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Anyone that thinks that the DFL is capable of running government hasn’t read this audit report. The opening paragraph of the report is a damning indictment of the Dayton administration. The opening 2 paragraphs of the report state “Minnesota did no t comply with Federal waiver and State requirements in overseeing centers that serve vulnerable adults who receive services through the program. To protect the health and safety of vulnerable adults, Minnesota, as the licensing agency for centers, must ensure that centers follow licensing requirements in State statutes established in its application for waiver services. These licensing requirements include health and safety and administrative requirements.

“We determined that all 20 of the centers we reviewed did not comply with State licensing requirements. In total, we found 200 instances of noncompliance with health and safety and administrative requirements.”

I wrote this post right before Christmas of 2017. This part was particularly heartbreaking:

Ehlinger’s resignation comes after media reports, including a five-part series in the Minneapolis-based Star Tribune, found residents of senior care facilities statewide were neglected, abused and robbed, but the perpetrators were often never punished and in most instances complaints were never properly investigated. The state Department of Health is responsible for licensing and oversight of senior care centers.

Putting this HHS OIG together with the Star Tribune reporting, the inescapable truth is that the Dayton administration either wasn’t aware of what was happening in the state’s elder care facilities. Either that or they didn’t care what was happening in those facilities. One person who cares is State Sen. Karin Housley:

Think about what Sen. Housley said. Gov. Dayton first heard about this issue in 2012. Despite that, “they got absolutely nothing done.” Gov. Dayton played political games rather than doing the right thing. That’s unconscionable. It’s time to throw these bums out. If the DFL won’t protect these vulnerable citizens, they shouldn’t have control of any part of state government.

Think about this: the people in charge of the Office of Health Facilities Complaints are staffed by public employee union personnel. That explains why Gov. Dayton and the DFL did nothing to fix this situation. Lives were ruined because Gov. Dayton and the DFL protected their special interest allies. That’s pretty sick.

This paragraph is particularly indicting to the Dayton administration:

The State agency did not comply with Federal waiver and State requirements in overseeing centers that serve vulnerable adults who receive services through the program. We determined that all 20 of the centers we reviewed did not comply with State licensing requirements. The 20 centers we reviewed had from 3 to 25 instances of noncompliance. In total, we found 200 instances of noncompliance with health and safety and administrative requirements.

Think about that. The bureaucrats charged with overseeing “centers that serve vulnerable adults” didn’t pay attention to what was happening in these facilities. It’s frustrating to think that the party of big government, aka the DFL, didn’t give a damn about the most vulnerable people.

From this point forward, the DFL should be called ‘the party of big, broken government’. At this point, I haven’t seen proof that the DFL gives a tinker’s damn about these vulnerable citizens. Further, how many things must the DFL royally screw up before people decide that they can’t be trusted to run anything beyond a lemonade stand?

CNN’s article about President Trump starts off by reading like a fashion critique rather than like a serious news article.

Early in the article, it says “This may be the first Department of Justice criminal investigation ordered via Twitter feed. Given the importance of a presidential decision regarding a possible criminal investigation, the use of Twitter was completely inappropriate. It trivializes the entire process. What’s next in the presidential communication arsenal, the use of Facebook and Instagram with photos?”

The message from that paragraph seems to be ‘how dare he use Twitter to express his opinion’. That’s kind of disappointing considering the fact that the investigation President Trump ordered was about determining whether the Obama Justice Department or the Obama FBI sought to infiltrate the Republicans’ presidential campaign for strictly partisan reasons. At a time when people get their news from social media, why wouldn’t President Trump use Twitter to put pressure on the Deep State? Why wouldn’t President Trump use Twitter to put John Brennan, Jim Comey and Jim Clapper on notice that they’d better hire a good lawyer?

The CNN article also treats this situation like it was normal:

In modern times, though, most presidents have taken a hands-off approach with respect to specific criminal investigations in a deliberate effort to keep them out of partisan politics and to preserve public respect for the integrity of federal law enforcement authorities.

