Minnesota shutdown is longest in state history, with no end in sight

MN-capital11.jpg
The state's getting bad press.
Minnesota's state government shutdown is officially the longest in state history.

But elected officials in the only state that hasn't finalized a budget aren't in a rush to end the gridlock. No meetings are scheduled between Gov. Mark Dayton and Republican leaders today.

With the shutdown in its second week and no end in sight, the state is starting to get bad press, nationally and internationally.

With 22,000 state workers laid off until the two sides make a deal, lawmakers seem content to let the shutdown roll along until one side flinches. Each week those state employees go without pay is another $23 million in lost purchase power, and more than $2 million in state revenue that would be coming in from lottery tickets and state park rentals.

It seems like those numbers would add up quickly, and hurt. But not to Rep. Larry Howes, R-Walker, who said that if the shutdown lasts until the state fair, which kicks off August 25, it could last until January.

The impasse is bringing attention to Minnesota in the worst way. The state has been analyzed as a political failure by both the New York Times and the Economist magazine, which covers the shutdown in this week's print edition:

Neither side seems to have a clear advantage in terms of public opinion. Minnesotans seem mildly exasperated by the situation rather than enraged.

The end of this week marks the first two-week pay period for those 22,000 employees. A couple weeks after that, credit cards, rent and mortgage payments will start to come due. Maybe then we'll see some rage.

Don't worry about the legislators, though. Most of them are still getting their paychecks.

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15 comments
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Funkymonk
Funkymonk

The only thing that I noticed was that there was less traffic in the mornings.

Sam
Sam

As I understand it, the goal is to balance the budget while not significantly harming any Minnesotans who are dependent on state funded programs, and if possible to help improve the state's economy. A rising tide floats all boats is a popular maxim that comes to mind. And the proven and time-tested means to achieve the above goals, is to reduce taxes or hold down tax rates. That may sound counterintuitive, but throughout history it has succeeded. And, in fact, by reducing or holding down taxes, the rich actually do end up paying more, whereas by increasing tax rates on high income earners, the result consistently is reduced government revenue. If you don't believe me, read the below two articles. Governor Dayton unfortunately is wrong. By shutting down government and pressing for increased taxes in the form of taxing the so-called rich, he's hurting Minnesotans both short term and potentially long-term if his proposals are adopted. Here are the article links:

http://www.heritage.org/Resear...

http://www.house.gov/jec/fisca...

Dave2
Dave2

   Lawmakers need to be assured that most of the public believe that the whining Republican temper tantrums against tax hikes for the wealthy are the cause of the shutdown. Why the wealthy, who have the most, and prosper most from the state, are so greedy and cheap that they refuse to pay even a little more in taxes, is to coin new meaning to the word selfish. If paying their fair share – in terms of sacrifice – will cause them to leave the state, they goodbye, fair well, so long, don’t let the door slam on your ass, ...and good riddance.

Mn Voter
Mn Voter

You mean the Rich like Mark Dayton who had a taxpayer paid "Chef"? He draws interest from North or South Dakota tax exempt bonds and doesn't pay one cent of Minnesota Tax on it. The state workers herd needs to be thinned by 11,000. The top pay needs to be capped at $75,000 and all state workers need to have a 401K instead of defined benefits. If they don't like it they can get a private sector job. If you don't like it you can leave the state, goodby, fair well, so long, don't let the door slam on your ass..and good riddance.

jww
jww

MN Voter:

I guess Ill have to repost my comment , since the last one was sent to the moderator.  My comment was that , once again, you don't have your facts straight.  Interest earned from municipal bonds issued by a state other than Minnesota (Like your ND SD example) is exempt from Federal income tax but IS TAXABLE at the state level.  Further, any capital gains from the sale of those bonds are taxable at BOTH the Federal and State level.  Mark Dayton's municipal bond investments would only be tax exempt in MN if they were MN municipal bonds....which would also mean that he would be taking his personal money and investing it in MN.  So much for your "not one cent" theory/  Look it up.

You are, once again, blinded by your bullshit partisan allegience.  Like Bachmann, the facts must simply not apply to you. 

jww
jww

Bring back Jesse:  What are you talking about?

Bring back Jesse
Bring back Jesse

Why is it that when Republican say nasty things about Democrats, it's sexaul harassment, prejudise, or bigatry.  When Democrats say nasty things about Republicans, its $3.99 a minute (Or I need more, more, more).....oh did I just called the Dems a whore?

jww
jww

MN Voter:

Once again you don't have your facts straight...too many hours on the michelebachmann.com website I guess.  Any interest earned on municipal bonds issued by a state other than MN (like ND and SD) would be exempt from FEDERAL income tax but WOULD be subject to MN state income tax.  And any capital gains on those municipal bonds would be subject to BOTH federal and state income tax.  Look it up.  Are you too lazy to find this stuff out or are you just hoping other people are too stupid to know when you are filling the air with complete bullshit?  Or is this just another situation where the facts don't apply to your partisan rhetoric? 

Johnny
Johnny

The next steps IMHO are for cities/counties to start setting up their own services to replace state services and then going straight after the tax/spending authority.  Sure, 'local' services might not be as efficient as state services, but they are going to be a hell of a lot more responsive to local needs.  That's the point of government, to be responsive, not to be centralized. As far as staffing goes, if state employees are all that valuable, I'm sure that the newly reconstituted city/county service bureaus will be falling all over themselves to hire.

Zeroisanumber
Zeroisanumber

I'm sure that Hennepin county will have no problem getting Cook county to tax their residents for road refurbishments in Minneapolis.

RW
RW

The state parks are self sufficient, shutting them down is simple political maliciousness. 

Bob
Bob

Fuck the public employees, good riddance to bad trash.

John
John

Mindy Greiling isn't the problem.  It's her GOP colleagues who won't budge one inch or make any compromises that are.  Lambast them.

Zeroisanumber
Zeroisanumber

All of our elected officials have failed, all of them need their feet held to the fire.

Zeroisanumber
Zeroisanumber

I'm enraged. I've been calling my state rep Mindy Greiling and lambasting her every day. I suggest that others do likewise with their respective representatives.

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