Gov. Dayton has built a reputation of throwing temper tantrums. Now he’s building a reputation of throwing hand grenades while he’s throwing his temper tantrums. Yesterday, he threw another hand grenade:

Gov. Mark Dayton rolled a political hand grenade into Republican leaders’ piecemeal budget solution Monday, informing them he will reject all bills until they present a complete, balanced financial package.

Dayton issued a sternly worded, three-page letter hours before the GOP-controlled House passed a tax bill that would gut aid for the state’s largest cities, a signature Republican initiative designed to kick off a week’s worth of votes on budget bills that cut most state agencies.

GOP reaction to Gov. Dayton’s ultimatum wasn’t positive:

The letter “was probably a step backward,” House Majority Leader Matt Dean said Monday.

Deputy Senate Majority Leader Geoff Michel, R-Edina, took more pointed aim at the governor. “Leadership is not writing letters,” he said. “Leadership is not drawing lines in the sand.”

Gov. Temper Tantrum can veto the GOP’s budget bills if he likes. It’s important that he understands that his veto, and the DFL legislature’s sustaining them, will come with a political price in 2012. I’d love watching the DFL campaign on being the party that wanted to raise taxes and spending more. That didn’t work in 2010. It’ll fail in 2012, too.

Dayton also wants the GOP to do what other Legislatures have done, abide by Revenue Department estimates for what each proposal will save or cost the state. He said he won’t negotiate with them until they do so. Republicans last week revealed that they were basing their estimates on numbers from private business and other states.

If Gov. Temper Tantrum wants to stomp his feet or hold his breath till his face turns blue, that’s his right. The only thing that John Q. Public cares about is whether MMB says that the GOP’s budget balances. When John Q. Public finds out that it balances without raising taxes, Main Street Minnesota will side with the GOP. PERIOD.

If Gov. Dayton refuses to negotiate with the MNGOP after they’ve balanced the budget, Main Street Minnesota will demand Gov. Dayton provide a better explanation than what he’s offered thus far.

It’s important that we’re clear about something else, namely that the DFL, whether we’re talking about Gov. Dayton or the DFL legislature of the past 4 years, doesn’t have credibility on putting balanced budgets together.

Then-Candidate Dayton put forth a supposedly detailed balanced budget proposal early in the election cycle. The cornerstone of the budget was a $4,000,000,000 tax-the-rich increase.

Then it met reality.

MMB said that his tax-the-rich scheme would only generate $1,900,000,000, meaning his supposedly detailed budget still had a $2,000,000,000 deficit.

Dayton 2.0 didn’t turn out substantially better, finishing with a $1,000,000,000 deficit.

Dayton 3.0 dropped his promise of raising education funding every year without exceptions, without excuses and added more taxes. Finally, it balanced.

Then there’s the 2009 budget session. That’s the year when DFL legislative leadership didn’t offer their own budget. That’s the year they tried raising taxes only to see its members reject the DFL’s tax increase proposals. That’s the year when the only balanced budget proposal was their final proposal. That’s the budget that passed the House with 9 minutes left in the session. Even then, that ‘budget’ had a paltry $36,000 estimated surplus at the end of the 2010-11 biennium.

That surplus disappeared before Labor Day, 2009.

Throughout all their machinations, the DFL hasn’t put together a reform-minded, pro-growth budget in ages. That they’re afforded any credibility on budgetary issues is astonishing.

They’ve been abetted by their media allies who’ve covered ‘reported’ about the DFL’s witnesses rather than seriously questioning the DFL’s policies.

Does anyone with real gravitas think that Gov. Dayton, Rep. Thissen and the DFL will produce a real balanced budget that appeals to Main Street Minnesotans? I’m betting against it.

Today’s DFL is expert at appealing to their special interest puppeteers. They’re substantially less than expert at putting together a reform-minded, pro-growth budget that leads Minnesota into the state’s next generation of sustained prosperity.

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4 Responses to “Another Gov. Dayton Temper Tantrum?”

  • John Shannon says:

    Keep dreaming… This little hiccup will be nothing but a bad memory come 2012.

  • eric z says:

    Good governing by a good governor.

    After eight years in the wasteland, it is refreshing.

  • Gary Gross says:

    If he’s such a good governor, why won’t even a single DFL legislator sponsor his budget or his bonding bill? The reality is that Gov. Dayton is a GINO– Governor In Name Only. He’s utterly clueless. He’s advocating for a 4.5% cut in long-term reimbursement rates. He’s nominated a militant environmentalist whose previous employment was working for MCEA, whose mission was to kill great-paying middle class jobs in the name of ‘saving the environment’ one job at a time.

    Yeah, that’s great governance. Great if you define it as destructive & counterproductive.

  • Gary Gross says:

    Losing control of the House & Senate when the DFL had a veto-proof majority in the Senate & a supermajority in the House is a hiccup? Lord Oberstar losing in the 8th is a hiccup? Tarryl’s trouncing in the 6th is part of the hiccup?

    Dayton is governor for 1 reason. Actually, about 20,000,000 reasons. That’s the money his ex-wife & the trade unions shoveled into ABM’s smear campaign against Tom Emmer. They told lie after lie after lie. Didn’t hesitate in doing it, either. Come 2014, they’ll get their comeuppance. Then we’ll see how much of a hiccup this is.

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