This investigation is totally about partisanship. The fact that the NYTimes and the Washington Post tried spinning it as the Obama administration’s attempt to protect the Trump campaign is laughable. It’s disgusting that CNN tries peddling that same line in their article:

Part of the DOJ and the FBI ‘s job is after all the conduct of counterintelligence investigations and, if warranted by the evidence, the warning of presidential candidates that the Russians might try to infiltrate their campaigns to influence the American election. One would think that Trump would be grateful rather than suspicious about the warning.

Apparently, CNN didn’t notice that the DOJ and FBI didn’t warn the campaign. Rather, when then-President-Elect Trump insisted that his campaign had been surveilled, people openly ridiculed him, saying that couldn’t happen in America. Now they’re peddling this infiltration of the Trump campaign like it’s a public service? Seriously?

In the end, Trump’s attempt to embarrass his own Department of Justice and FBI is likely to wound only his own presidency. If Inspector General Horowitz makes the highly unlikely finding that the DOJ and the FBI acted criminally in their conduct of a counterintelligence operation related to the Trump campaign, a criminal referral will be necessary.

I’m almost to the end of the article and the ‘reporter’ still hasn’t told us what the investigation is about. I’ve heard about burying the lede but this is ridiculous.

The lede should be that Obama DOJ or FBI political appointees might have tried interfering in a presidential election. While the article hints at that, it certainly doesn’t lead with that.

Sunday’s Twitter order to commence a new investigation to smear the Obama administration is likely to backfire and extend the Mueller investigation. It may also cause Mueller to look at an interesting new idea — was the presidential order to commence such a frivolous investigation itself really an attempt to block the progress of the Mueller investigation and obstruct justice?

What would a CNN article be without them defending either Hillary or the Obama administration? Here’s something for CNN to think about. The thought of a presidential administration of one political party using its intelligence services to gather information on the presidential campaign of the other political party is a true threat to our system of government. There’s nothing trivial about such an investigation. Watching Kimberley Strassel lay this out is what real journalism looks like:

Unlike this CNN ‘article’, Kim Strassel’s articles have been the work product of a professional journalist.

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According to this Strib editorial, the Met Council is just terrific. Apparently, they don’t think the same about Jason Lewis. The editorial’s opening paragraph states “Second District Republican U.S. Rep. Jason Lewis is attempting to apply the heavy thumb of the federal government to tip the scales in a long-running debate over the composition of the Metropolitan Council. We think Lewis and the feds should keep their hands off. This is a matter Minnesotans can and should decide for themselves.”

Actually, it isn’t just a local matter. That’s because many bodies like the Met Council exist across the nation. Further, since the Met Council has taxation authority and the authority to usurp local jurisdictions, it’s insane to think that they shouldn’t be accountable to the people.

The editorial also says this:

We’ve also been skeptical about creating a “council of governments.” Its members would be politically beholden to the local constituencies that elected them, rather than the region as a whole. Instead, we favor instituting staggered terms for council members and employing a panel of local officials as a screening committee to recommend council candidates to the governor.

What’s so virtuous about a panel that’s accountable only to the governor? I don’t see anything worthwhile about that. Let’s further ask the question at the heart of this argument: why do these bureaucrats, plus the Star Tribune, fear the people? Governments are supposed to be of, by and for the people. This nation was started in part by the belief that there should be no taxation without representation. Who does the Met Council represent? The Governor?

That doesn’t sound like a governing body that governs with the consent of the people. That sounds like a dictatorial body.

The Met Council is filled with special interests. For instance, Jennifer Munt ‘represents’ District 3, “which includes the Hennepin County cities of Chanhassen, Deephaven, Eden Prairie, Excelsior, Greenwood, Long Lake, Minnetonka, Minnetonka Beach, Mound, Orono, Shorewood, Spring Park, Tonka Bay, Wayzata, and Woodland. Munt is the Public Affairs Director for AFSCME Council 5, where she leads marketing, communications and media relations.”

