How Democrats have not run Minnesota into the ground

This profile of Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton of Minnesota highlights how the passage of a number of legislative initiatives put forth by Democrats in that state have led to more positive results than the Republican policies enacted here in Wisconsin.

Over the past several years, Minnesota has become a testing ground for a litany of policies Democrats hope to enact nationally: legalizing same-sex marriage, making it easier to vote, boosting primary education spending, instituting all-day kindergarten, expanding unionization, freezing college tuition, increasing the minimum wage, and passing new laws requiring equal pay for women. To pay for it all, Dayton pushed a sharp increase on taxes for the top 2 percent—one of the largest hikes in state history. Republicans went berserk, warning that businesses would flee the state and take jobs with them.

The disaster Dayton’s GOP rivals predicted never happened. Two years after the tax hike, Minnesota’s economy is booming. The state added 172,000 jobs during Dayton’s first four years in office. Its 3.6 percent unemployment rate is among the lowest in the country (Wisconsin’s is 5.2 percent), and the Twin Cities have the lowest unemployment rate of any major metropolitan area. Under Dayton, Minnesota has consistently been in the top tier of states for GDP growth. Median incomes are $8,000 higher than the national average. In 2014, Minnesota led the nation in economic confidence, according to Gallup.

Minnesota has even pulled ahead of Walker’s Wisconsin, leapfrogging its neighbor to the east on measure after measure. “In a whole number of ways, we’re very, very similar,” Bakk, the DFL Senate leader, says of the two states. “But politically, we have taken just totally different paths in the road.”


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20 thoughts on “How Democrats have not run Minnesota into the ground

  1. There was a time not too long ago that the democrats held a majority in both legislatures and also held the governorship… How is it that during that time Wisconsin wasn’t seeing the “Amazing” growth that MN is seeing… Funny how Doyle and the democrats at that time gave us raids of the transportation funds, of the medical compensation funds. Some of the biggest cuts to education and yet none of the benefits that MN has received. Are democratic politicians in MN just that much better than ours? Weird.

    1. Well thanks for joining the discussion amongst the socialist peasants here if you are the esteemed and learned, John Harper Executive Director, Educational Services at Madison Metropolitan School District. Kindly let us know if this is not who you are, thank you.

      Very few people here are arguing that the DPW, along with their DNC corporate masters and national “Democratic,” leadership have not been at least part of the problem with a lack-luster economic performance in this state.

      Weirder still though, IMHO, are some peoples’ short term memories that tend to forget that Governor Doyle was successfully dealing with and bringing us out of the national economic disaster of President George W Bush’s administration in 2008 as we entered the 2010 election cycle. Extraordinary fiscal times, yes?

      Governor Walker and the Republican majority legislature promptly reversed the recovery started under Doyle. Promises, promises since then. Financial rewards, $2.2B, for the “job creators,” for failing to do so (create jobs that is), delivered on the backs of those intimidating poor, or homeless, or students, or teachers, or seniors, that Walker has blamed as being the cause of his lack of fiscal progress.

      Agreed, weird, but you’ve presented an absolutely false question. The Democratic politicians have not been running things since January 2011. You could even refer to unofficial Walker policy announced in 2010 before being sworn in, to reject jobs and WI’s future transportation connectivity to a region, with refusal of the Federal train money. So the proper look at this is that Walker and his “team,” are simply that much worse at furthering economic success for the whole state, because they don’t want to do so.

      1. Republicans love to blame Doyle for the national economic crash. It comes up over and over again, with them. Keep in mind, I didn’t think Doyle was exactly a great governor, and actually didn’t vote for him either time I had the chance to.

    2. Obviously you are the newest kid on the block. If anything many of the commenters on this blog exhibit a fair amount of disdain for the Democratic Party of Wisconsin and have no problem criticizing Democratic electeds whenever and where ever they deserve it.

      That being said, to maintain an apples to apples comparison, looking at the economic results in Governor Walker’s Wisconsin to those in Governor Dayton’s Minnesota is the fairer way to go. Going back to the harsh economic environment of the Bush/Doyle era shouldn’t be on the map at this point.

