Archive for the ‘Taxes’ Category

Thomas Edsall’s article is a lengthy read but a worthwhile read. Deep into the article, Edsall quoted Ismail K. White and Chryl N. Laird, political scientists at Duke and Bowdoin, as saying “Political solidarity has been a crucial political asset of black Americans during a long struggle against racial injustice, and a few symbolic gestures or policy initiatives won’t win significant black support for Republicans.”

Do White and Laird think that criminal justice reform, opportunity scholarships, record minority unemployment and the IMPACT Act as “a few symbolic gestures or policy initiatives?” It isn’t surprising that White and Laird are “the authors of a new book ‘Steadfast Democrats: How Social Forces Shape Black Political Behavior.” I haven’t read the book but it sounds like White and Laird think that African-Americans are monolithic voters. I find that impossible to believe.

The definition of monolithic is “characterized by massiveness, total uniformity, rigidity, invulnerability, etc.; a monolithic society.” During the early primaries, liberal pundits speculated that Pete Buttigieg would have difficulty attracting African-American voters because he’s gay. Some African-Americans still voted for Buttigieg but African-Americans who were also evangelical Christians found Buttigieg’s holier-than-thou attitude off-putting.

White and Laird’s theory might turn out right. Still, betting on monoliths is foolish. Betting on monolithic structures when we’ve seen dynamic changes like this happen isn’t foolish, it’s stupid:

The definition of symbolic gesture is “an act that has no purpose or effect other than to show support, respect, etc.” Opportunity Zones aren’t symbolic. They’re substantive. According to Sen. Tim Scott, his legislation will provide “workforce training opportunities to better education to businesses being attracted into these opportunity zones.”

Those aren’t token gestures. Those are the types of things that make multi-generational, substantive improvements. Charles Payne is right in stating that Sen. Scott would be on the cover of Time Magazine if he was a Democrat who got this legislation enacted.

This article is pessimistic about the Republicans making gains with African-Americans. I think that too many African-American people’s lives have improved for the vote to essentially stay the same. This fall, we’ll see whose prediction is right.

PS- Anyone betting against Candace Owens and Tim Scott is foolish.

This article highlights the dissent within the Democratic Party. This isn’t a riff between 2 competing but similar wings of the party. It’s the type of article that rips the mask off the Democrats.

The setting of the first story is Allegheny County. The article talks about “committeewoman Heather Kass, who is running for the state House. Several years ago, Kass posted on social media criticism of Obamacare and the distribution of free Narcan for addicts—and insinuated support for President Donald Trump.”

The article then talks about the criticism Kass received:

Fortunately for Kass, she received 49 votes from the committee to secure its endorsement. Her opponent, liberal activist Jess Benham, received just 19. That’s when things got interesting. Darrin Kelly, an influential local labor leader, issued a statement blasting Kass’s previous statements. The party hierarchy followed that up by saying her social media history was disqualifying.

The fight soon unraveled in many different directions and tested a party that has comfortably come together and built a force that helped keep a Democrat as the chief executive officer for five consecutive terms and keep a majority of the county council seats. Now accusations of disloyalty and closet Trumpism are being tossed around by the liberal wing of the party. The factions that once worked together well enough to enjoy a healthy coalition are splintering.

Party Chairwoman Eileen Kelly held a press conference defending the endorsement process and encouraging forgiveness of Kass’s past social media posts. But in response, locally elected Democrats including two of the county’s congressmen, Representatives Mike Doyle and Conor Lamb, demanded her resignation.

What’s with that? I thought that Lamb was a centrist. Now he’s demanding the resignation of a party chairwoman who’s defended the endorsed candidate. That’s the opposite of being a centrist. This helps explain why the Democrats are falling apart:

Places such as Allegheny and Lancaster counties have made strides in elections with Democratic candidates who ran and won as centrists. Once they are elected, however, local party apparatuses start to demand more fidelity to liberalism, and the national party stresses it in messaging. But these are the kinds of places where any gains that were made since Trump was elected may start to fall apart.