This isn’t about representing the people. It’s about representing the special interests:

Previously [Munt] was the Communications Director for the Hiawatha LRT project (2000-2005) and an Outreach Coordinator for the Metropolitan Council (1999-2002).

Munt hasn’t represented people in the past. She’s represented governments and special interests.

Here’s Jason Lewis’s statement on what his amendment actually does:

“Currently, and in contrast to federal law, all 17 members of the Met Council are appointed by the Governor of the State of Minnesota. MPOs nationwide are created with the intent to improve infrastructure planning and, especially, transit investments on behalf of constituencies across a given region. In 2012, Congress rightly determined that locally elected officials are best suited to represent those same groups. In our region, the failure of the Met Council to include locally elected officials as part of their governing board has undermined this key aspect of accountability to the people they represent.”

Background:

MAP-21 required that federally recognized MPOs that participate in transit improvement program planning, long-range capital plans, coordination of transit services, and that carry out other state activities, all of which rely on federal funding and grants, meet certain requirements. These requirements include a board makeup of locally elected officials, public transportation officials, and appropriate state officials.
The Metropolitan Council (Met Council) currently has a Transportation Advisory Board (TAB) that consists of local elected officials, but in August of 2015, the Federal Highway Administration and the Federal Transit Administration ruled that the TAB lacked any voting authority and therefore the Met Council did not meet the threshold of MPO compliance.

Unfortunately, the Obama administration used a separate clause in federal law to “grandfather” the Met Council into compliance.

Our amendment does not seek to change the operations or scope of the Met Council. It does not attempt to change the activities of the board. It simply requires that for a board to be in compliance they need to have locally elected official representation consistent with every other MPO in the country.

In other words, the Strib appears to be running interference for the Met Council. Rep. Lewis’s amendment doesn’t change the Met Council’s responsibilities. It simply requires the Met Council into compliance with existing federal law. That isn’t “tipping the scales” in one direction or another, as the Strib implies. It simply forces the Met Council to comply with existing federal law.

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Say what you want about Elizabeth Warren, aka Pocahontas. She’s nothing if not politically flexible. It wasn’t that long ago that Sen. Warren “trashed the politically vulnerable Montana Democrat for supporting a landmark bank deregulation bill.” This week, Elizabeth Warren “is coming to the rescue of Sen. Jon Tester in the face of escalating attacks by President Donald Trump.”

In her fundraising letter, Sen. Warren said “Jon and I don’t agree on everything — but I know that Jon makes every decision with the working people of Montana and all across this country in his mind. He’s a good and decent man, and right now he needs our help.”

Rather than calling her Pocahontas, I’d argue that it’s more appropriate to call her Pinocchio. What “good and decent man” throws a military veteran under the proverbial bus for purely partisan gain? That isn’t what I’d consider the actions of a good and decent man. Listen to what Sen. Tester said in this press availability:

Less than 30 seconds into the availability, when asked to confirm Sen. Tester’s statements, Sen. Tester said “I just can’t confirm it at this moment in time.” If that’s the case, Sen. Tester, why didn’t you just do your due diligence rather than leak this information to the press? I’m betting that Sen. Tester wouldn’t have followed this path had Adm. Jackson been appointed by President Obama. I’m betting that Sen. Tester would’ve quietly checked into the allegations rather than leaking it to the press. In fact, I’m betting that had Jackson a) been nominated by President Obama and b) had been guilty of the charges, Sen. Tester would’ve swept that information under the rug.

Later in the video, the MSNBC anchor and the MSNBC correspondent admit that they don’t know if the allegations were true or false. Since then, however, we’ve found out that the Secret Service has issued a statement that emphatically said Adm. Jackson wasn’t guilty of the accusations leveled against him.

Meanwhile, Sen. Warren has defended Sen. Tester, saying “Jon’s a man of integrity and courage, and I know he’s not going to back down or change his votes because of a television commercial or a tweet. But he needs our help to build the sort of grassroots campaign that can go town-to-town, person-to-person, to talk about what this election is really about.”

