Archive Hosted by the AFL-CIO

Tuesday Talk: What’s the worst of a shutdown?

July 05, 2011 By Joe Sheeran, Communications Director

A rearranged 4th of July outing is the least of the shutdown’s casualties. At least 22,000 people are temporarily out of a job, private commerce is slowing, certain vital health and human services are on hold and the list goes on. These are clear examples of how conservatives’ refusal to compromise on a fair and balanced budget solution hurts Minnesota prosperity now and in the long term.

What do you think is the worst part of the shutdown?    

Thanks for participating! Commenting on this conversation is now closed.


  • stephan hoglund says:

    July 5, 2011 at 8:17 am

    I think the sad thing is that many families that rely on a affordable place to camp and hang out in our State parks were denied that experience due to the childish behavior of Wealthy Republican interests!

  • herb davis,jr. says:

    July 5, 2011 at 8:23 am

    The worst thing;  The extent to which the greedy will go when empowered by the votes of the theocrats…both the greedy and the privitizing religious right have demonstrated their power and they win when they can shut things down, they not only starve the beast, they take it out of action for a brief time.

  • Mike Downing says:

    July 5, 2011 at 8:26 am

    Is the fact that it was beautifully warm & sunny for the 1st three days after Gov Dayton’s shutdown a worst thing? grin

  • Mark says:

    July 5, 2011 at 8:30 am

    In the early stages, we are seening minor troubles from museum closures and campgrounds closed being brought up by cncerned citizens.  However, as time goes on, it will become apperant that those individuals who require health care needs and other more life pressing services will move to the forfront (I hope) of peoples thinking.

    I do hope that the Governor and Legislators will work together in a pragmatic, progressive approach to reach a fair resolution.

    I do hope that this is not being utilized by the National Republican party leaders to use as a “Beta Test” for a national shutdown based on the Federal Debt ceiling issue.

  • David Beimers says:

    July 5, 2011 at 8:32 am

    Personally, the worst part is the loss of family income followed closely by the unpredictability of the length of the shutdown. We’ve been saving for a family trip in early August, but that might be sacrificed to the uncompromising GOP greed.

  • Judith Daniel says:

    July 5, 2011 at 8:34 am

    The worst part of this for me,personally, is a sense of deep shame that we, the people of Minnesota elected legislators who have no compassion for people. We are being represented by a new batch of men and women who would rather represent 7,000 rich people than protect our children’s schools, healthcare, our economy, our parks, our infrastructure.

    We are being represented by men and women so deeply ignorant that having a few rich guy friends is more important to them than doing the job they were elected to do….defend our state and its people and protect the young, weak and elderly amongst us. So deeply ignorant that they believe more children, more people, more unemployed, and two wars can be sustained with no increase in revenue.

    I haven’t lost my job or been hurt financially, but I am fast losing my belief that as a state (and as a nation), we have the moral and intellectual fortitude to endure and flourish.

    I know I speak for many people in this state when I thank Governor Dayton ( a rich guy friend it would be worth having) for standing up to enormous pressure and speaking for most of US, which includes many rich people of integrity.

  • MALCOLM (NLN) says:

    July 5, 2011 at 8:50 am



    MALCOLM <>((:-)

  • Deborah says:

    July 5, 2011 at 9:21 am

    I’ve been emailing the GOPers and have only received replies that blame the Governor for the shut down. They won’t take any responsibility. Here’s a sample from Sen.Dave Senjem:  The budget you reference is at $39M.  When the governor reduced it to $35.7M there was never an adjusted budget presented, to this day.  If you can find one I will apologize profusely.  If you can find one you will have done better than any of us at the Capitol. 

  • John Ackerman says:

    July 5, 2011 at 9:29 am

    Read today’s NY Times opinion by David Brooks.

    His opinion is true nationally, true state wise.

    Democrats have gone half way to compromise.

    Tea-Party will have to change from just protest group, to responsible party, or else catastrophe.  And wise voters will see their stupidity.

    The Republican leaders may see the obvious.

  • Rick says:

    July 5, 2011 at 9:29 am

      Judith Daniel expressed my opinion
      very well.

  • Tom Rauschenfels says:

    July 5, 2011 at 9:37 am

    Bravo! Judith Daniel. You said it perfectly.

  • Lance Peterson says:

    July 5, 2011 at 10:07 am

    Maybe with the shutdowns of government services, the Right Wingers and Republicans will see the folly of their actions.  People are denied basic health services plus the state parks and Canterbury Downs were shut down. Minnesota in addition to 22,000 state jobs lost badly needed revenue plus construction jobs were also hut down.