This fits with my theory that moderate Democrats are Democrats while they’re running for office the first time. After they’ve served one term, they accumulate the worst thing a centrist can acquire — a voting record. That’s what I call Tarryl Clark Disease, named after the woman Michele Bachmann gave the nickname Taxin’ Tarryl Clark. Here’s how she became famous:

Conor Lamb isn’t a moderate. He’s just moderate compared with crazies like Maxine Waters, Adam Schiff and Jerry Nadler. That trio are looney toons. Despite the Democrats’ foolishness, Republicans must work hard. Republicans need to run like they’re 1 point behind with 3 weeks left in the race. If they maintain that attitude, they’ll win. If Republicans get complacent, they’ll lose. It’s that simple.

This article is built on the myth that there’s such a thing as a moderate Democrat. That critter hasn’t existed since President Obama’s inauguration. In 2007, Margaret Anderson-Kelliher, then the Speaker of the Minnesota House of Representatives, insisted that the DFL majority was a fiscally moderate caucus. Less than 2 months later, DFL Rep. Cy Thao told GOP Rep. Steve Gottwalt at a committee hearing that “When you guys win, you get to keep your money. When we win, we take your money.

That same year, when asked about all the tax hikes hidden in his transportation bill, DFL State Sen. Steve Murphy saidI’m not trying to fool anybody. There’s a lot of taxes in this bill.” The DFL of 2007 isn’t as nutty as today’s DFL.

Democrat superdelegates are planning how to steal the Democrats’ presidential nomination from Bernie Sanders. They aren’t hiding their plans. They’re simply telling reporters what they’re planning and why they’re motivated to steal the nomination from Sen. Sanders:

From California to the Carolinas, and North Dakota to Ohio, the party leaders say they worry that Mr. Sanders, a democratic socialist with passionate but limited support so far, will lose to President Trump, and drag down moderate House and Senate candidates in swing states with his left-wing agenda of “Medicare for all” and free four-year public college.

Earlier this week, Newt Gingrich announced that he’s writing a book about House Democrats that he calls “the radical 200.” Newt then said that “the entire Democratic Party is marching off a left-wing cliff. There’s a bill, for example, that would raise the FICA Tax, your Social Security tax, by 19% and they had 206 Democrats signed onto it.”

Social Security is the third rail of American politics. Anyone that thinks that these Democrats aren’t in huge trouble is kidding themselves. That’s political suicide. Ed Morrissey puts it quite succinctly in this post:

The superdelegates and other party officials are warning Pelosi and Schumer that vacillation will cost them their party, one way or the other. It’s not just the megadonors who see Sanders as a disaster on a grand enough scale that they’re willing to risk utter ruination to stop it. If the party leaders won’t lead, these same establishment figures will start looking for replacements who can.

When people claim that Sanders’ rise is not really that big of a deal and that he’s not as extreme as he’s being painted, they should read this NYT report carefully. Democrats aren’t making these kinds of plans over someone who’s just a skosh off their center. They know Sanders better than most, and they’re outright scared of putting him within voting range of the White House, enough to burn the party to the ground to stop it. That tells us all we need to know about Sanders.

Bill Clinton’s Democrat Party doesn’t exist anymore. Barack Obama’s Democratic Party exists by its fingertips. By the time the electors assemble in the state capitols, that Democratic Party will be almost as extinct as the Dodo Bird. The so-called moderates sound moderate until they get their election certificates. That’s when they turn into AOC supporters.