Finally, Sen. Tester defended himself, saying “It’s my duty to make sure Montana veterans get what they need and have earned, and I’ll never stop fighting for them as their senator.” What a crock. Sen. Tester has less integrity than the witch that ‘entertained’ the media at this weekend’s White House Correspondents’ Dinner.

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What wasn’t written in Kathy Kersten’s latest article on Minnesota education is that the principles of implicit bias and restorative justice are destroying what’s left of education in Minnesota.

First, the article talks about how “MDHR also announced the filing of ‘charges’ of ‘educational discrimination’ against the St. Louis Park School District and Walker-Hackensack-Akeley School District. Apparently, these two districts declined sufficiently to bend to the department’s will, though a St. Louis Park school official told MinnPost that the district is, in fact, ‘seeking to enter into an agreement’ with the department.”

What’s particularly frightening is the fact that school districts that don’t heed the MDHR’s threats are faced “with a choice: enter into an agreement with the department to come up with a plan to address [discipline] disparities, or face litigation.” In other words, do it our way or we’ll destroy you with expensive litigation. The DFL hasn’t explained how that isn’t oppressive. The DFL hasn’t explained why these threats of intimidation and financial ruin aren’t based on official complaints instead of statistical disparities.

For districts and charters that have chosen to enter into a collaborative agreement with the Department, all have submitted three-year plans that outline the specific strategies they’ll be implementing. These strategies include a broad range of things like professional development trainings to help educators address the “implicit bias that influences perceptions of student behavior” and ways to increase student and community engagement.

This is insane. How can you fight something that exists only in the minds of the most whacked-out liberals? Let’s see if you can spot the flawed thinking in the opening paragraph of this article:

Ten Minnesota school districts and charter schools have reached a pact with the state Department of Human Rights to fix racial disparities in student discipline.

I’m betting everyone reading that noticed the flawed thinking that deals with discipline disparities, not behavioral disparities. Next, notice Commissioner Lindsey’s statement:

“I’m encouraged. There was some good ideas that came out of the conversations with the school districts and charter schools. They are going to drive change and we will see positive results in Minnesota because of their efforts.”

Next, check out this sentence:

State leaders say the discipline disparities amount to human rights violations.

Commissioner Lindsey didn’t define what is acceptable or unacceptable behavior. Until that’s defined, his declarations are subjective. Next, check out this video on implicit bias:

How many people think that “for like 75% of white Americans, it’s hard to put black and good together”? I don’t buy that for a split-second. I know that’s a phony ‘statistic.’ This isn’t the way to achieve justice. FYI- the definition of justice is “the quality of being just; righteousness, equitableness, or moral rightness.” Righteousness isn’t situation-based. It’s defined by the Word of God, who is never-changing.

Just like other progressive social experiments, restorative justice and implicit bias will fail. The only question left is how much society will be harmed.

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Unlike the DFL governor, Republicans haven’t turned a blind eye towards the nursing home crisis. For 7 years, DFL Gov. Dayton hasn’t paid attention to the nursing home crisis. After the Strib published a multi-part series on nursing home abuse, in which some people literally died of neglect, Gov. Dayton appointed a task force to look into the abuse.

Before that panel was appointed, the Strib examined state records. One of the appalling pieces of information was that there were “25,226 allegations of neglect, physical abuse, unexplained serious injuries and thefts last year in state-licensed senior facilities” and that “97 percent were never investigated.” When I wrote this post, I noted something in State Sen. Karin Housley’s statement. In her statement, she said “Instead of taking responsibility for the shortcomings and negligence of his own state agencies, one of the main drivers of this issue, the governor placed the blame wholly on the care providers. Despite a well-documented culture of intimidation and neglect that prevented the governor’s Office of Health Facility Complaints (OHFC) from serving its function, the governor refuses to accept accountability for the failings of the executive branch.”

