Zellers on professor remark: MPR misinformed me

We now know where Minnesota House Speaker Kurt Zellers got his information before making the assertion that college professors in Minnesota have been getting 20-30 percent pay increases while Minnesota families are losing 30-40 percent of their income: MPR, Zellers says.

Appearing on MPR’s Midmorning program today, a caller asked Zellers about the earlier comment, which he made this week on MPR’s Midday program. Up until this morning, Zellers had not responded to requests for his information source.

“It was a story that was on MPR last fall,” Zellers told Kerri Miller. “MnSCU bonuses to top staffers nears $300K.”

“Usually, we Republicans are the first to complain about headlines being misleading, but looking at the headline and looking at the bonuses (headline?) , the bonuses were for staffers; they weren’t necessarily for professors. I guess Brian (the caller) can say I was a little close to misinformed and what I was talking about from a family’s perspective was my neighbor. He has had his wages cut 40 percent,” Zellers said.

His response is at the 48:56 mark.

  • David W.

    That MPR story headline (as well as the story) is clear enough, so Zeller’s answer doesn’t wash. I think he came up with it after the fact as an excuse for his own misleading assertions on prof’s salaries.

  • Charlie Quimby

    There’s nothing in the headline about faculty or percentages — nor are they mentioned in the story.

    Zellers can’t even make up a good excuse for the fact he made up.

  • David

    His excuse is good enough for the zealots that want to believe him and also just happen to hate MPR.

    Then again, he could have said Obama wrote it on the moon one night and then erased it in the morning and the Cult of GOP would have believed him.

  • Joanna

    Today’s Pants On Fire award goes to Rep. Zellars.

  • Jennifer

    Even if he thinks the headline is misleading, the story itself links to a chart that lists who got the bonuses and what their title is (all were presidents, chancellors, or vice-chancellors) so it’s not so much of an excuse as an admission of poor reading comprehension.

  • John P.

    Zellers apparently gets low marks for reading comprehension. He should stick to Fox News, where they just tell him what to think. I can hardly wait to vote against him.

  • Tyler

    Taking a page from Kyl’s book, permaybehaps? #notintendedtobeafactualstatement

  • Bonnie

    On swine: Would someone please do a story on MN laws with respect to raising pigs. I have tried several times over the years by emailing the dept of ag to request information on mn laws and have not gotten anywhere. For example, is it legal in MN to chain a pregnant sow to a cement floor etc. There are appalling things going on in this industry, I am sure many are responsible and humane but I would just like to know how MN ranks in its regulations of treatment of these animals. I think/fear that MN is one of the worst in the nation, sort of along the lines of allowing bear baiting.

  • Jamie

    Bonnie, have you tried the Board of Animal Health? Their main number is 651-296-2942.

  • Paul

    Caught in a total fabrication, he decides to go with a new, even more demonstrably false fabrication? What kind of moron does that?

  • jay Sieling

    The headline was perfectly clear. And unless those presidents and chancellors are making less than 50k, the bonuses do not approach the 20-30% figure Zellers claimed. It is closer to 2-3%. Also, many of those who received the bonuses turned that money back to their institution’s foundations, which provide scholarships for needy students. Come on. This is not an explanation. It still shows his blatant disingenuous attitude toward higher education and the budget.

    I still insist these lawmakers work pro-bono in the special session that is coming.

  • Ron

    Caught in a lie, Zellers tells a another lie.

    Which is what we have come to expect. Sadly.

  • Al

    My default when I’m wrong is always to blame MPR, especially that Bob Collins character.

  • Jamie

    Unfortunately, it doesn’t matter any more when Republicans lie (which they do a LOT). It seldom hurts them in any significant way. In fact, they seem to wear their lies like badges of courage. Their core supporters probably think it’s really a great thing that they lie. Whatever wins. That’s the important thing. That’s the only thing.

  • http://norwegianity.wordpress.com Mark Gisleson

    I wish I had some links on this, but isn’t the new MNSCU administrator and his crew fairly Republican? And aren’t most of those perfessors a bit more left leaning?

    This sounds a lot like a case of someone buying into his own propaganda.