  • Michael Sturm says:

    July 5, 2011 at 10:11 am

    Republicans keep comparing the state budget to a family budget and they say you can’t just choose to make more money. Isn’t our state more like a business where we as the residents of the state are the customers and the State provides services like roads, parks, schools etc. So please find me a hardware store, or grocery store, that lowers their prices 9 years ago, and while products cost more & more every year, they refuse to raise prices on their goods or services.
    Maybe the voters gave both parties a mandate and the voters want cuts and controlled spending on inefficient programs, while raising taxes on those best equipped to sustain it and afford it. Thus, we would have compromise, and bring out State back into balance. Governor Dayton get this, why can’t any Republicans wrap their brains around this?!?

  • Kristine King says:

    July 5, 2011 at 10:12 am

    The WORST thing about the shutdown:

    #1 22,000 people are out of work because the Republicans are only for making the rich, richer and the poor, poorer!

  • KJC says:

    July 5, 2011 at 10:29 am

    Yes, I agree that Mr. Brooks has a column that is so “on point,” whether it’s the national political situation or our state situation. 
    This is particularly interesting as he make absolutely no bones about how he is a conservative columnist.  Period. 
    I hope everybody reads it, but if you don’t?  A quick summary would read:
    The Democrats have already made astounding concessions, giving the Republicans nearly everything they want, ALREADY.  And that if the Republicans don’t take the deal that’s on the table right now, that they aren’t fit to govern.
    Remember, this is from the NYTimes most consistently Conservative columnist.
    If you need a link, just ask…

  • Michael Sturm says:

    July 5, 2011 at 10:29 am

    Another one of the worst things is that shutting down the government doesn’t really hurt those on the top that the Republicans seem hell bent on protecting.  The one who feel this the most are those middle class earners who work for the state, or those who depend on valuable state services and are denied them because of the refusal to compromise.  Maybe if we had a country club, private security firm, 4-star restaurant, private jet shutdown, then we might get to the root of the problem instead of just dragging the poor & working class through the mud.  I fear the Republicans will wait this one out longer than Gov. Dayton, because he seems to care about the bottom 98% of us.

  • Rick says:

    July 5, 2011 at 10:34 am

    Worst part of the shutdown in my view, is the fact that our representatives are so polarized in ideologies they can’t come to any sort of agreement. Nobody gets everything they want in this scenario. People have become thoroughly disgusted with our representation and really need to become more actively involved in government.

  • Mike Downing says:

    July 5, 2011 at 11:12 am

    If the media wants proof that the DFL didn’t negotiate in good faith on the budget, here is abundant proof. In fact, the landscape is littered with proof if anyone’s interested.

    Friday afternoon, Derek Brigham announced via Twitter that he’d received in the mail a mailing criticizing Republicans for shutting the government down and for not compromising with Gov. Dayton.

    We need to point out the obvious. How could Derek get a mailing within hours after the shutdown started criticizing Republicans for negotiating in bad faith? Anyone aware of the print industry will know that this piece had to have been planned at least 2 weeks ago.

  • Marian Louwagie says:

    July 5, 2011 at 11:44 am

    I believe the worst part of the shut down is the fact that those who claimed to be the brightest, with incredible compromise skills and ability to listen and respond to the Minnesota people can’t do it!  I believe they should be asked to pick up the tab for all of the extra expenses that we have incurred thus far, and will incur in the future, since they are the group that are not able to carry through on their commitment to be leaders that represent Minnesota, are depriving folks of vacations in Minnesota parks, holding up construction projects etc.

  • Michelle Hawkins says:

    July 5, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    More for the greedy, less for the needy. That’s the republican mantra. Their hubris, their actions and statements, lack the Human of being.

    I don’t want to wait until 2012 elections, these legislators have broken their employment contract with the public they have failed to represent.
    It’s time to fire them.

    Initiate recalls.
    There are more working calss and low income voters than there are rich in Minnesota. One man(woman), one vote. Add them up and I bet the republicans would NoT survive a RECALL!

  • Seth says:

    July 5, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    I was most impressed to read that the Governor and one congressman have given up their government salary during the shutdown (even thought it won’t hurt them, it is a sign of good faith and understanding). Thousands of state employees will be out of a paycheck while the congressman are allowed to get their state salary. Its easy to allow the shutdown when your not the one loosing pay. Why don’t the congressman have their pay shut down along with the thousands of state employees? Oh, wait we need them to keep working, not go on vacation. We need them to vote us out of the shutdown. It’s ok for thousands to loose pay, but not your representative, he/she is their for you.

