February 7, 2013
Last November Democrats won both Minnesota legislative houses and now they’re gleefully on board with Democrat Governor Mark Dayton for a taxing spree marketed as—you guessed it—tax relief.
Dayton reacted badly in January when Scott Walker noted that deficit-ridden Illinois and now Minnesota are increasing taxes, potentially driving economic growth to Wisconsin.
The telling point is in the last paragraph: “Dayton insisted that there is no correlation between tax levels and job growth or per capita income. “ Huh? Minnesota Public Radio using the verb “insisted?” Where we come from, “insisted” is journalistic code for “clung stubbornly to a ludicrous proposition.”
To see how ludicrous, you must persevere to the 24th paragraph of the St. Paul Pioneer Press story on Dayton’s tax plan.
It isn’t explained, but any taxpayer can figure out that cold winters don’t fully account for large numbers of Minnesotans establishing six-plus month residency in other states—say, Florida—that scrape by without the blessings of an income tax. While “insisting” taxes don’t affect behavior, Dayton and the Democrats are coming after these people.
So tax “relief” is going to cost Minnesota residents—including “snowbirds” about to be drafted back into Minnesota residency—about $2 billion in higher taxes.
The strategy of raising one tax to relieve another has helped make Wisconsin a high-tax state over the past half-century. What’s different here is Walker and a GOP Legislature trying to address the problem by reducing taxes, while west of the big river, Minnesota Democrats seize it as an excuse to increase them.