start a recall on Dayton now!!!!! Boris Yeltsin could do a better job.

    1. Mike says:

      Why recall Gov. Dayton when he is running the state based on his campaign of raising taxes on the upper 2% and supported by 71% of the states populous?

      1. Stacy says:

        Where do you get your numbers? Dayton only got 40% of the vote. I f only two people had been running he would have lost.

        1. frozenrunner says:

          Forgot to add there is no way to determine if the remaining third party voters were the disenfranchised left, center, or right. My guess would be that by the numbers the rght leaning bolted to Emmer. He picked up about what he could.

        2. Citizen says:

          @Stacy. You don’t know if Dayton would have lost. The votes that went to Horner could just have easily gone to Dayton. For a long time voters have only had the choice between the lesser of two evils. Emmer was a convicted drunk with a large family who obviously had used state services, yet, like Michelle Bachmann, he campaigned against what he had used himself. I will not vote for a hypocrite which is why I won’t vote for Obama, nor a Rethug, either. These days 40% is a majority. Build a bridge and get over it and past it.

  19. Ali says:

    Public Union employees will go on strike in a few years and then a government shutdown will be a “good thing” because it will be for their benefit. They are the ones who are causing this budget problem with too many of them and life time inflaton proof pensions that we can never pay…

    1. SK says:

      Crazy! Haven’t you paid attention? Where do you get your news? All of the state employees could be laid off and the budget problem would not be solved. State employees are a fraction of the budget. The two big slices are Health & Human Services and K-12 Education which has caused the structural problem – which is why the State lost their AAA raiting – because Pawlenty never solved this problem and just used gimmicks instead of real revenue. And the current GOP legislators want to use the same kind of gimmicks rather than solve it.

      The problem with state employees is that too many talented individuals will be retiring in the next decade. The budgets have been cut and pinched for years which meant the younger individuals where this knowledge could have been transferred were eliminated. Who are the people will want to come and stay in state service with people like you & the GOP who keep bashing them and want to take away pay and benefits? When the economy is bad, everyone thinks they want to be a public employee. But wait until the economy grows, there won’t be a big rush of talented people wanting those jobs – to be bashed and treated this way. Yes, you do want talented people to work for the state and to stay in those jobs. Everyone claims we need to find a way to do everything better and more streamlined at the state – you need talent to accomplish this and people who will be willing to dedicate themselves to state work.

      You are totally wrong about the pension for state employees. It is true there has been problems with some of the teacher and local govt pensions. But the state pension has been one of the most solid ones. There were losses when the stock market went down – similar to everyone else but the problem was not as extreme because the state pension plan did not go for extreme cost of living raises. And legislation was passed last biennium to increase contributions from the employees to make up these losses.

  20. Freedom fighter says:

    Until Dayton gets in through his head that “we do not want nay more taxes” this thing can last for years as far as I am concerned… What is a few years of this compared to us and our grand kids being forever slaves to big government?

    1. frozenrunner says:

      The majority of the people prefer a balance of spending cuts and tax increases.

      1. taxed enough says:

        says who????

  21. Steve B. says:


  22. TuTu says:

    The Democrats are the ones who need to be recalled. After all they are the
    ones who caused this mess in the first place and it started with that idiot Mr.

    1. Mike says:


      If you look at the states history, you will find that Minnesota is a leader in education and a great place to live. It also has a rich tradition of being led successfully by the Democrat party. All these things have disappeared along with their identity to having been known as “Minnesota nice”. We have been on a steady decline in values and morality through the intransigent leadership of the Republican party. Greedy, immoral, self serving and mean, that is what Minnesota has become. No one can deny that………

      1. DARREN says:

        I can and I do.

      2. Stacy says:

        Minnesota is one of the biggest deadbeat states.

        1. Citizen says:

          @Stacy. You are free to move if you hate Minnesota so much. I am willing to fight for the things I care about–not just criticize. Nothing is ever gained by fingerpointing. The late, great Molly Ivins cautioned about listening to fingerpointers LIKE YOU! We should instead listen to the people who offer solutions. Are you part of the solution or part of the problem?

      3. Mark From Minnesota Tax Waste says:

        Don’t forget the high taxes

        1. Citizen says:

          @Mark from wherever. My above comment to Stacy is directed to you, also. If the taxes are too high you are certainly free to move to South Dakota where there is no income tax. Or Nevada, or Florida, or Texas. See, the great thing about being an American is we have a beautiful huge country in which to pick where we would like to live that matches our philosophy, too. Your constant criticism is a real drag and provides no solutions which is what we need. So become part of the solution or keep being part of the problem. The choice is yours. Either way, those of us who would enjoy a discussion don’t need your whining. You will do yourself a favor to find someplace to live that will make you happier.