Despite the DFL owning this crisis, the House DFL campaign committee, tasked with getting DFL legislators elected, issued this propaganda:

The bill fixing this DFL crisis was chief authored by Sen. Housley. The DFL knows that it’s being run through the Senate first. (PS- the bill # is SF3437.) The bill will be passed in the Senate first, then sent to the House, where it will be passed, then sent to Gov. Dayton.

This BS fundraising appeal reveals the DFL’s (lack of) character. The DFL knows that their governor ignored the problem. The DFL knows that Republicans are cleaning up the DFL’s mess. Still, the DFL is pretending like it’s the Republicans’ fault if the DFL’s problems aren’t fixed. Fortunately, Republicans are in the habit of doing the right thing. They’re fixing the DFL’s problem.

This is entirely on Gov. Dayton:

When investigations did happen, often they were essentially botched, with evidence destroyed or tampered with, interviews not conducted, and sometimes police or prosecutors not contacted as required by state law. Sometimes investigations were done by public employees or nursing home employees not trained in criminal investigations.

The legislative branch has nothing to do with the actual investigations. That’s exclusively the executive branch’s responsibility. Period.

This highlights the fact that the Dayton administration, aka Minnesota’s executive branch the past 7+ years, was incompetent. The DFL’s investigations were botched, which placed additional seniors in harm’s way. Now the DFL is attempting to blame Republicans for the DFL’s incompetence!

Finally, it’s important to remember this November that the DFL was both dishonest and incompetent in dealing with this crisis. The DFL will campaign on creating a “Better Minnesota.” That’s BS. If the DFL thinks that this is a picture of “a Better Minnesota”, then it’s obvious that the DFL sees things through rose-colored glasses.

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Apparently, progressives aren’t as altruistic as they pretend while getting interviewed. Recently, the “Orange County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to scrap its plan to move hundreds of homeless people from alongside the Santa Ana River to temporary shelters in three cities.”

According to the article, “ahead of the meeting, a caravan of 22 chartered buses arrived at Santa Ana’s Hall of Administration carrying more than 1,200 Irvine residents who urged the Orange County Board of Supervisors to scrap the controversial plan to create emergency homeless shelters in their community and others.”

The activists must’ve prohibited altruistic people from boarding their buses. It was stunning to hear that the “meeting was packed with residents who oppose putting emergency shelters in their neighborhoods.” People like Angela Liu, of Irvine, who owns a legal services company, who said “I don’t know. They need to put them somewhere, maybe somewhere else in California. I really don’t know where they can go, but Irvine is beautiful and we don’t want to get destroyed.”

“Who cares?” added Abby Moore, a retiree from Laguna Niguel. “This is not our responsibility; we are not elected to handle this crisis. I just don’t want to be near the homeless.”

Meanwhile, the crisis keeps getting worse:

When Tucker interviewed Fabio, Democrats ridiculed both men. That’s why I’m expecting to get ridiculed, too. That’s fine. The homeless crisis in California isn’t getting better. It’s getting worse without an end in sight. Fabio explained why it isn’t getting better when he stated that “5,700 people paid 37% of California’s state income tax.” Further, Fabio stated that the movie industry has left California for all intents and purposes and the middle class is leaving the state thanks to Jerry Brown’s economic ‘leadership’.

Supervisor Lisa A. Bartlett apologized to the affected cities during the meeting. “There has been a lack of clear information and that has caused unnecessary panic,” Bartlett said. “Nothing was approved or built and no homeless were ever relocated to any of the cities.”

That’s what happens when the progressive checklist is followed to a T. California taxes the middle class while protecting criminal aliens. Jerry Brown came close to ruining California during his first time in office as governor. This time, he’s returned, along with supermajorities of Democrats, to finish the job he started when he was nicknamed Gov. Moonbeam and while he dated Linda Ronstadt.

More than anything, California needs another Reagan to save it from the Brown family. Back in 1966, Reagan defeated Pat Brown, Jerry’s father. Unfortunately, California’s insanity returned with a vengeance.