Democrats would be wise in the long-term if they jettisoned Bernie, AOC, et al. They wouldn’t have to sound totally nutty on the environment. Democrats wouldn’t have to treat farmers and other blue collar workers like dirt like AOC treats them like dirt. Best of all, Democrats wouldn’t have to live in fear of getting primaried.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that the Democrats’ presidential candidates are competing with each other in their race to Battleground State irrelevancy. Whether it’s Bernie Sanders, Amy Klobuchar, Joe Biden or Elizabeth Warren wanting to kill fossil fuels, or Mike Bloomberg insisting that farming is simple, city slicker Democrats apparently think that they can win the White House without winning midwestern battleground states.

While this won’t hurt Democrats with primary voters, it’ll sting the Democrats’ nominee in the general election, especially if Mike Bloomberg is the nominee. Picture the reaction Bloomberg would get across the Midwest when this video goes viral:


This is Bloomberg’s ‘Basket of Deplorables’ moment. That video can be deployed in multiple settings. First, it can be used to show he’s simply hostile to farmers. Next, it can be used to show that he really isn’t interested in uniting the country. Third, it can be used to ask how many other things he’ll have to apologize for. He’s already apologized for Stop-Question-and-Frisk.

The truth is that Mr. Bloomberg has said some rather heartless things. When he talked about throwing minorities up against the wall, he was either in his late 60s or early 70s. Shouldn’t he have known the ramifications of his statements? It isn’t like he was a reckless teenager when he said that.

Sen. Warren’s policies aren’t that appealing and she lies about virtually everything. At a time when people crave authenticity, she’s a phony. This weekend, Amy Klobuchar started flip-flopping while pandering for vote. How will that work? Joe Biden has been disparaging people while calling them disgusting names. He’s told them to vote for other candidates, too. Based on Iowa and New Hampshire, they’ve taken his instructions to heart.

Then there’s Bernie. He wants to eliminate private health care at a time when Democrats can’t even do simple math at their caucuses. Democrats still haven’t finished recanvassing the Iowa Caucuses results, which was 2 weeks ago. They want us to think that they’re proficient at figuring out complexities in the health care laws? I don’t think so.

Bernie will have difficulty defending President Trump’s attacks. Bernie wants to keep his money but he wants other millionaires to pay their fair share. Bernie’s policies will cripple this booming economy. How popular will that be with voters? Hint: The answer to that question rhymes with ‘it won’t.’

Doug Schoen’s op-ed is a valiant attempt to prevent a major political trainwreck. That isn’t likely since Schoen admits that studying the New Hampshire Primary “results reveals a Democratic Party at war with itself.” It isn’t a stretch to say that uniting the Democratic Party is difficult. Later in his op-ed, Schoen talks about Bernie as a socialist, which he is, and the moderates running. It’s insulting to hear Democrats talking about moderates as Democrat presidential candidates.

Schoen’s boss, Michael Bloomberg, is running as a moderate. That’s BS on steroids. With all the attention paid to Bloomberg’s racist statements this week, it isn’t surprising that few people know that Bloomberg wants to blow up the economy.

This article, published by Bloomberg’s newspaper, highlights the fact that a Bloomberg administration would feature a $5,000,000,000,000 tax hike. According to the article, “Michael Bloomberg said Saturday he would raise taxes on the wealthy, increase the corporate tax rate, and curb tax-free inheritances of large estates, elements of a tax plan that he says would raise $5 trillion over a decade.”

Then there’s this:

Bloomberg’s plan serves to show how he’d pay for an array of proposed new spending initiatives, which so far top $3 trillion. But his campaign cautioned that the tax plan could still change as the former New York mayor rolls out even more policy plans in the near future.

TRANSLATION: Bloomberg’s tax hike might go higher if he tries buying more votes.

Later, Schoen wrote this:

Moreover, Bloomberg is working to do exactly what the Democratic Party needs to do, working to unite African American voters, Hispanic voters, White voters, progressives, moderates and voters with varying degrees of education, so that the Democratic movement against Trump spans wider than the party’s base.

