An excerpt from recent editorials in Minnesota newspapers:
From The Associated Press
On GOP's own budget:
The news ... was about as good as anyone could have hoped for. Minnesota's improving economy has lopped $1.2 billion from what had been a projected $6.2 billion budget deficit for the next two fiscal years.
Given that almost everyone in St. Paul agrees that the state won't repay its $1.4 billion debt to K-12 schools before 2014, the "real" size of the two-year budget deficit now sits at about $3.6 billion. A daunting figure, to be sure, but much less so than $6.2 billion.
So, now that we know the "real" size of the state's budget deficit, we have a simple request for the Legislature: Could we please get serious about fixing it?
The Republican Party (recently) sent Gov. Dayton a letter, reiterating their opposition to Dayton's budget proposal and any new taxes or tax increases. His response was entirely appropriate -- essentially, he told the GOP to bring him a counter-offer, rather than sitting on the sidelines lobbing grenades at his plan. ...
We're glad to hear him take such a position, because (recently) he told us that he was perfectly content to wait until late March or even early April for the GOP to get its plan together. That would be a mistake. No negotiating will occur until the Republicans put their cards on the table. ...
Let's get on with the real work. The Legislature's Republican leaders should be fast-tracking their budget-cutting plan, and Dayton already is talking about revising his proposal to reflect the new numbers. Perhaps he'll even tone down the magnitude of the tax increases he's seeking.
It's not too early for both sides to begin moving toward the middle.
-- Post-Bulletin of Rochester