Democrat Cronyism – Met Council Chair Gets Double The Salary

No Democrat office holder gets to complain about anyone making too much money at their business after Governor Dayton doubled the pay of his chief of staff’s husband. Source: KSTP

The chairman of the Metropolitan Council’s salary has doubled even after lawmakers mothballed hefty raises for state commissioners.

Documents obtained by The Associated Press show Adam Duininck is making nearly $123,000 as the job moves to a full-time role. That’s twice as much as previous Metropolitan Council leaders.

Gov. Mark Dayton’s spokesman Matt Swenson says the governor has authority to make the job full time and pay Duininck as a full-time commissioner. Dayton says it should be a full-time gig.

But Republicans are crying foul. They say Duininck’s raise violates a deal from earlier this year that reversed major salary increases for members of Dayton’s cabinet.

Top legislative leaders from both parties told the AP they believed Duininck’s salary would stay at about $60,000 under legislation freezing the salary hikes.

 

MN Media Rushing To Democrat’s Aid On Budget Bloat

If this MinnPost headline doesn’t expose the bias in Minnesota political reporting, I don’t know what does.

Senate budget seeks to bridge gulf between Dayton and GOP
By Briana Bierschbach | 03/27/15

 

Bias?

Yes.

In the negotiations to craft Minnesota’s next two-year budget, Democrats in control of the state Senate are casting themselves as the wise old sages of state government.

That was the dominant theme of a Friday morning press conference revealing the DFLers blueprint for a $42.7 billion budget, which will cut taxes less than Republicans in control of the House want and spend less than Gov. Mark Dayton wants. With a nearly $1.9 billion budget surplus to spend, Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk said the key ingredient in their budget is pumping $250 million into the state’s budget reserve to help provide a buffer from future budget deficits.

It is true there is a large gap between what Governor Dayton has proposed and what House Republicans have proposed. The problem is that the Senate Democrat proposal is not a compromise as implied.

House GOP: $39.95 Billion

Senate Dem: $42.27 Billion

Dem Dayton: $42.79 Billion

Are the Senate Democrats really being reasonable? I mean does their offer that is almost as much as Dayton’s really a grand compromise?

I mean MinnPost even included a graphic from MMB that clearly shows the Senate Democrats’ proposal is almost exactly the same as Dayton’s. And the image is an interactive one on MinnPost’s site that displays the proposed budget amount for each one if clicked on.

chart

 

People on the right often complain why Republicans can’t win and why Minnesotans are so likely to vote Democrats. I contend that they don’t know any better. The way the news in Minnesota is presented is biased towards supporting the liberal policies of Democrats.

The facts of the matter is spending is growing at out of control increases every budget cycle. Democrats are actually trying to claim that the proposed Republican tax cuts could lead to future budget deficits…. But they ignore how the massive spending increases would do exactly that same thing.

Democrats want to spend the surplus. That’s the headline. That’s the story here. But instead, the media in Minnesota is devoted to spinning the Democrat lies and misleading voters.

Dayton’s Free Pre-School Push Scam

Here’s a glimpse at where the rubber meets the road in Governor Dayton’s latest union kickback initiative: All day pre-school. Source: ABC Newspapers

“Space and staffing are probably the big changes that would need to be made,” she said.

Space is at a premium in the Anoka-Hennepin School District.

Currently, Anoka-Hennepin provides preschool programming for 1,250 kids, about two-thirds of those 4-year-olds. With programming lasting only two to three hours on a given day, the district can use one classroom for multiple groups of students, which full-day preschool does not allow.

Almost 2,875 4-year-olds live in the district this year, according to census data. If the district maintains a similar number of 4-year-olds in 2016 and two-thirds of those kids enroll in pre-K, that means Anoka-Hennepin has to make space for almost 1,900 4-year-olds. Staffing at a 20:1 ratio would require 95 classrooms.

“While we welcome being able to support early learners, there are some significant space considerations that would have to be figured out,” Kerr said.

Currently, preschool classes are held in various elementary schools, the Educational Learning Center and strip malls across the district.

Dayton’s current funding source is one time surplus money and as the Anoka Hennepin administrators point out, it likely won’t even cover all the costs to actually implement this unneeded mandate. Where the funds will come from at the local level to cover the costs of finding more classrooms and facilities is unclear. So is where the funding will be found for future budget cycles.

Didn’t we just add all-day kindergarten? How much did that added mandate stress school district budgets? But more importantly, is it paying off?

If you ask me, this was just another payback for the unions by Dayton in return for them working so hard on his reelection.

Dayton & Betty 180 Degrees Apart On Obamacare & MNSure

Did Dayton Screw Up MNSure?