What Schoen doesn’t admit is that President Trump has cut into huge parts of the Democrats’ base. By signing the First Step Act and by highlighting school choice, opportunity scholarships and Opportunity Zones, President Trump is cutting into the Democrats’ base of minority voters. Democrats aren’t proactively reaching out to minority communities. Instead, Democrats are taking these communities for granted.

The dirty little secret is that President Trump is uniting minority communities through prosperity opportunities. Mike Bloomberg’s $5,000,000,000,000 tax hike would kill those prosperity opportunities. Further, this segment, on CNN of all places, isn’t uniting Democrats:

Bloomberg’s long-held position on stop-and-frisk won’t unite Democrats. His #MeToo problems won’t unite Democrats, either. Bloomberg’s $5,000,000,000,000 tax hike will unite independents and Republicans. At this point, the economy is uniting people around President Trump. This is hilarious:

To counteract Trump’s relative strengths, it is critical that the Democratic Party coalesces around a cohesive, inclusive, pro-growth message centered on jobs, the economy, health care and advancing equality of opportunity, while also highlighting President Trump’s own policy failures in these areas.

What a joke. Most of the Democrats’ presidential candidates are socialists or a step removed from being socialists. There’s no such thing as pro-growth socialist economic policies.

I almost feel sorry for Schoen. That’s because he’s caught betwixt and between defending Bloomberg’s anti-capitalist tax policies, Bloomberg’s government-knows-best nanny state policies and Bloomberg’s gun control policies.

This past week, a variety of articles on the 2020 presidential election have caught my attention. They’ve left me wondering whether (or how much) the dynamics of the 2020 race are changing. This article has me wondering whether President Trump will win a significantly higher percentage of the African-American vote. In 2016, he won 8% of the African-American vote nationwide. Imagine what would happen if President Trump got 15% of the African-American vote in Pennsylvania.

If Democrats don’t flip back Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin, they can’t get to 270 electoral votes. Technically, they can but it isn’t likely. According to Pete Hegseth’s reporting, First Immanuel Baptist Church Pastor Todd Johnson has seen a change in his congregation. According to Pastor Johnson, “the Opportunity Zone [provision] in the city of brotherly love — created by the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act — is working.”

Johnson then said “Some who were hardcore Democrats are not quite as hardcore now. And then there are some who are leaving the Democratic Party in Philadelphia. I’m hopeful that by the time the election rolls around in November, we will see more people leaving the Democratic Party and giving President Trump and the Republican Party a chance.”

President Trump’s Super Bowl ad featuring Alice Johnson was powerful:

When President Trump announced that Jenayah Davis was getting awarded an opportunity scholarship, everyone in the gallery applauded. All the Republicans seated on the House floor stood and applauded. Democrats stayed sitting. Democrats were overwhelmed with Trump hatred. Democrats didn’t applaud Jenayah. What isn’t shown in the video is President Trump’s exhortation to Congress to create 1,000,000 new opportunity scholarships this year.

Pelosi’s Democrats won’t do that. They can’t do that. That’s because they’re a wholly-owned subsidiary of the NEA and AFT. African-American voters are watching and noticing. They’re noticing what President Trump is doing to make their lives better. They’re noticing in increasing numbers that Democrats are all talk and no action.

Mischaracterizations are getting dismissed. By now, Prof. Borysenko’s article has become legendary. Still, it’s worth talking about the most important message from the article:

So, I headed over an hour and a half before the doors were scheduled to open—which was four hours before Trump was set to take the stage—and the line already stretched a mile away from the entrance to the arena. As I waited, I chatted with the folks around me. And contrary to all the fears expressed, they were so nice. I was not harassed or intimidated, and I was never in fear of my safety even for a moment. These were average, everyday people. They were veterans, schoolteachers, and small business owners who had come from all over the place for the thrill of attending this rally. They were upbeat and excited. In chatting, I even let it slip that I was a Democrat. The reaction: “Good for you! Welcome!”

