Our state District faces a fundamental fork in the road. When you step into the voting booth, and choose Democratic Farmer Labor (DFL) or Republican candidates, here is the choice.
The Republicans have proven in the legislature that they absolutely refuse to place back into our income tax code an increase on incomes over $250,000. They are protecting multi-millionaires, many of whom live more of the year in Florida and other states than in Minnesota. They are protecting them from a highest bracket tax rate that was in place during the years of Republican Gov. Arnie Carlson and Democratic Gov. Rudy Perpich, when Minnesota's economy was humming.
The result of these policies by Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty, now a lobbyist for Wall Street bankers, and the Republican legislators is multiple millions of dollars denied to our school children in kindergarten through 12th grade, forcing the school districts to borrow the millions themselves. The result is also crumbling infrastructure with roads and bridges slowly falling apart in small towns and cities, as well as rural township and county roads.
The Pawlenty-Republican program of saving the super-rich from tax levels they used to pay also has caused it to be so much more expensive for poor and middle class kids to pay for college.
It has also put so much more financial strain on our small hospitals and nursing homes, which are so difficult to keep financially afloat. Do we want the nearest hospital and nursing home to eventually be in St Cloud or the metro area and not close to where many of us live?
The reality is that Pawlenty and the Republicans increased taxes on the poor and middle class, by forcing higher property taxes. So, the only ones who were saved from higher tax rates were the very richest incomes. Nowadays, the very wealthiest in Minnesota pay a lower percentage of their taxes than 98 percent of the rest of us.
If you want to step away from these, blind and greed-based policies, vote for DFLers like District 17A State Rep. Andrew Falk, District 17 Sen. Lyle Koenen and District 17B State Representative candidate Mary Sawatzky.
Brian Wojtalewicz, Appleton
Senate District 17 DFL Chair
Harlan Broers, Clara City
Chippewa County DFL Chair