Dayton says GOP budget stance not responsible

DFL Gov. Mark Dayton says he doesn’t want to see a state government shutdown on July 1, but he’s still unwilling to accept a Republican budget that makes deep spending cuts.

In advance of a scheduled meeting with GOP legislative leaders, Dayton held a news conference today to highlight what he sees as the consequences of their proposed cuts. His list included college tuition hikes, local property tax increases and reductions in subsidized health care. Dayton said Republicans’ continued opposition to tax increases or spending beyond $34 billion is “not responsible.”

“We could negotiate this within a day,” Dayton said. “But what’s stopping it is their insistence that it be $34 billion, not a penny more. Everything else just gets thrown under the bus, including the lives of Minnesotans.”

Senate Deputy Majority Leader Geoff Michel, R-Edina, said he thinks Dayton is feeling public pressure about the looming shutdown. Michel said he’s convinced the public doesn’t want any more spending.

Here’s Michel’s opening comments (Note: a protester with The Welfare Rights Committee interrupted the event):

  • danno

    After eight years of a governor with no vision beyond his own self-interest, it is very nice to have a governor whose interest is that of Minnesota and Minnesotans. Of course, the first thing on the agenda is cleaning up the mess left by his predecessor. This is what the Repubs refuse to pay for. Who votes in this state?

  • Ginny

    What danno said.

  • After listening to the interview with the State Senate and House majority leaders I was astounded at how self righteous and antagonistic they seemed toward anyone who disagreed with them. Listening to them repeat the same tired lines that didn’t answer any question was tiresome to say the least.

    I gave up on the state and federal Democrats a while ago because I thought they were too quick to roll over for the (R)’s and too afraid of a fight, but Gov. Dayton has made me reconsider.

    Governor Dayton, you keep fighting the good fight.

  • Robyn

    Can we through the Republicans under the bus and move on with Governor Dayton’s budget?

  • Ken

    Finally a Governor that understamds the real VALUES we have created over the past decades as Minnesotan’s caring for each other! Wonder why the republicans don’t see the same thing? Just look at the AVERAGE INCOME of the people in the districts that the republican leadership represent and you will see they are all so much higher than the overall average income throughout the entire state! These people do not live in the same reality as you and I do! They want to blame Dayton for the possible shutdown of state government yet it is clearly THEY who SHOULD BE blamed!! History will bear this out as this republican leadership WILL BE long remembered as having accomplished absolutely nothing EXCEPT for their unwillingness to do what they were elected to do!! They certainly are NOT caring for the people of Minnesota! They proclaim loudly and clearly that they want to protect LIFE; protect every precious and vulnerable unborn life; yet as soon as that life is born, Heaven help that life if its born with a disability or into an economically challenged household because that cry to “protect the life” goes right out the window as they slash program after program, one safety net after another safety net,”WE THE PEOPLE” have worked tirelessly to create, and yes, even demanded to have been created to care for our vulnerable citizenss ! They have their due and to hell with the rest of us! Ah, yes, they will certainly be remembered!

  • Duke Powell

    We’ve been thru this before.

    For those who say that the State has picked all the low hanging fruit in past budget reductions – well, I’ve got news for you.

    There is still fruit lying on the ground.

  • Snyder

    Duke – we keep hearing that from Republicans and their supporters.

    But we’ve had five months for specifics to be introduced on where this low-hanging fruit lies.

    Where are your specific examples of waste?

    What *specifically* would you change or cut to make state government more efficient?

    Just saying there is still fruit on the ground doesn’t get us anywhere.

  • Laurna Kay

    Why does everyone have to sacrifice except for the wealthy? They feel economic hardship the least of all of us. It doesn’t hurt them to pay more in taxes, since they have spent the last decade accumulating the majority of the nation’s wealth.

  • Deneen

    As I drove past the Maserati on my way to work yesterday, I thought that is exactly who I think should be paying higher taxes. Perhaps the GOP can identify all of the people that would be taxed and tell us how many jobs these so called “job creators” have actually created besides people involved in selling and making luxury items?

  • Minnesotan

    I say, let’s increase the tax/health impact fee on all commercial tobacco products! This creates a huge chunk of revenue while reducing the use of tobacco; therefore, the cost of healthcare!

  • Duke Powell

    Thanks for the question, Snyder, thought you’d never ask.

    I’m not going to spend a lot of time on this, but….

    Why would the State spend $2000 for a 911 call, transport, and care at an Emergency Room when a few hundred dollars would accomplish the same (or better) result?

    That’s just one example. There are hundreds more.

  • Lindsey


    How would you suggest the state cut down on ambulance costs? Really, I want to know the specifics. I’d also be happy to hear more specific examples of the hundreds way to cut spending *without* hurting the most vulnerable Minnesotans.

  • Duke Powell


    Would love to give you specifics. One problem, however. The law doesn’t allow me to be specific.

    Over the years, I have thought to chronicle hundreds of specific instances of waste in the health care system that I work in. Problem is, I can’t use it in a way that would convince you. I also can’t afford to get on the wrong side of an industry who just may like seeing things remain “as is.”