Myths are getting shattered. It’s indisputable that President is far from perfect. Prof. Borysenko cut to the heart of the matter:

The reality is that many people I spoke to do disagree with Trump on things. They don’t always like his attitude. They wish he wouldn’t tweet so much. People who are in cults don’t question their leaders. The people I spoke with did, but the pros in their eyes far outweighed the cons. They don’t love him because they think he’s perfect. They love him despite his flaws, because they believe he has their back.

Bingo. I know that Democrats will dump a person in a heartbeat if they think it’s to their political advantage. President Trump hasn’t kept all of his promises but he’s worked tirelessly to keep them. President Trump’s policies have improved life for literally millions of Americans. He’s worked with the African-American community by including the Opportunity Zone provision in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. He did that at the request of HUD Secretary Ben Carson and Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC).

Lives are getting improved. Minority communities are noticing. That’s why it’s looking like the dynamics of this race are changing. As the saying goes, good policies make for great politics.

Shortly after President Trump’s well-deserved victory celebration, media outlets started asking whether President Trump could work with Democrats the rest of the year. The short answer is no. The extended version is ‘Are you out of your flipping mind?’

This isn’t a difficult question to respond to. Since Pelosi (I’m not using the title of Speaker because she didn’t use the traditional greeting for the president at the SOTU Tuesday night.) retook the Speaker’s gavel, House Democrats have a single legislative accomplishment. Right after illegitimately impeaching President Trump on Dec. 18, 2019, the House ratified the USMCA trade agreement that President Trump and Ambassador Lighthizer negotiated.

A more thorough review of the Democrats’ legislative accomplishments over the past decade doesn’t inspire confidence. In January, 2014, Barack Obama made this statement (threat?):

The solitary legislative accomplishment on the Democrats’ side since 2010 is Obamacare. That happened in March, 2010. Considering the Democrats’ thin history of legislative accomplishments, why would people think that Democrats are interested in legislative accomplishments? In 2014, Democrats lost the majority in the US Senate by losing 9 net Senate seats. Republicans picked up seats in Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Louisiana, Montana, North Carolina, South Dakota and West Virginia. That year, the incumbents that lost (Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Louisiana and North Carolina) lost because their opponents ran ads saying that Sen. fill-in-the-blank voted with Harry Reid 97% of the time.

The Senate Democrats’ only accomplishment this year is lending support in ratifying the USMCA trade agreement.

In the past decade, Democrats’ accomplishments are passing Obamacare and ratifying the USMCA trade agreement. Let’s not forget that every Democrat in the House and Senate voted against the Trump-GOP tax cuts. Democrats also voted against removing most of the regulations hindering the energy industry. Those regulations were removed when the House and Senate used the Congressional Review Act to eliminate those regulations.

The people shouldn’t count on Democrats to pass legislation that fixes problems or improves people’s lives. That isn’t their identity.

By comparison, when people had unified government with President Trump in the White House and Republican majorities in the House and Senate, things got done that made our nation safer, more prosperous and made us energy independent. Middle class families are feeling the improvements. Small business start-ups are lifting people from the middle class into creating wealth. Income inequality is shrinking, too.

People need to ask themselves if they’d prefer continuing this path of prosperity or whether they’d rather elect a Democrat who wants to kill this recovery. People also need to ask themselves if they’re willing to guns to the Democrats’ knife fights. Democrats just showed how vicious they are. Think of how vindictive Pelosi is. Then think of how dishonest Schiff is. Finally, think of how air-headed AOC is. That’s the ‘leadership’ team in the House under the Democrats.

Aric Putnam’s LTE in the St. Cloud Times is totally unimpressive as a political document. I’d say it’s worthless but I don’t want to be divisive. In Putnam’s LTE, we’re told that we “all see great local business leaders who know that you can build business and community at the same time” and that we “see people of great faith driven by moral example and desire for right.” Next, we’re told that we “see people who work hard and believe that their efforts can make tomorrow better than yesterday.”