Joe Soucheray’s column is brilliant in that it highlights the fact that, to the public, the old system was working flawlessly.

In the second paragraph of his column, Soucheray wrote “So far, $93 million has been spent to upgrade the MNLARS software. I never had a problem getting my tabs or securing a new title. Did you? I mean, things were going along swimmingly and getting tabs and titles was just part of the contractual bargain we have with the state, like paying taxes or getting a fishing license.” I’m betting that 99% of people would agree with Mr. Soucheray’s statement.

Soucheray dropped the hammer in the next paragraph, saying “But then somebody decided we needed to upgrade the system. Maybe some software salesman in a plaid suit and orange shoes blew through town and they went for his pitch. Now there is a delay in getting tabs and titles. This falls under the rubric of fixing something that apparently wasn’t broken.” Ouch.

A longtime friend once told me when he helped me install my first PC that he preferred “trailing edge technology”. Bruce told me that he liked new technology after the inevitable bugs had gotten fixed. Apparently, though, with MNLARS, their problem is that they haven’t identified the bugs.

Then Soucheray drops the hammer:

Is this one of those deals where somebody’s brother-in-law is getting rich? Probably not. But I cannot think of a boondoggle of this scale that displays so clearly for us the difference in the mindsets between the public and private sectors. Imagine if your private employer told you to upgrade the computer software — you work in your company’s information technology department — that governs the loading of finished products from your loading docks into the waiting trucks.

“OK, boss, will do. What’s my budget?”
Sheepishly, you go back to the boss in a month and tell her you need more money.
“How much more?”
“Another $43 million might do it, but I need $10 million of that right now or I am going to lose this team of sharpshooters I brought on board.”
“You’re fired.”
“Yes, ma’am.”

Yes, incompetence happens in the private sector. That’s why companies go out of business. Either that or they quickly get new management that quickly rights the ship. What doesn’t happen in the private sector is letting the same failed management continue screwing things up without consequence.

Last Friday night, the DFL ‘ladies from La-La-Land’, aka Ellen Anderson and Ember Reichgott-Junge, insisted that Republicans would pay a political price this November if they didn’t appropriate the $10,000,000 immediately and without question. These ladies apparently aren’t bright enough to understand that the people that screwed things up, aka the Dayton administration, get blamed.

This sounds like a reasonable compromise:

Find the old software and reinstall it. That couldn’t possibly cost $93 million or require another $43 million of which $10 million is needed immediately.

I’m betting there are tons of frustrated customers out there that’d be fine with this solution.

Finally, the DFL, aka the Party of Big Government, has proven yet again that they’re incompetent. I wish that was a surprise.

As with most central planning projects, the people directly affected by the project aren’t taken into consideration. That’s certainly the case with Blaine’s rejected solar energy proposal. As with most projects, this was a power play built on the premises that central planners know best and that the uppity peasants should just listen.

That’s certainly the message that comes through loud and clear when it’s written “From the start, City Hall threw its clout behind the proposed field of solar panels with a capacity to power about 760 homes, giving the project an aura of inevitability. ‘It’s an alternative energy and limits the use of coal, which everyone wants,’ Blaine Mayor Tom Ryan said at a December public meeting. ‘It limits the carbon footprint.'”

Nowhere is it written that the neighborhood’s wishes were taken into consideration. Nowhere did the central planners think that renewable energy wasn’t a high priority of the neighborhood. That’s what happens within a bubble.

Homeowners determined there’d never been a big solar farm placed so close to a residential neighborhood anywhere in the country. When residents spot checked zoning regulations in other jurisdictions, they learned that none of the nine cities and three counties allowed big solar farms near residential neighborhoods like theirs.

Yet residents got the feeling city officials were more interested in rubber-stamping the project than in listening to their concerns over safety, aesthetics and property values. “Cities should put their citizens first because that’s who they are there to serve,” said Chris Hildrum, a Blaine resident who led the opposition. “They should not put energy companies, government entities or anything above the people they are there to serve. And when they do that, they create problems for everybody and everything.”

