GOP ratchets up shutdown rhetoric

Minnesota Republican Party Chair Tony Sutton launched a new attack on Gov. Mark Dayton’s budget plan this morning, hoping to pin a possible state government shutdown on Dayton.

“That’s his plan. It’s been his plan since the state of the state, in which he referenced a shut down. If you look at his rhetoric in the last month, it’s just all been about shut down. He’s going to prove a political point, he’s going to get his way on this, or so he thinks.”

The party chair also called the governor “erratic and Machiavellian,” returning to GOP charges against Dayton during the 2010 election campaign. Sutton as well responded to what he called personal attacks against GOP legislators: Dayton suggested some were “right wing” extremists.

“Here’s a guy who’s used to getting his way his entire life. He lived in a big house full of servants, never had to work a day in his life and all this kind of stuff. And when people push back on him, he’s not used to it. So he starts name calling, and frankly engaging in activity that’s not appropriate for the chief executive of this state.”

He said the party is responding to Dayton’s call for compromise with a new website, at

Sutton denied DFL suggestions that the Republican caucus is listening more to the party than to their constituents.

“As a matter of fact, I am the servant. I am reflecting what they’re talking about and helping them make their case across the state of Minnesota. That’s what we’re engaged in. It makes good copy, but the fact of the matter is I don’t get involved in legislative matters. They’re the ones that are pursuing the legislative agenda. We can express an opinion on things, but we don’t get into the details or into the weeds. But the fact of the matter is that we’re backing up what they’re saying. The Democrats would like to say its about some party boss, or 1930s style Chicago. The fact of the matter is that these are a group of people who are principaled principled, who know what’s best for the state is to not raise taxes right now.”

Dayton is on a fly-around across Minnesota today with other DFLers, making his case for his “meet halfway” plan. He vetoed much of the GOP budget plan earlier this week.

  • danno

    Am not. Are so. Is there a playground monitor watching these Republicans.

  • Danny

    “… The fact of the matter is that these are a group of people who are principaled, who know what’s best for the state is to not raise taxes right now…” Sutton is a windbag, he also apparently doesn’t know the difference between “principAL” and “principLE”

  • John

    How can you be “Machiavellian” and “erratic” at the same time? The two traits don’t match up very well. Also, Dayton’s been state auditor, US Senator,and now governor. Sure, he has a lot of family money, and has never had to “worry” about money, but it’s absolutely LUDICROUS to say he’s “never worked a day in his life.” Total nonsense. Total.

  • B

    Looks like the GOP is back to their old tricks of spin, spin, spin. Oh wait, they never stopped.

  • Jamie

    “Machiavellian” is SO NOT what Dayton is. That’s what Republicans are. They always use this tactic. Accuse their opponents of their own “bad-ness” before their opponents can do it about them. In fact, it’s kind of a Machiavellian tactic itself. They are so full of %&$#!

    Another one of these tactics: Because Dayton mentioned not wanting a shut-down in his state-of-the-state address, they claim it’s what he’s been aiming for all along, that he’s been “eager” to have a shut-down.

    Incidentally, I don’t think Dayton has as much money any more as people think he has. He’s mentioned this himself. He sold some art last year, for example, to help finance his campaign. He said something once about not having as much of his own money to put into the campaign as he had before for his Senate campaigns. I imagine he’s doing all right, but I don’t think he has as much as Republicans try to make it sound like. (Sorry, no time for good sentence structure!)