  • Cathy Finken says:

    July 5, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    I agree with Mr. Sturm. The folks who will be hurt the most are not the ones being protected by the majority party. What they forget is we are only as strong as our weakest link.

  • Mike Downing says:

    July 5, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    Marian, I agree with you; Governor Dayton’s family & extended family (the Rockefellers) can pay for Governor Dayton’s shutdown and his 22% increase in spending.

  • Bernie Bauhof says:

    July 5, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    This standoff is not about taxing those 2% of the folks in Minnesota that fellow Minnesotans, who, having bought into the demagoguery spewed out by the media, big unions,  and web sites like this one, attack the “evil rich” as the source of the problem, and the reason for the standoff between the Governor and the legislature. Continue to drive a wedge between people, it is good for politics. Every cause needs a demon. Let’s put a face on the demon. These successful people are your neighbors. They could be your doctor, or your dentist. They could be the owner of the small business that services your car, or the working couple down the street whose combined income has made them, by the governors definition, Rich. What gives him the right to define anybody into a category? He has no mandate. If it were not for a third candidate running for office, Tom Emmer would be Governor today. This standoff is not about tax increases, it is about holding the line on spending. Government spending cannot continue on its present path. Like it or not, that is what got this legislature elected into office and by all indications, they intend to hold spending. The worst thing about this shutdown is the fact that so many people, our neighbors,  will be greatly impacted by it, and all because government cannot come to the realization that if spending continues to increase year over year, we will be bankrupt. The legislature offered up a temporary spending bill to put people back to work while negotiations continue. It was rejected by the Governor. This budget cycle the mantra is “tax the rich”.  Who will they come for when the next budget cycle produces an even larger deficit and there are no more “rich” to tax?  Another new demon?

  • Mike Downing says:

    July 5, 2011 at 1:39 pm

    Well said Bernie. The truth hurts the uninformed.

    The state & federal demographics are very clear in that we must reduce the rate of growth of state & federal budgets. Tom Gillaspy, MN State Demographer, has told previous MN legislators as well as the current legislators that we have an unsustainable budget that continuing tax increases cannot solve.

  • cathy says:

    July 5, 2011 at 2:10 pm

    The republicans in the legislature have been given a mandate by Karl Rove and the national Republican committee. They are expected to hand over our state like Michigan, Wisconsin, Indiana, Ohio, etc. They can not and will not compromise. It is a national effort to change this country as we know it. They have to deliver. Get rid of unions, no taxes for corporations, reduce the elderly vote by passing “voter ID” so they can chop up Social Security and Medicare without repercussions. Republicans threw all this in, along with other national ideas, that they knew the Governor would not go along with. The only thing good about the shut down is that we are finding out what really went on. We are in this bind in the state and nationally because of tax cuts over the past 10 years without spending cuts. Now that we are in a big hole in our state and nationally, republicans only want one kind of fix…drastic spending cuts. Maybe they should address what caused the problem…tax cuts and loopholes.

  • Mike Downing says:

    July 5, 2011 at 3:19 pm

    cathy,  please explain how an INCREASE from $30 Billion to $34 Billion is a “drastic cut” in your mind?

  • cathy says:

    July 5, 2011 at 4:25 pm

    We hear different numbers all over the place. Everyone says theirs are the accurate ones. I do know that we had to replace the one-time stimulus money that was used in the budget last time, hence an “increase” to some folks. Funny how some people deliberately mis-lead others.

  • Christeen Stone says:

    July 5, 2011 at 5:19 pm

    I find what has now happened, just one small part of the millions wasted by the GOP in their no accomplishment session. Three weeks wasted on putting social amendments on the docket for next year when they should have been working on a passable budget. I admire Governor Dayton for his standing strong in showing compassion for those who would be the victims of the GOP Budget.
    To me the fact that so many very vulnerable people have had to be made victim of the GOP lack of compassion. I hope those who voted for them see the
    outcome and think twice before they
    make such a mistake again.

  • Bernice Vetsch says:

    July 5, 2011 at 5:27 pm

    No one is calling the rich “evil.”  The only thing that’s evil AND stupid, and is being called what it is, is the idea that the wealthy should be taxed at a lower rate than us because they need the money in order to create jobs.

    The 1999-2000 tax cuts cost our state ONE BILLION DOLLARS PER YEAR for each year of Pawlenty’s reign ... the amount of our deficit plus a few billion more.