  23. Minnesota needs to learn how to vote says:

    You guys are all nuts!! They just need to work together and compromise! Both are equally to blame. Get to work!!! Just because you cant get along or agree doesn’t mean both sides can just throw up their arms and give up, and that is what is happening right now. Both sides are too stubborn. Also Minnesota voters need to learn to vote and things like this wouldn’t happen. You can’t vote for a Democrat governor and a republican house of senate. If you vote that way, you are nuts! They wont agree and out state will shut down. Yes it is horrible that you have to be one sided in how you vote, unless you vote independent, but this is the way politics work in the USA. Stop just voting for people randomly. BECOME EDUCATED VOTERS!

  24. Carlton says:

    Who is the real TuTu? The real TuTu cna answer this: How much of every dollor earned shoud a persone earning $250,000 a year be taxed?

  25. Sam I am says:

    Governor Dayton has said unless he gets a tax increase he will keep it shut down until the next session which is Jan/Feb 2012.

    What the heck kind of leadership is that. Pass the bill you wree handed Governor.

    1. ME says:

      Hold your ground Govenor Dayton. State worker!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  26. It's Not Rocket Science says:

    Compromise is simple. Raise taxes on the wealthy, cut welfare and other programs. Balanced budget. It is not rocket science. The problem is twofold. Republican ideology and a desire to return to the late 19th century robber baron era with no middle class, some ultra wealthy, and a bunch of serfs is one issue. I am uncertain why no one sees that they do NOT care about the middle class.

    The other problem is Democrats giving away the store as if funds come from a bottomless pit of wealth.

    Neither party deserves to be in office.

    1. ffeiloiiis says:

      How about raise taxes on the middle class too? Oh, you don’t like that because that’s you, right? But its ok with you to raise them on other folks? Slimeball.

  27. larry says:

    Why blame the republicans?
    They tried to pass a lights on bill to keep you employed.

    1. ME says:

      only so they could drag there feet

      1. Coolaid says:

        Wow keep drinking the coolaid Me.
        Drag their feet and keep 20,000 people employed.
        Drag their feet and keep the parks open for the Fourth.
        Drag their feet and keep funds available for the needy.
        Wow, that sure was irresponsible of those repub’s for offering that….

    2. Mike says:

      Republicans passed a bill that will not work and shift taxes to the people hurting the worst! How can you put more money in one pocket to avoid paying bills and think that the bill disappears? That is the logic you propose. Republicans are shifting the costs of running the government out of the pockets of the wealthy and dumping them on the middle class!

  28. fredflint says:

    Dayton is a fricking loser.

    1. ME says:

      So are you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    2. Mike says:

      I know you are, but what am I?

  29. It didn't have to be this way says:

    This didn’t have to be this way. Here’s ways that Dayton could’ve stopped this from happening or made it less painful:

    1) Could’ve passed the balanced budget presented to him.
    2) Could’ve passed parts of the budget they were in agreement on (thursday night they were in agreement on 95% of the budget and he still said shut it down).
    3) Passed a “lights-on” bill to continue negotiations ( that last week they were talking and working towards a deadline, no there’s no deadline, there’s no talking).

    Finally, he could’ve done what he PROMISED the state when he said he wouldn’t shutdown government over a tax raise. He shut it down because he couldn’t taxe 7700 people. So he put 30,000 out of work instead.

    Yep, this guy cares so much about the little guy. It’s all a political stunt and he’s playing with every Minnesotan in the process.

  30. wootieup says:

    Can we stop blaming one side or another??? BOTH are at fault, acting like big babies and not making any effort at this point. 2 meetings that last less than an hour in a week does not get you anywhere…they are not even trying which makes it so much more aggravating. It’s really fun to have an unemployed spouse whose area has sufficient funds and not part of the budget, but they are shut down and being punished. Can we sue these people for not getting their work done? Can we impeach??? Can we get a law passed that forbids shutdowns in the event they cannot make a decision on a budget. What can the lowly people do who are helpless against them???

    1. Recall says:

      First a Proposed Recall Petition, must be submitted to the Minnesota Secretary of State specifying Nonfeasance, which means a state official failed to perform his duties. If the petition is for a statewide office it must also include 25 signatures of Minnesota residents who are eligible to vote. The signatures are then checked by the Secretary of State and if verified are sent to the Minnesota Supreme Court.
      The Court then has 10 days to decide if the grounds for recall stated in the petition are sufficient and meet statutory requirements. If the requirements are met a “Special Master” is appointed to hold a public hearing to decide if the allegations in the grounds for recall are true. The Special Master then submits a report to the Supreme Court regarding the truth of the allegations. The Supreme Court will then accordingly decide, based on the report, whether or not the grounds are true and if they are, the court will order the secretary of state to issue a recall petition.