The United States has a population of roughly 318,000,000. Take a look at what an entrenched left wing ideologue who doesn’t have to fave voters to be held accountable had to say.

McCollum Obamacare Tweet

 

This was done on the very same day that left wing ideologue Governor Mark Dayton finally admitted he had been ignoring reality all along on Minnesota’s failed version of Obamacare called MNSure.

Kill MNsure? Maybe, Dayton says

Gov. Mark Dayton said Monday that he is open to abolishing MNsure, the embattled health insurance exchange he has championed and defended from Republican attacks.

That’s the most drastic option Dayton mentioned in a letter calling for a task force to study “future options” for health care reform in Minnesota.

Dayton said the task force could consider:

— Replacing MNsure with a federal health insurance exchange.

— Keeping MNsure but seeking a federal waiver to make major reforms.

— Simply making minor adjustments to shore up the agency.

“The task force would consider all conceivable options,” Dayton wrote in the letter to legislative leaders.

Gee. Those were all of the things that his Republican opponents were saying a year ago that were flatly denied by Dayton and the press. Heck, up until 1 month ago, Dayton and Minnesota Democrat leaders were claiming everything was working just fine.

But on one hand you a have a Washington Democrat praising Obamacare but on the other you have a Minnesota Democrat admitting the ruse is up and MNSure (the State version of Obamacare) is an absolute failure in need of drastic fixes or all out scrapping.

Well main stream media. What side of this argument are you on now?

And do you think maybe the DFL Senate & House Republican Caucuses in Minnesota have beefed Dayton to let MNSure die because they are on the ballot in 2018 and MNSure is an even bigger mess than previously admitted?

Don’t forget, they just had to lower enrollment goals again for next year because consumers have seen through the fog and realized its better to shop in the real private market without Government interference.

Give It All Back – 42% Budget Growth Is Too Much

There apparently is controversy in the GOP ranks at the Capitol on what to do with the $2 billion surplus for some reason. This shocks me. I mean how could you not instinctively just say, give it all back?

An opening hand of anything less than 100% give it all back is disappointing and won’t sit well with the public in 365 days when Legislators once again face activists and voters.

The rate of growth in stats spending under Governor Dayton is mind blowing. The very first budget that he begrudgingly signed for 2010-11 was $30 billion. His proposed 206-17 budget starts at $42.5 Billion.

THAT’S A $12.5 BILLION INCREASE IN UNDER DAYTON!

A 42% spending increase under Gov.Dayton! 

MN budget 20 yr chart

Any Republican offer that includes any of the budget surplus is a stamp of approval to the ginormous spending increases from Dayton and Democrats over the last 4 years.

I know it is not easy to “cut”. I know the press and the minions on the left will hammer any Republican who dares to return money back to the hard working people of Minnesota. I do. Its going to make being a Legislator uncomfortable trying to reduce or at least freeze state spending.

Failure to give it all back is only going to galvanize the DFL stranglehold on power in this state.

Dayton’s Unsustainable Budgeting

The Minnesota budget has increased 200% over the last 20 years. I created this chart that shows the growth is Minnesota’s general fund spending since 1992. I included the percent increase because its shocking. (Budget numbers are from MMB)

MN budget 20 yr chart

Governor Dayton is proposing 2 different spending numbers.

Proposed budget: $42,497,000

Transportation plan: 10 year spending: $8.731 / 10 = $0.8731 per year making his budget actually: $43,370,000

 

His budget, and the extra taxes on top of his budget for his transportation plan which is the only way he will fix our crumbling roads and bridges, would add either a 7% increase or a 10% spending increase.

Oh I know. a $10 billion increase in State Spending since Dayton took office “sounds” like a lot of money……..

Take a look at what Minnesota’s budget since 1992 would look like with just cost of living adjustments.

3% COLA Growth
1992-93 (Actual) $14,496,834.00
1994-95 $14,931,739.02
1996-97 $15,379,691.19
1998-99 $15,841,081.93
2000-01 $16,316,314.38
2002-03 $16,805,803.82
2004-05 $17,309,977.93
2006-07 $17,829,277.27
2008-09 $18,364,155.59
2010-11 $18,915,080.25
2012-13 $19,482,532.66
2014-15 $20,067,008.64

 

Bi-Partisan Deal Allows Dayton To Hand Out Pay Raises Still

Albeit, he only has one day to do it, I personally wouldn’t tempt Mark Dayton to see how much taxpayer money he could hand out to his friends in 24 hours with out any Legislative approval or oversight.

Why would it be wrong to hand out pay raises with out Legislative oversight and approval on 364 days of the year, but OK on just one?

