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ST. PAUL – State Representative Bob Gunther (R-Fairmont) said the results of one party rule at the State Capitol were on display again recently, as Democrats in the Minnesota legislature approved a plan to build a brand new, $89.5 million office building for the Minnesota Senate.
Gunther, along with every other Republican in the Minnesota House and Senate, opposed the move.
“The Democrats increased taxes and fees on all hardworking Minnesotans by more than $2 billion last year, and increased state spending by more than $3 billion,” Gunther said. “Now they’ve rewarded themselves with a $90 million palace, to be paid for by the taxpayers.”
Gunther said some – not all – Minnesota state senators are going to be temporarily displaced while needed renovations are being made at the State Capitol. Rather than finding a cheaper, temporary office space solution for the five months or less lawmakers are in session, Democrats voted to build a brand new complex for the Senate.
Gunther said House Democrats actually held up approval of the construction plan until Senate Democrats agreed to support a state minimum wage increase to $9.50.
“Think of the good that could have been accomplished with nearly $90 million,” Gunther said. “They could have improved roads, assisted our schools, offered support to nursing homes, or decreased some of the burdens on taxpayers. Instead, the best idea Democrats could come up with was to spend all of that money on a new building for state lawmakers. “This proposal is the textbook definition of government waste, and I continue to be disappointed in the priorities being pushed by Governor Dayton and this legislative majority,” Gunther concluded.
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