Minnesotans Need the Legislature to Compromise
As you know, the Legislature’s time to balance the states budget has passed, sending Minnesota into an unfortunate shutdown. I am deeply disappointed that we have had to go into a shutdown and regret that top leadership hasn’t been able to agree on a resolution. Although I am frustrated by the current situation, but I am confident knowing I supported multiple efforts at compromise that could have avoided this government shutdown.
Many offers were made to find a middle ground. By taking on more cuts and decreasing his tax levels, Gov. Dayton made several attempts to find a compromise. In the final hours, he made an offer that only asked Minnesota’s millionaires – the richest 7,000 people in the state – to increase their taxes and pay their fair share to help us close the biggest budget deficit in state history.
Unfortunately, Gov. Dayton’s offer was rejected by Republican leaders. Instead, they are attempting to pass an all-cuts budget that will result in middle-class families, seniors, and the most vulnerable in our state to continue bearing a higher tax burden and the entire burden of this budget crisis. As Minnesotan families continue to face troubling economic times, this is simply too much to ask.
Both sides need to meet somewhere in the middle. By electing a Republican legislature and DFL governor, Minnesotans made it clear that they want a balanced approach to the budget deficit. It is our duty to find that balance.
I know many people will be affected by this shutdown, particularly state employees and those who depend on state services. All Minnesotans will feel the effects in one way or another. No one wins in a government shutdown. We need to work to find a compromise and do it soon.
I am committed to finding that middle ground. I was involved in several education and state agency budget meetings over the last several weeks and am dedicated to finding solutions that will move Minnesota forward. I have also met with residents of our district and have listened to them share their stories and express their concerns.
I will continue following the budget negotiations closely and to work towards a compromise on the budget. I will also keep talking to and meeting with others at the Capitol to ensure that we reach a responsible budget solution as soon as possible.
As always, please contact me with questions or suggestions about any issue. Please visit my Senate website at senate.mn/senatorwiger. I also encourage you to visit me at the Capitol, or let me know if you’d like me to stop by your home or apartment. Also, please tune in to my local cable TV show, “Your Capitol: What’s Up?,” which appears on public access channels 15 and 16.