Mr. Hildrum’s statement is blasphemy to central planners. People are subjects unworthy of consideration with central planners. The people aren’t their concern. Here’s proof of that:

Days before city officials were set to amend the city code to allow solar farms in Blaine in late December, residents finally got through to City Councilor Julie Jeppson.

“I’m guessing this is not the last time we’re going to hear about it. So let’s prepare ourselves so when the right opportunities come up so we’re ready for them,” said Jeppson, a supporter of prudent solar development. “So we don’t have these huge miscommunications with neighbors and make them feel like we’re sneaking something under the radar with them. Have it out there, this is our policy, this is how we’re going to uphold it.”

Nothing in those statements indicates that she’s listened to the people.

The DFL hasn’t hidden their support for public employee unions like AFSCME, SEIU and MAPE. That means they’ve supported the things described in this article. What’s outlined in this article, though, seems more like highway robbery than representation.

For instance, “Labor unions in a handful of states have been able to take a portion of [Medicaid payments paid to PCAs] by organizing all the personal caregivers as one bargaining unit. Lawmakers in those states have allowed the practice by implementing policies that classify the caregivers as public employees – but only for the purpose of collective bargaining.”

The previous paragraph describes who these PCAs are, saying “Medicaid funds can be provided to personal caregivers who care for an elderly and disabled individual. The caregiver in most cases is related to their client. It’s a system that allows for personalized treatment and oftentimes it allows families to care for loved ones. But it’s also a system that has enriched unions.”

The unions have enriched themselves to the tune of “$200 million annually from Medicaid funds through personal caregivers.” These aren’t public employees. They’re relatives. The union collects their dues but the relatives don’t get the benefits that the unions bargain for. What part of that sounds justifiable?

Here’s what happened in Minnesota:

The union practice exists in states like California, Washington, Oregon, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Vermont, and Connecticut Minnesota lawmakers, for instance, allowed a state union to organize Personal Care Providers (PCA) as a single bargaining unit by passing a law dictating they are state employees simply because they collect Medicaid funds. Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton tried to do the same in 2011 through an executive order, but it failed in the courts.

The same bill that allowed unionization of in-home child care providers also authorized the unionization of family-based PCAs. Here’s part of the committee debate on that legislation:

Rep. Mahoney didn’t tell the truth. The union dues get taken out of money paid by government to in-home child care providers and PCAs. With PCAs, that money comes from Medicaid. These aren’t wages. They’re support payments paid to help families provide care for family members who otherwise might be housed in nursing homes or mental institutions. The state is actually saving money as a direct result of this program.

The family member is subsidized to care for family members because they’ve given up their jobs. That’s essentially a reimbursement paid in exchange for helping the state save money. That isn’t a wage.

“Medicaid will pay for homecare services for the elderly and disabled,” Nelsen told InsideSources. “The SEIU and AFSCME, back in the late 90s, when union membership was generally declining saw these workers, and this pool of Medicaid dollars, as a potential organizing opportunity.”

The U.S. Supreme Court addressed the issue to an extent during the 2014 case, Harris v. Quinn. The justices ruled that Illinois home care providers couldn’t be forced to pay dues because they weren’t technically state employees. Nelsen argues that unions and state leaders have found ways around those restrictions. “The states and unions have worked hand and glove to design a series of workarounds to the Harris v. Quinn decision, and to keep people paying dues whether they want to or not,” Nelsen said. “There are literally hundreds and thousands of these care providers around the country paying union dues to the SEIU and AFSCME against their will.”

In Minnesota, PCAs have petitioned the government to hold a decertification vote. If it’s held, the largest unionized bargaining unit will be decertified. The vote won’t be close.

When the unionization vote happened for in-home child care providers, it was rejected by a 1,014-392 margin. There’s no reason to think this vote won’t be similarly lopsided.