    2. Mike says:

      In two years Republicans will be up for election. You can make your vote count by showing up at the polls. Gov. Dayton was elected based on a platform of raising taxes and supported by 71% of the populous. He is doing what the people who elected him support.

      1. Stacy says:


        Get your head out of your A$$. Dayton only got 40% of the vote!

        1. frozenrunner says:

          Dayton’s 54% approval rating in the latest poll. One needs to be careful in which poll you use as many use landline only, Strib did not.
          Can’t go there now but also be mindful that the total number of votes for Dayton esceeded the number of votes tallied for republican representatives or senators.

          1. Citizen says:

            @frozenrunner. Logic is lost on Stady. She is a one-comment, one-trick pony, probably bought and paid for to post this nonsense by her GOP handlers. You make an excellent point about polls.

  31. sam says:

    I find it interesting that we keep pointing fingers at each other but really there are only 336 people at any one time responsible for how the state functions or not. 134 in the House, 201 in the senate and one Governor. The rest of the 5.3 million people are blameless. The elected passed all the laws and spent all the money bringing us to where we are. And they are the only ones that will be able to solve the issues in front of us. They are the ones that wanted the state to do what 30+ billion will do – not us. Whats unfortunate for all of us is, we elected those who we have and have to wait until the next set of elections to again make the massive change that seems so apparent.

    1. Comrade Lenin and Chairman Mao says:


      67 Senators
      134 Representatives

      201 TOTA Legislators

      Comrade Lenin and Chairman Mao

  32. Mike says:

    It’s all part of the process. I really believe that our lives will be significantly changed for the worst over the next few years. You can not run a country without a common interest for the populous. The Republicans are setting the stage to further erode the middle class who drive two thirds of the economy through consumption. Real wages have not risen since the 70’s and tax policies have benefited the wealthy. Costs are soaring through the roof, our homes have been devalued, medical and dental care has risen with inflation, people do not have the buying power they once did, husbands and wives both work and it is not enough, retirement is not in the equation when the bar will be raised, people who hit middle age are struggling to find jobs and are told they may never find one, the cost of education can no longer be justified and is not supported by the wage of ability to find work. It is not looking good. Eliminating taxes sounds like a good proposal, but the consequences of shifting them downward is and will be proven to be disastrous for our country.

  33. Darren says:

    Paul, I haven’t used one Minnesota Government Service since the state closed up. . Sorry, not all of us need government.

    1. Sean says:

      Drive down the road? Darren you really don’t have a clue about what the state does.

  34. Darren says:

    Thats right, I don’t care what you need. I pay my own way, I don’t use the government and no one else that is capable should either. The government pays you more to have more babies that you can’t afford, the government pays for kids food that parents can’t afford, the problem is government isn’t a seperate word, government means the people who pay the bills, and that is who I am. A person who pays my taxes, works 60 or more hours a week. And what do I see, people scamming the system. I feel sorry for those who really do need our help who don’t get what they deserve because of all those who are too laxy to get off their butts.

    1. mj says:

      Right on Darren. Cut the give away programs and problem solved.

  35. Darren says:

    If we are all such good people, either party, Then maybe this situation is more then the human I can see. Maybe something else is in charge of this planet and its taking all of government down with it. Its all in the Bible. It says exactly what is happening now to our government, and its going to just get worse.

    1. Darren says:

      My bad. WHen I said I, what I meant was eye. Sorry. Been working a 14 hour shift.

  36. Common sense says:

    For edification, % of votes in last Govenor elections:

    Mark Dayton: 43.63%

    Tom Emmer: 43.2%

    Tom Horner: 11.9%

  37. John James says:

    If our legislators would simple go by the old adadge that government should be the last resort to a problem and not the first we would be in a lot better shape. We have the best system on earth and this relentess attack on it by people that want government to take over our daily lifes threatens its very existance. We have a choice to make as a people and it is playing out in Minnesota and Washington. Do we want the freedoms our country was founded on or do we want to change this into a country that dictates how we live and act as a society.

    1. Common sense says:


      I don’t think it’s that simple. But just to be clear, are you saying that if they raise more taxes by taxing the richest 2%, that we are letting Government dictate our lives?

      Just want to be clear of your argument.

      Thank you, CS

  38. Common sense says:



    2010-11 10-2012
    31.1 34.2


    2010-11 10-2012
    30.1 39.0

    1. Common sense says:

      I know the Senate is looking at further cutting out some more H&H expenses, since they did it last fiscal year. But you eventually hit a wall were infustructure is actually impacted. Besides, it still will not make up the entire difference of more than $1.5 billion that would still exist. That’s why they are talking about shifting an additional $1.5+ billion in school spending to the next year again. Dayton and the Dems don’t like this because it takes away from the schools.

