Nohealthcareville and other “highlights” of the 2011 legislative session

Well, that was fun, wasn’t it?  We’re a couple of days downstream from the end of the official 2011 legislative session, and it’s a marvel to look back at the last four months and see everything that didn’t get done. 

Republican majorities in the House and Senate offered no meaningful compromise from their pre-session position, while Governor Dayton changed the substance of his proposal significantly.

Let’s look back at some of the budget bills that were passed (and vetoed) and some of key provisions.  All of these were voted for by the Carver County legislative contingent of Sen. Julianne Ortman, Rep. Ernie Leidiger, and Rep. Joe Hoppe.

These sorts of budget provisions are not in character with what has made Minnesota great place to live for decades.  The Republican majorities are undercutting the things that have given Minnesota a competitive advantage — well-educated people, well-maintained infrastructure, and a safety net that protects the most vulnerable in our society.  You can’t out-Mississippi Mississippi, and we shouldn’t even try.

It wasn’t just the budget that made news during the session, though.  Despite their alleged focus on jobs and the budget, Republicans used their majorities to jam through numerous bills on divisive social issues.

And, of course, no recap of the session would be complete without a reminder of Leidiger’s Bradlee Dean fiasco last week.

These are not the values that Carver County residents believe in.  We don’t believe in dividing.  We don’t believe in focusing on the sideshow while critical problems go unaddressed.  Let’s hope that cooler heads will prevail over the next month and both sides can agree to a sensible, balanced solution to our budget crisis.

(Cartoon from the StarTribune via


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