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Republican leaders tell reporters Monday they'll continue to work on a budget deal before the midnight deadline. From left are House Majority Leader Matt Dean of Dellwood and Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch of Buffalo. Tribune photo by Don Davis

Legislators go home no closer to primary goal of passing budget


ST. PAUL -- The smiles seen Jan. 4, opening day of the 2011 legislative session, became frowns by Monday as Minnesota's 201 lawmakers headed home with no idea when they will wrap up their primary job: writing a two-year budget.

Republicans who run the Legislature said they did their part before the Monday night constitutional adjournment date. They passed 10 budget and tax bills to fund state government with $34 billion for the two years beginning July 1.

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Don Davis
Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.