Greetings from St. Paul,
Just over a week ago, we finished our work for the 2018 legislative session, and passed bills to provide tax relief, increase school safety, aid those hurt by MNLARS, and much, much more. While we met the governor past halfway to a compromise, he decided to take the partisan approach, vetoing our tax bill and our supplemental budget.
One of the main components of our tax bill is that it would have made it easier for every single Minnesota tax filer to do their taxes in 2019. By vetoing our bill, the governor made this process much harder on all Minnesotans. Not only that, but our bill lowered taxes for 2.2 million filers and included what would have been the first income tax rate cut in nearly 20 years. Our proposal simplified filing for next year and cut taxes, yet the governor still rejected the proposal.
We also passed a supplemental budget that the governor inexplicably vetoed. We had great provisions to increase school safety, help deputy registrars dealing with MNLARS, and reforms to combat the opioid epidemic. Despite all the good things we had in the bill - provisions the governor himself actually supported - he vetoed it without being able to articulate what he didn’t like. If you don’t believe me, here’s a clip from the governor’s press conference where he can’t even list what he disliked about our bill. If he wanted to turn his back on Minnesotans, I would suggest he know why he’s doing it.
When we look at what our bills would have done, it’s important to know who they might have helped. Instead, the governor put his politics first, and it’s these Minnesotans who will pay the price:
· Victims of elder abuse
· Victims of opioid addiction, and medical professionals
· Victims of distracted driving
· Special education and Head Start students
· People dealing with MNLARS hassles
· Deputy registrars whose businesses are floundering after MNLARS
· People who need mental health support, particularly farmers and students
· Farmers and agribusinesses that need Section 179 conformity for equipment depreciation
· People who live in rural areas without high-speed internet
· Students who need help to afford college
· People who need job training and businesses that need skilled workers
· K-12 students who won’t benefit from school safety funding
· All taxpayers who will have difficulty filing their taxes next year
· Voters concerned about election security
· Minnesotans concerned about privacy, data breaches, and cyber security
· CPAs and tax professionals who will be dealing with very complex tax filings
· Parents looking to find the best school for their children
· Low-income working families who rely on federal child care subsidies
· New teachers who need licenses, and schools who want to hire them
· Children enrolled in Head Start programs
· Schools that need adjustments to fully fund special education
· Patients who care about transparent pricing for health care and prescription drugs
· People with disabilities, and their caretakers, who would be affected by a 7% cut to the Disability Waiver Rate System
· Startup businesses that depend on the Angel Investor Tax Credit to grow
When you look at this list, you see how the governor’s choice to play politics will hurt residents throughout the state. I’m extremely disappointed in these vetoes, but look forward to continuing to right some of the wrongs that have plagued Dayton’s tenure.
Though we finished the legislative session, I still encourage you to call or email my office. I’m here to help in anyway I can, and have enjoyed all of our conversations over the past two years.
Lastly, but most importantly, I want to thank my brothers and sisters in arms for your dedication in defending liberty.