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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Shane Mekeland (R)

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Legislative report

Friday, May 17, 2019

Dear Neighbor,

The Legislature is just three days from adjournment on Monday but a budget agreement still is not in place because House Democrats and the governor won’t give up on their proposal to raise taxes by $12 billion at a time the state has a surplus of $1 billion and growing.

Without raising a single penny in taxes, simple economic growth will provide the state with 7% more to spend. Apparently that is not enough for Democrats. Raising taxes of any kind during a surplus is a bad idea, but this is extreme.

Democrats are going to have to abandon their tax increases before a budget agreement can be reached. If Democrats remain unwilling to do so, I can’t wait to hear the excuses for why a 7% increase in state revenue was not enough for them and they needed to force a special session and/or bring us to the brink of a government shutdown to take more from the taxpayers.

I will continue working to hold off the Democrats unnecessary tax increases, including raising the gas tax by 20 cents per gallon and extending a tax on health care. While Democrats say they want to extend the health care tax to fund Medical Assistance, only 6 percent of that tax money goes to MA (the feds cover the rest). What really is happening beneath the surface is extending the health care tax could provide Democrats with a ramp into socialized health care by providing a funding mechanism for ONECare MN. Government-run health care is about the last thing I want to see in our state, or in nation.

From a more positive perspective, it was good to see a conference committee voted down two very controversial gun bills this week (H.F. 8, H.F. 9). That should put them to rest for this session. I’ll keep my eye on this and let you know if the Democrats pull any stunts and try to revive them.

Look for more news as things shake out in St. Paul; we anticipate working through the weekend. You also can follow me on Facebook to more updates, including quick video segments. I'm at

Until next time, thanks to everyone who has sent messages of support throughout the session.



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