What a bunch of BS. Despite the strong urge not to subject myself to pain, I visited Putnam’s campaign website to find out what his vision is. Here’s what I found:

We need to develop a business climate that builds on our strengths. We need jobs that supply a paycheck, but we also need jobs that allow people to improve their standard of living, jobs that create hope for promotion and social mobility. Quality of life is as important as quantity of profit. We can’t have one without the other. To accomplish this, we must build and maintain good roads, bridges, and transit to help grow jobs and a sense of community, incentivize entrepreneurship, and provide broadband to all of us. We need jobs that grow the middle class and allow our children to find opportunity here.

That isn’t the vision of a capitalist. That’s the vision of a crony capitalist. First and foremost, we need politicians who want to make Minnesota’s tax system competitive again. We need a regulatory system that doesn’t give special interests the opportunity to fight job creators in the courts for 10-15 years. Will Aric fight the environmentalist wing of the DFL? I wouldn’t hold my breath on that.

Aric promises to clean up corruption, too:

When I am in office, I won’t do that. I will work to pass legislation that increases transparency in government. I will advocate to eliminate some of the perks legislators get. I will work for more accountability in campaign finances so that we know who is paying for all those mailers, and I will lower campaign spending limits so legislators can work on creating good policy instead of raising money.

That’s a different way of saying that Aric is pro-censorship. That’s cookie-cutter DFL gibberish. Which perks that legislators get would Putnam eliminate?

Hold Government Accountable
Elected officials should be public servants. They need to be reliable and accessible to all their constituents. But public service isn’t passive; it is active. An elected official should be a leader, should reach out to the community, and have a vision and the skill and will to communicate it.

It’s not the job of government to solve all our problems — but a healthy democracy can foster vigorous dialogue and discussion. Elected officials must provide leadership and foster connections between elements of a community, stand up for each of us, and make all of us stronger.

When I am elected, I will hold regular town hall meetings and write columns for our local media. I can’t say you’ll always agree with me. But you’ll always know what I believe, where to find me, and how to get in touch. And you can trust me to always call you back. We deserve representatives who don’t take us for granted. We deserve a Senator who works hard to listen to and be heard by all of us.

What will Putnam do to push for reforming the Department of Human Services? Will Putnam ignore the corruption like other DFL politicians have ignored corruption? Will the DFL continue to pass the buck on opioid addiction program corruption? Thus far, there’s no indication that the DFL is interested in fixing those problems. Republicans have introduced legislation that will require accountability.

Gov. Walz hasn’t paid attention to the problem. Speaker Hortman didn’t take the crisis seriously. Sen. Bakk hasn’t taken this seriously, either. Why should I think that Mr. Putnam will fight the DFL leadership to fix this crisis?

This video is frightening to capitalists:

In the video, Putnam talks about planning the economy. Stop immediately! Lowering taxes, eliminating regulations and getting government out of the way as much as possible is the way to unleashing the economy’s animal spirits. Government meddling in the economy is as welcome as a back-seat driver constantly instructing the driver.

This SCTimes editorial about losing a congressional district avoids a topic most DFL politicians and DFL operatives would rather not talk about. In the second paragraph, it says “A slowing population growth rate in Minnesota and gangbusters growth in places including Texas, North Carolina and Florida signal a coming shift from eight House seats for Minnesota to seven.”

What it doesn’t say is why Minnesota is losing that district. DFL politicians, especially DFL governors, insist that Minnesota is doing fantastic. The truth is that Minnesota isn’t doing that great. We’re losing that district because we aren’t economically competitive. We have taxes that are far too high and regulations that are far too intrusive. Environmental activists have too many bites at the apple to kill prosperity, especially in rural Minnesota.

