Monday, January 12, 2015

That didn't take long

Whenever negotiations over legislation begin between opposing parties, each throws out its own initial proposal to get the proverbial ball rolling. Neither party is delusional enough to believe the other side will fully acquiesce to the very first suggestion, so there are likely counter proposals in reserve.

I guess that's what makes so baffling the reaction of Governor Mark Dayton upon the Republican majority in the Minnesota House presenting its initial transportation package the first week of the legislative session.

Gov. Mark Dayton slammed a proposal by House Republicans that would pay for fixing Minnesota’s roads and bridges through $200 million from the state’s projected budget surplus, calling it “pure fantasy.”

“That’s not a solution. That’s not a short-term solution, that’s not a long-term solution, and it demonstrates that they don’t understand the problem, and they certainly don’t have any serious interest in finding a real solution,” Dayton told reporters at a news conference Friday, one day after the House GOP laid out its legislative priorities. He added that the Republicans’ plan to devote $750 million to transportation over four years by cutting elsewhere in the state budget was straight out of “La-La Land.”

I guess this shouldn't come as a huge shock that Gov. Dayton is conveying such agitation a mere four days into session. A little more than a week before session got started, Dayton flew off the handle over an independent group's advertisement criticizing the current teacher hiring/firing practices. Clearly he was already irritable.

If Dayton made a new years resolution to be less acerbic and curt, he lasted all of about nine days. To be fair, that's still better than some of the folks who frequented my health club the first week of 2015.


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