    And where, pray tell, are the jobs that were to be created by those who got the tax breaks?

    Many, many of Minnesota’s wealthy have begged that taxes be raised on our highest earners in order to fully fund education, health care, infrastructure maintenance and replacement, public safety and all the other things that—until now—have made Minnesota a wonderful state in which to live.

    The worst thing about the shutdown is the fact that it exists at all and that the price being asked for its end is to hurt our most vulnerable residents more and yet more.  Evil, you might say.

  • Rebecca L says:

    July 6, 2011 at 7:42 am

    The worst is the number of people currently not receiving any financial support from the agencies, organizations, and departments from which they have been furloughed.  The worst part of a government shutdown after the fact will be the thousands (if not millions) lost in revenue from the ill-timed nature of the situation due to the lack of ability for elected representatives to do their jobs.  The taxpayers will be covering their extra per diem expenses, not to mention their late-night dinners. 

    Do average taxpayers/citizens have the same flexibility to not do their jobs if they don’t agree with their administrator’s views?  I think not.

  • Mike says:

    July 6, 2011 at 12:43 pm

    Bernie, right you are! The Repubs were elected because the taxpaying citizens of this state were (are) fed up with the spending going on.  They were voted in to stop the spending and NOT raise taxes on anyone.  I wonder about everyone paying their fair share.  According to some, the rich need to pay their fair share. Why don’t the 38% of citizens that don’t pay taxes have to pay their fair share?  Even a couple of percent tax would make them stakeholders instead of takers.

  • Mike says:

    July 6, 2011 at 12:47 pm

    To Michelle Hawkins, The legislators have NOT broken their employment contract. Quite the contrary, they are living up to the contract with the people that elected them.  They were elected to NOT spend money and NOT raise taxes.  It’s too bad liberals like yourself simply don’t understand.

  • Bernice Vetsch says:

    July 6, 2011 at 3:54 pm

    But the 38% who supposedly pay no taxes DO pay taxes.  They’re excused from income tax because they make so little money it would make their lives even more painful than they are already.

    The taxes they DO pay include sales tax, property tax (as owners or renters), auto license tax, city fees for various services, and the payroll taxes for both Social Security and Medicare.

    They are NOT freeloaders by any means. Many of them work two or three jobs, none of which provides health insurance or enough pay to enjoy even a movie now and then.

  • Lois says:

    July 7, 2011 at 1:19 am

    I am most concerned about the long-term irreversible effects.  For example, I just heard that the DNR has no-one out patrolling boat landings to make sure that boaters are not spreading zebra mussels and Eurasian millfoil?  One these invasive species colonize a lake they’re next to impossible to remove.  What about efforts to contain Emerald Ash Borer?  In efforts like these, time is of the essence.

    And yes, I agree with others who have expressed shame and embarrassment that our wonderful state has gone so low.  I myself am depressed about it—not just about the damage done by the shut-down, but by the divisiveness of the discourse.  Why doesn’t the other side understand that WE the people are the government, and that we are all better off when we are all better off?

  • Michelle Hawkins says:

    July 7, 2011 at 8:25 am

    To Mike,
    You are incorrect in you assumption that elected legislators are to only represent those that voted for them. It is their obligation to represent EVERYONE in their district.

    That means they start from thier party line/platform and compromise until a deal is reached.

    And that is what the republican party used to be, until you fringe elements and extremists were able to dupe the public into voting for your ilk.

    Be very caredful who you call a liberal, as I am not. Oh, that’s right! Extremists think anyone in the middle are “liberal”

  • Mike Banks says:

    July 12, 2011 at 11:33 am

    The lead in paragraph:  Should be…..these are clear examples of how a left wing liberal governor’s refusal to compromise on a fair and balanced budget solution hurts Minnesota prosperity now and in the long term.

  • W. D. (Bill) Hamm says:

    July 12, 2011 at 12:29 pm

    We have the most RACIALLY and ECONOMICALLY biased education system in Minnesota’s history. With 47% of our adults and 20% of our children addicted to legal drugs including 90+% of all pain killers on the planet. With obesity rates amoung the highest on the planet, here you are, many of whom were involved in creating this mess, whining like babies because your not getting any of the 21% budget increase you wanted. How many of the 62% got a 21% increase in their budget. The answer is just about zero, hell we didn’t even get a 5% increase and your crying. God have pity on fools and liars such as these. We not only need an affordable budget we need a realistic and affordable one as well, 21% is unsustainable and you know it.