Today’s DFL is highly metro-centric and doesn’t care about blue collar jobs. Today’s DFL prefers white collar jobs in urban centers. The F in DFL stands for farmers. What’s disturbing is that today’s DFL have imposed costly regulations on farmers, making it more difficult for farmers to make a profit. The L in DFL stands for laborers. The DFL will fight to the death for public employee unions but they’ve ignored blue collar union jobs for 30+ years. That’s why Pete Stauber is favored to win re-election in the Eighth District.

When people think of Minnesota’s Eighth District, they immediately think of the Iron Range. That’s understandable but that’s just the most famous part of the Eighth. Huge portions of the Eighth are farmland (think Aitkin), woodlands ideally suited for logging (think Grand Rapids) and rural towns where the work ethic is outstanding (think Cambridge, Isanti and Park Rapids).

Those cities might as well be dead to the DFL. Anything beyond the inner ring of suburbs might as well be lunar landscape to the DFL.

Last year, I learned that 20+ states had a top tax rate that was lower than Minnesota’s lowest tax rate. In Pennsylvania, for instance, their top tax rate is 3.07%. Minnesota’s lowest tax bracket is taxed at 5.35%, with a top bracket taxed at 9.85%. That’s only because Republicans insisted on cutting taxes as part of their budget agreement. The DFL wanted to raise taxes. Is it any wonder why Minnesotans are leaving the state for low-tax states?

To compete with other states, you need a well-trained workforce, low taxes and fair regulations. Minnesota fails in all 3 categories. Why would a company start or expand here? Companies see what PolyMet has endured in terms of lawsuits, permitting and hostility and they cross Minnesota off the list.

The other thing that’s turning off Minnesotans is the number of scandals we’re dealing with. Whether it’s MNLARS, the multiple scandals within the Department of Human Services or things that government just doesn’t do well, people are paying a lot in taxes and getting very little in return. If Minnesota wants to lose another seat in 2030, they don’t need to change course. They just need to stay the course. If we want to become a prosperous state, then major changes need to take place.

Margaret Anderson-Kelliher is trying to con Minnesotans into a massive gas tax increase. Sorta. This is where we’ll get into the weeds a little. Normally, I wouldn’t waste my time but this isn’t normally.

Minnesota Department of Transportation Commissioner Margaret Anderson-Kelliher is pushing a combined gas-tax increase along with what she’s calling a “debt-service fee” that would raise fuel prices by up to 15 cents per gallon, according to interviews with local news outlets.

Anderson-Kelliher did back-to-back interviews with the Rochester Post-Bulletin and the Mankato Free Press in September to promote the idea. Minnesota’s DFL Party began “actively exploring” the debt-service fee in July, which would increase gas prices to help cover the costs of borrowing money for highway improvements.

Next comes the razzle-dazzle:

In her interview with the Rochester Post Bulletin, Anderson-Kelliher said the state “should start anew and look at ways we can build from there. There is a real need in this community to address not only the transportation movement of cars and transit, but people want to bike safely and they want to walk safely. And to be able to do that, you actually need more resources,” she said.

The Center of the American Experiment’s Tom Steward thinks this means Anderson-Kelliher plans to use “the increased bonding capacity as a backdoor way of building bike paths and diverting billions of tax dollars to green alternatives to the automobile.”

Gov. Walz tried pushing through a massive tax increase during the budget session. It failed miserably. IF Gov. Walz tries pushing that agenda again, he’ll have to work with an all-GOP legislature in 2021. The other possibility is watching DFL legislators abandon him in large numbers. If Speaker Hortman pushes this agenda in the House, it will be her only term as Speaker. Tax increases aren’t popular. Gas tax increases are the least popular of the tax increases. Having the DFL push a gas tax increase right before an election is a gift — to Republicans. Having the DFL push a gas tax increase and ‘debt service fee’ increase to pay for bike paths and walking trails in an election year is political suicide for the DFL.

This won’t happen unless we have another Override Six fiasco. If something like that happens, which I don’t think will happen, those senators will be primaried and their political careers will be over.