  2. You guys do realize that the seismic shift in the politics of Wisconsinites didn’t go republican because the Democrats in power were just killing it with amazing ideas right? You all here act like the Democratic lawmakers in this state just were doing a wiz-bang super job and the voters threw them out in spite of it… If the Koch brothers could just throw money at any state and “flip” it from a majority Dem to a majority Repub why hasn’t it worked in other areas…

    1. Wow, a second idiotic intellectual premise based on partial explanation of the circumstances. (Guessing immediately this is not the person referred to by myself previously, think, nemo, rsteve, denis, go right down the list for similarities in partisan hackery)

      We read the typical sexist greeting and categorization of, “you guys,” then the pathetic generality meme of, “you all here act like,” and the total disregard of any other political influences possibly going on at the time, late 2010. Next simply ignore anything like media bias for right-wing ideas and tea-party loud-mouths to distract an economically depressed populace and we get in two comments here, under a new name, the same bullshit we have come to recognize not measuring up to having any intellectual or political credibility.

  3. Hey Potty mouth!

    That was a lot of big words.

    I’m impressed by your ability to ignore the fact that it was the poor leadership of democrats that led to there ouster here in wisconsin. Please explain how Minnesota democrats didn’t meet the same fate due to the political influences possibly going on late in 2010. And how the multiple election cycles since that time has only increased the republicans grip on the state.

    1. Listen Mr Faux hurt feelings, Reactionary,

      I already gave you a new fact that you attempted to throw back as an argument with me, which you hadn’t even considered introducing previously, about the larger conglomeration of financial handicaps that Doyle was successfully dealing with until 2011, to help the state’s economy recover. Now you want me or someone here to continue with your enlightenment on state politics. Have you figured out how to wipe your own ass yet?

      When is it the duty of someone here to dissuade you of your preconceived and erroneous beliefs. Seriously? You found the internet and how to log on here, go type in an internet search question for your answers, but that’s not why you are here, is it? I have a huge snowball to keep rolling up the hill only to have it roll back down. I am getting some needed and beneficial physical exercise doing that at least.

      Just come out and tell us your ridiculous political theories so we can all have a good laugh.

      1. “Fact”


        I guess you are right. The reasons the democrats in Wisconsin saw their overwhelming majority become an overwhelming minority has nothing to do with the poor job they did running things.

        I got it.

        You may win the battle of word smithing, but you can’t change the fact that the seems in power stunk up the place.

        Good for Minnesota. I’m glad their elected leaders are making decisions that have worked. I’m sure the voters will reward them by allowing then to continue to serve.

        1. Also “Fact” typing on a phone leads to ridiculous typos!

          Oh well, at least I don’t live in denial

        2. “I guess you are right. The reasons the democrats in Wisconsin saw their overwhelming majority become an overwhelming minority has nothing to do with the poor job they did running things.”

          In the very first sentence I wrote, after asking you to clarify your identity with the name you apparently heisted, I made your, “brilliant,” final argument quoted and in bold above, for you. So even your attempted sarcasm here is a less than a yawning FAIL and more pointless drivel. Ed also reiterated that Democrats do plenty of self-examination, well before you added these bar time drunk posts, a recognizable signature posting time frame of a persistent troll that has not appeared at BB recently.

          Do everyone here a big favor, please. Read all the comments, attempt to learn how to comprehend the comments, and find a device that you can actually type correctly with. Makes the whole comment process easier for everyone.

          It is not hard to understand that making a sensible argument or a cogent statement is a, “battle,” for you. I’m sure readers here extend their deepest sympathies and might join me in urging you to practice somewhere else.

  4. I appreciate your point of view nonquixote. What I don’t appreciate is your constant attempts to make anyone that doesn’t share your point of view seem like an idiot, a sexist or a drunk. It is also funny that a person that isn’t willing to share his/her name on his/her posts would immediately declare that my given name is “heisted”.

    Clearly, over the last four years, the people of wisconsin have had an opportunity to experience the policies and leadership of the many members of the legislature and of the governor. With that knowledge in mind the MAJORITY of wisconsinites that VOTE continue to place their trust in the people that were re-elected (which happens to be overwhelmingly conservative in nature).

