By Patty Wilczek, Guest Columnist
I can’t help but chuckle at some of the claims made by Morrison County DFL chair in his column that appeared in the Oct. 27 issue of the Morrison County Record. The DFL Chair says Minnesotans got “progress” under Governor Dayton and the DFL legislature. He cherry picks studies from Forbes as a way to claim that Minnesota has moved forward, but conveniently forgets some of the harm Democrats inflicted upon us here in Greater Minnesota while attempting to rewrite history from this past legislative session.
Democrats raised more than $2 billion in taxes and hundreds of millions in fees that will impact Minnesotans of all income levels. That is a fact. Everyone pays more for the spending spree Democrats went on with your hard-earned tax dollars. They gave multi-million dollar, double-digit percent increases to fund government spending on bureaucrats in St. Paul. They used millions of dollars to bail out Minneapolis and St. Paul. They approved a $90 million new office building for senators.
On top of that, Democrats voted to bring ObamaCare to Minnesota in the form of MNsure, the new state insurance exchange. They promised lower costs and increased competition for health insurance. Instead, the results have been disastrous. More than 140,000 Minnesotans will lose their current health plan, be forced on to new plans, find a new doctor and could cost Minnesota families thousands of dollars each year. In some parts of the state, Minnesotans have just one choice for health insurance through MNsure. How is that progress?
The DFL chair claims a notion that Democrats are somehow heroes for “accelerating payments” to pay back the school shift. Democrats were outraged that the Republicans used school money in this way. The “pay back” money he refers to is actually part of the $3 billion surplus generated by the Republicans’ “no new taxes” budget. When the GOP tried to pay back the school shift money, Dayton vetoed it. Bet you never heard that in the news?
The GOP had a clear plan to pay back all the shift money they temporarily used, as well as all the school money Democrats had been shuffling around for years and kept out of the press. These DFL shenanigans go all the way back to 1983.
Democrats campaigned and were elected on a promise to pay back the school shift. They raised $2.4 billion in taxes and fees on hardworking Minnesotans and did not pay a single dollar back to our schools. In fact, due to their inaction, they increased the school shift debt by more than $70 million.
It’s telling that Democrats have to distort the truth to win. Their allies spent tens of millions of dollars slandering Republican candidates around the state, funded by liberal billionaires like Mark Dayton’s ex-wife. They talk about limiting the size of government, and growing jobs on the campaign trail, then turn around and pass policies that destroy jobs, send jobs out of state and hurt Minnesotans.
Patty Wilczek, Little Falls, is deputy chair of the Morrison County Republican Party.