Independent political news, information and commentary from the Capitol and the State of Minnesota.

Emmer Misses Environment Vote - Kelliher Calls Him Out! (Full Audio)

Minnesota Capitol

May 13, 2010
Saint Paul, Minnesota
Marty Owings

At about 12:30 a.m. this morning the Minnesota House took a vote on the Omnibus environment and natural resources bill, also known as the Heritage bill. The bill passed, but Republican Tom Emmer, who had been on the House floor just a few minutes before was absent for the vote. Emmer, who is running for Governor, has missed a number of floor sessions since winning his party's endorsement two weeks ago. His missed vote tonight caught the attention of more than a few DFL Law Makers who began to Tweet about Emmer's absence. DFL Representatives Jeremy Kalin and Larry Hosch asked in separate Tweets, "Where's Tom Emmer?"

Veto From Pawlenty Sends Budget Back To The Drawing Board

Nite Cap

May 12, 2010
Saint Paul, Minnesota
Marty Owings

Governor Tim Pawlenty (R) wasted no time in issuing his veto of the budget balancing bill passed by the DFL majority legislature. That bill would have increased taxes on individual Minnesotan's earning more than six figures a year and couples making more than $200k. Pawlenty issued a statement saying, "It is nonsensical to increase taxes on job providers merely weeks after I signed a bill to provide tax incentives for Minnesota businesses to grow jobs."

The DFL Speaker of the House Margaret Anderson Kelliher fired back at the Governor saying that, "The Governor can't keep pushing this problem away with his veto pen. Ultimately, he has to work with us, Minnesota's elected representatives, to balance the budget."

DFL Proposes A Tax Increase - GOP Responds Quickly

DFL law makers today proposed a budget which includes a $400 plus million dollar tax increase. The proposal also contains a number of significant budget reduction measures including $147 million in health & human services cuts as well as $1.7 billion dollars in K12 education shifts, also known as delayed payment. The overall budget proposal contains roughly 15% in taxes, 25% cuts and 60% in borrowing.

DFL Representative Tom Rukavina said the, "we have to start somwhere....this Governor has to come around, last year he signed all the spending bills than unallotted them, where I come from when you do something like that they call you a cheat, a chiseler!"

The Governor responded quickly to the budget proposal with a press release in which he said' "The DFL’s proposed tax increase is like Jason in ‘Friday the 13th’ – it’s scary and it keeps coming back."

Coverage Of The GOP and IP Conventions

How Should The Governor And Law Makers Balance The Budget

Cut Programs
47% (15 votes)
Raise Taxes
13% (4 votes)
Cuts and Taxes
28% (9 votes)
9% (3 votes)
Shifts and Gimmicks
0% (0 votes)
Borrow Our Way Through The Recession
3% (1 vote)
Total votes: 32
Your rating: None Average: 5 (1 vote)

Governor Pawlenty Calls Emergency Cabinet Meeting To Address Minnesota's Budget Crisis

Governor Tim Pawlenty

May 6, 2010
Saint Paul, Minnesota
Marty Owings

The Governor announced today that he will convene an emergency meeting of his Cabinet Friday morning to address the looming budget crisis. The Governor's spokesman Brian McClung said that the crisis was created when the Minnesota Supreme Court, "ordered us to spend money we don't have". McClung indicated that the meeting was necessary to discuss the possibility of a Government shutdown.

As a result of the Minnesota Supreme Court ruling that the Governor exceeded his authority on unallotment, the state is now faced with a budget crisis that could exceed $3 billion dollars. When asked about possible solutions McClung stated that because of the situation the state is in, it would be difficult for it to borrow money.

LGA Cuts - Is The Governor Talking To States Mayors?

Minnesota Mayors

May 6, 2010
Saint Paul, Minnesota
Marty Owings

Have you ever wondered if the Governor meets with the States Mayors to discuss the cuts he's proposing for their cities? After all the Governor has made some time recently to travel across the country speaking to various other officials as he unofficially explores a run at the Presidency.

This isn't to say anyone should expect a busy Governor from any state to meet with the Mayors of its cities and towns, but in a fiscal crisis the likes of which we've haven't seen since the Great Depression, you'd think it might help ease the worry a bit or at least soften the blow. Especially if your talking about reducing their aid as much as 90% in some cases.

EXCLUSIVE - Senate Majority Leader Larry Pogemiller Reacts To High Court Ruling

Senator Larry Pogemiller

May 5, 2010
Saint Paul, Minnesota
Marty Owings

Senate Majority Leader Larry Pogemiller (DFL) avoided talking to the Press today about the Minnesota Supreme Court ruling on Governor Pawlenty's unallotment powers, but late tonight during a Senate debate on the Health and Human Services bill, he spoke with KFAI's Minnesota Capitol News. Pogemiller discussed his thoughts on the impact of the ruling and his expectations of the final days of session.

Here is the full audio of the interview with Sen.Pogemiller:
Click Here For The Audio.

Senator John Marty shares his thoughts on the ruling:
Click Here For The Audio.

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