KSTP: Dayton Won’t Reveal Commissioners’ Raises

Gov. Mark Dayton isn’t revealing what kind of raises he’ll grant agency commissioners under a bill that gives him a one-day window to decide.

Dayton made it clear Thursday he’ll sign a bill negotiated with the House, Senate and his administration. Both chambers are due to take final votes later in the day.

The bill wipes out big raises he awarded to his cabinet last month, but lets him give new ones on July 1. After that, any commissioner pay hikes would need legislative approval. Asked about his intentions, The Democratic governor would only say: “Ask me on June 30th.”

Well played Gov. Dayton. Well played.

It appears the bill will be voted on later today. Contact your Legislators to tell them to vote against this agreement.

Bombshell New Report Confirms That The DFL Is The Real Party Of the Rich

From Minnesota Campaign Finance Board Candidate Handbook (pdf).

(Page 18) Special source limits

Finally, there is a limit on the total amount that a candidate’s committee can receive from certain types of donors. This limit is called the “special source limit”. The donors included in this limit are often called “special sources”, and include political committees and funds, lobbyists, and associations not registered with the Board. Contributions from large donors no longer count toward the special source limit.

[…]

Office

Aggregate special source limits for the 2015-2016 election cycle segment

Governor/Lt. Gov.

$313,000

Attorney General

$41,700

Secretary of State, State Auditor

$20,900

State Senate

$18,000

State Representative

$12,500

But they used to. A Federal Judge struck down the law for the 2014 election cycle. A damning new report from Institute for Justice shines a spotlight on which 2014 Minnesota Governor candidate benefitted the most, Democrat Mark Dayton or Republican Jeff Johnson.

(Source: MPR Blog: Capitol View) According to the group’s analysis, one or both candidates in half of Minnesota’s legislative and statewide races benefited from the rule’s suspension. That includes Gov. Mark Dayton, who raised $744,000 more than he would have under the old rules. His opponent Republican Jeff Johnson raised $25,000 more than he would have under the old rules.

That means major donors, as in people who can write checks for over $500 to $1,000 overwhelmingly supported Mark Dayton in the 2014 election.

That flies contrary to every single thing the DFL and Minnesota media portray about political contributors. Spread this one far and wide folks because the data backs up critics of this left wing talking point that the GOP is the party of the rich. 

Many of us have long since believed that the party of the rich is the DFL. They are supported by a bunch rich people who have theirs already, which is why they don’t mind the massive tax increases and regulatory burdens that make it nearly impossible for the average business owner to ever make it, let alone try to employ people in this state. (IE: really support the middle class.)

The MPR blog post headline shrieks of more of the same old usual bias we’ve come to expect. After all, it was a blog post by Catherine Richert. The numbers in the report show that Mark Dayton had a HUGE advantage due to the law change. In fact Dayton quadrupled what he could have received from this group of citizens under old rules.

Dayton major donor contributions in 2014. Newly allowed: $744,000 + Old limit: $313,000 = $1,057,000 total major donors.

Johnson major donor contributions in 2014. Newly allowed: $25,000 + Old limit: $313,000 = $338,000 total major donors.

Dayton raised $759,000 more dollars from wealthy donors than Jeff Johnson.

 

MNSURE: A Textbook Example Of Why Not To Govern By Emotions

Of course no one wants people to suffer with out health care. No, there aren’t people who really want people to choose between health insurance and food.

But that doesn’t mean MNSure the State’s (Failed) Health Insurance Exchange – was a good way to prevent any of the tear jerking stories used by Governor Dayton (and President Obama) to enact MNSure the State’s (Failed) Health Insurance Exchange.

MNsure audit: ‘very silly’ turf battle contributed to issues
By David Montgomery – Pioneer Press

MNsure “fell far short” of its promises to provide an easy way for Minnesotans to buy health care in its first year, a harsh new audit has found.

“In its first year of operations, MNsure’s failures outweighed its achievements,” the Minnesota Office of Legislative Audit’s months-long review of Minnesota’s health insurance exchange concluded.

This report from the Minnesota Legislative Auditor confirms many of the claims opponents of MNSure the State’s (Failed) Health Insurance Exchange, had before it was even passed. Criticisms and input ignored by Governor Mark Dayton. Many of these problems could have been prevented. The report also exposes how there have been problems identified by 3rd party professional auditing firms that have also been ignored.

Hundreds of millions have already gone into MNSure the State’s (Failed) Health Insurance Exchange. How much more will they need to have something that will work? And mind you, long before MNSure the State’s (Failed) Health Insurance Exchange became law of the law in Minnesota, well over 90% of Minnesotans had health insurance.

How much more expensive is this affordable health insurance going to be? 

You can find the report on the MN Legislative Auditor’s website by clicking here.