    XOXO nonquixote!

    1. Not just anyone. He’s only that way to wingers. Yes, yes, Wisconsinites vote like they are collectively suffering from Stockholm Syndrome. Now tell us how Wisconsin GOP policy is somehow producing stronger results than Minnesota. Be specific and include sources. If your guy is worth defending, then let’s see a proper defense for once.

      1. Hello EmmaR,

        I was going to leave it at sympathy and flowers above, but thanks for chiming in.

        @2:05pm missed for about the fourth time that I started out by agreeing with him that left leaning folks here do criticize and blame ourselves frequently, so he has now apparently changed his mind and doesn’t agree with his own previous key point anymore when he says I attempt to make people who disagree with me look ridiculous. Proves that I don’t really need to do anything to prompt feelings like that from some commenters. ;^)

        In his latest and hopefully last grand position (“Clearly over the last four years…”) the screechy Harper (perfect name) is finally admitting that Republicons are responsible for the dismal Wisconsin fiscal situation today. Despite controlling state government and having the trust of a minority of voters who won the elections, he’s finally claiming his political faction is entirely responsible for the horrendous economic throes we are in. (Caveat: I don’t think he realizes what he’s claiming, “credit,” for)

        Be well.

        1. I guess it is a small victory, but… New data ranks Minnesota last in Midwest in private sector job creation…

          Quoting the Minnesota star Tribune…

          The Bureau of Labor Statistics has released its most recent Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages, the higher-quality but time-delayed job statistics that go deep into the state and county level.
          The numbers, now available through the first quarter of 2014, paint a less promising picture of job growth in Minnesota last year than we’ve been seeing in the monthly job numbers.
          According to the new data, which everyone agrees is more reliable than the monthly numbers, Minnesota ranked 41st in the nation in private sector job growth from March 2013 to March 2014, with a growth rate of 0.8 percent.
          That ranks last in the Midwest. Behind Michigan, behind Iowa, behind Illinois, and, unfortunately, behind Wisconsin.

          So while MN is (in your mind) clearly the greatest state ever for all things economic. This small tidbit of data must not fit into your talking points.

          And of course there is this juicy bit that I’m sure you will all enjoy…

          Quoting from MPRNEWS FEB 19, 2015

          “For the third year in a row, Minnesota lags the rest of the country in on-time graduation for students of color.

          Fewer than 60 percent of the state’s black and Hispanic students graduate in four years, according to an MPR News analysis of the most recent federal data on state graduation rates, from the 2012-13 school year. The rate for the state’s Native American students is the second worst in the nation at 49 percent.

          Minnesota has the worst or second-worst graduation rates among reporting states in all four non-white student categories. No other state is in the bottom five in all four groups, and only Oregon comes close with three races in the bottom five.”

          All that prosperity that is happening in MN must be going to the White Folk. But I guess people of color to make a little more in minimum wage. (IF places higher dropouts.)

          1. You’re quoting a report that’s 6 months old and has been updated numerous times since the polar vortex of 2014 ended to have Minnesota back above Wisconsin for job growth for the last 12 months (and it is).

            BEAT IT, TROLL.

            1. “Beat it troll”

              Very nice!

              Emma, if you are black in MN. What are your prospects for future success. Matter of fact, if you are any color other than white, you are pretty much standing in line for the free phone and hot meal. Maybe february 19 isn’t New enough information for you “non gender specific” people.

              1. Lose on the points of the original post and change the topic or just lie about the premise being discussed, right harpie?

                Nobody here claimed MN was the “greatest state in all things economic.” You made that up. A lie and distortion often reverted to by losers.

                A February 19 publishing date is still refers to studies from 2 years ago, the last time data was available and the original post above MADE NO CLAIMS about a minority segment of the the overall population. Nice you are so concerned about Blacks in MN. When can we expect your diary submission story about increasing funding for job training and to public schools in Milwaukee? You changed the topic to minority specifics, we’ll expect consistency about your minority concerns from here on out.

                Clue, “race and gender,” are not the same thing. Might want to quit drunk posting as I suggested before. Denial is not a river in Africa.

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