Each of the Republican members of the 2008 House of Representatives is as responsible as Gov. Pawlenty for the current mess our counties, cities and the less fortunate among us who need medical attention find themselves. If only three of these representatives had voted with the DFL majority to override Pawlenty's veto of a realistic 2008 tax bill, our state would be in a much better financial position.
Minnesota does not need new taxes. We only need to go back to the tax rates of the mid-to late 1990s when our state had surpluses, our education systems were well-financed and among the best in our nation and the business climate was progressive. The primary and often seemingly only governing strategy of our state or national Republican Party seems to be "cut taxes, stop abortion and just vote no on most everything else and may God help you if you vote to override a Pawlenty veto."
A few of them found out the extent of punishment that "Uncle Marty" would rain down on them when they voted to override a veto of a much-needed gas tax increase. Gov. Pawlenty's "long-distance veto" from Washington, D.C., of a bill to help pay for health care for the most needy, which passed both houses with bipartisan support, could give some of these Republican legislators a chance to again do the right thing and help override a nationally inspired political veto.
All of this happened while a small Republican minority in our state Senate languished in relative obscurity where they seemed unable or unwilling to contribute much to or about anything. Should the state of Minnesota continue to pay them?