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ST. PAUL – State Representative Bob Gunther (R-Fairmont) said he was extremely troubled by the way the 2009 Legislative Session ended in St. Paul, with the Democratic majority in the House and Senate washing their hands of a $6.4 billion deficit and forcing Governor Tim Pawlenty to do the dirty work.
“The Democrats failed to do their jobs of balancing the state budget,” Gunther said. “Their outright refusal to work out a compromise with Governor Pawlenty is an embarrassment to the State of Minnesota.”
“The only thing the Democrats have proven this session is that they are willing to blame Governor Pawlenty for everything. When they are ultimately graded on how well they led this state this year, the public will recognize that they have failed miserably.”
Gunther said he was disappointed with the Democrats insistence on raising taxes and increasing spending in the face of an unprecedented state budget shortfall.
Because Governor Pawlenty would not accept a budget proposal that included tax increases, and the House and Senate majority would not back down from this demand, Pawlenty made the decision to eliminate the budget on his own through line-item vetoes on spending bills and through executive actions.
Gunther said the Democrats failure to lead leaves Minnesota with a $3 billion budget hole.
“The Democrats had five months to reform government and make Minnesota a more job-friendly state, but they chose to increase spending,” Gunther said. “The Democrats’ irresponsible spending would have bankrupted Minnesota and killed jobs with massive tax increases.”
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