      So it comes down to divert payments to the schools (and cut H&H), or raise taxes on the richest 2% (temporarily), or a combination 1 and 2.

      It’s clear the republicans want option 1, and nothing else.

      It’s clear that the Dem’s are willing to do option 2 or 3. 3 would be the middle ground for the Dems.

      Basically, if you look from a historical perspective the Gov’t already made some hard cuts in the last budget in H&H and the school roll-over, Now the Dem’s are working to even things out and continue support from the last budget.

  39. middle of the road says:

    I have to agree with one poster above, this is all Pawlentys’ fault. He did not do this exact same thing over his term and fix the structural problem created by 38 years of democrat spending like there is no tomorrow. If then Governor Pawlenty would have vetoed a bloated budget bill and made the democrats feel the pain of giving away money we did n ot have, maybe we would not be in this mess today. Oh wait, he did and the democrats over rode his veto and spent again like there was no tomorrow and that is why we are in this mess today. So nice to be able to read facts and know what really happened….

    and before the uneducated start to preach the party line, recall that a governor can write no law, EVERYTHING Pawlenty did sans the “emergency budget” he did with full democrat approval before he did it.

  40. KeepItReal says:

    There is no class warfare, just a liberal term for “give us more of yours…were too lazy to make our own.” MN has a spending problem…cut up the credit cards (accounting shifts, delayed payments and excessive spending.) We live in a country of opportunity for all. Anyone can work hard and make a great living. Everyone faces challenges, some more than other, but the opportunity is there. Creating massive-social-state entitlements will do nothing but continue Americas slide.

  41. Darren is correct says:

    Darren has it nailed. I will go further and say I hope most of the families of the laid off gov workers are feeling the pain. Sure they will get unemployment and full back pay for time not worked but in the mean time, I hope they have all sleepless nights. Disgusting gov workers are the lowest form of employee which is a side effect of disgusting democrat lawmakers. Oh and still no hint of any effects of the shutdown with me of the folks I know.

  42. suffering for no reason says:

    im moving to south sudan
    there free now
    minnesota is in slavery
    bachman thinks blacks are better off as slaves
    thats why she shut down the government to make us suffer

  43. kevin says:

    citzen,your just like all the other left wing morons. When you go to protest you have to see how much damage you can do or how much it will cost to have the national guard come out to stop the distruction. Reference the 2008 rnc convention and the wisconsin legislative session.The only way you bleeding hearts know how to protest is to do damage and then let eveyone else pay the repairs. Didn’t you get any love when you were young?

  44. sw says:

    Yes. Like social security and health care. Then my taxes will be low and I will spend, spend, spend to get this economy going!! Except now I have to save way more money than my measly tax break gave me to pay for retirement + health care when I age, when my spouse ages, and don’t forget my ailing parents who will lose benefits. Back in the day, it was up to the children to pay for the health care of their parents. Is that the system the republicans want back? If so, I should start saving even more of my money now. Sorry small businesses. Hope you enjoy the tax break because demand for your goods just fell sharply. This makes no economic sense to me.

  45. sw says:

    Anyone see the article today in the Star Trib that showed a higher percentage of republicans continuing to take paychecks than democrats during the shutdown? Another dose of hypocrisy by the right; almost getting used to it now though.

  46. Middle of the road says:

    I wish that the press would quit pimping “the right this” and “the left” that and work on getting down to the structural problem with our system. We have spent too much, period end of story. State employees are not the problem, I used to be one, but decided I wanted to make 30% more in the private sector so I left. They are not the propblem and they are not the enemy. the problem is 38 years of “progressive” policy giving away money to programs that do not work and then instead of fixing or removing those programs, our legislature “tweaked” them and gave them more money. In my eyes the republicans are trying to fix a structural problem by not spending more than we bring in. that is not a hard concept to understand, but the where the money comes from, who has money, and who is really footing the bill is the real problem. The top 10% pay 74% of the bill, but now our governor wants to MAKE them pay more. While appealing because you are only affecting 2% of the population, they obviously have the resources to take their money and leave. Not only that, but you still are not fixing the structural problem of tying services to the economy. Once we tie these two together, then our government really would have to work and drive and control the economy, otherwise they lose money to buy votes with and I mean that as a shot at both the left and the right.

  47. kevin says:

    Citizen, I agree with your son if he’s talking entitlements. Maybe you should listen to him. I think he’s trying to get thru to you.

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