Let’s Go To The Tape, Round 2

It’s time for another episode of Carver County’s new favorite game show, Let’s Go To The Tape.  In our first episode, we checked the claims of the Carver County Commissioner candidates who said that the League of Women Voters were conducting biased forums.  Believe it or not, we found those claims to be utterly without merit.

In today’s episode, we look at the mini-kerfuffle that has broken out within the Carver County GOP over some live-tweeting by Waconia City Council member Jim Sanborn and Waconia Mayor Jim Nash at last week’s candidate forum in Waconia.  If you go to the comments on the linked post as well as on the Carver County Current site, you see that there’s been some questioning of the accuracy of the tweets, and apparently Nash and Sanborn have been taking some heat for their quoting of Rep. Leidiger at the event.  The video of this event has been posted (you can watch it all at the bottom of this post).

So, Let’s Go To The Tape:

Leidiger’s answer to this question begins at the 23:45 mark in the video.  At 24:15 he says, “In terms of education, certainly, once again, the Republican-controlled House and Senate passed a bill that increased education spending by 8 percent over the last biennium.”

As was noted previously, this answer is not fully the truth.  Yes, the Legislature passed an increase to the basic per-pupil funding formula of $50 in each of the two years and chipped in some one-time money.  However, the school shift that Leidiger voted for resulted in most districts seeing a net decrease in state revenues for the biennium.  Leidiger ignores the impact of the shift in his comment.

And, yes, at 24:38, Leidiger does say “The problem is that under the current system with the union controls, we don’t get the ingenuity that we should in the system.”  That certainly qualifies as criticism of the union.  This Tweet is accurate.

At 30:54, Leidiger says “Well yes, we want our elected officials to really be held to a higher standard.”  You can review how Leidiger has performed here, and see if he meets the standard he sets up for himself.  These Tweets are accurate.

It’s also interesting to note Leidiger’s answer to the previous question regarding the role of government in promoting small business (starting at 27:20).  In that answer, Leidiger not only dodges his own history with small business loans, but criticizes the actions of the Carver County Board saying (at 28:00) “they don’t live by their own regulations”.  This coming from the guy with $144,000 in tax liens?  Pot, meet kettle.

At the 49:00 mark, Leidiger says “I’ve never gotten a job from a poor person, it’s always been from a rich person.”, and at 50:34, he says “There should be an environment where everyone has 2 or 3 jobs that they can go to.”  Yet again, the Tweet in question here is accurate.

At 50:50, Leidiger says “So thank you very much for having us here. I think this has been a great audience and I think its very important that we do these kinds of forums far more than what we have in the past.”  I suppose one could argue over what “these kinds of forums” refer to, but Sanborn and Nash’s inference here (and implicit criticism of Leidiger for skipping the LWV forum) is certainly reasonable.

Seems to me that Sanborn and Nash accurately reported what Leidiger said.  Maybe folks in the Carver County GOP who don’t like it should consider how what Leidiger says matches up with his actions instead of shooting the messenger.


Both Leidiger and State Senator Julianne Ortman refer to the fact that the top 10% of income earners in the state pay over 50% of the income taxes in the state.  This is used to buttress support for reducing taxes on upper-income people.  This is true, but it leaves out some additional context.   According the Department of Revenue’s 2011 Tax Incidence Study, the top 10% earn 42.1% of the state’s income.  They pay 56% of the state’s individual income tax.  However, the individual income tax is less than 50% of the state’s tax base.  When you take into account all state taxes, the top 10% only pay 41.6% of all state taxes.  If you factor local taxes into the mix (because local budgets are highly influenced by state taxes), the top 10% only pay 37.8% of all state and local taxes.  So, in reality, those high-income folks are well-protected in our existing tax code.

Whenever you hear a politician talk about tax burdens but only give you statistics that reference one kind of tax, watch out because it’s very likely they’re trying to avoid telling you the whole story.

Here’s the entire video of the event:


13 Responses to “Let’s Go To The Tape, Round 2”

  1. You reside in a different orbit or something. I never said the GOP was upset with the content. I said I disagreed with it, personally, but I never said the GOP did. I did say they might get reprimanded for publically doing something like this, but that’s mere specualtion, as I stated, fairly clearly, I thought.

    As you can clearly see for yourself, as you even note above, these things are snipped interpretations of what was said. I’m not going to argue with you over your interpretation over mine. It’s seems you can’t understand normal thinking processes.

    I mean you have some serious Ernie issues with the way to parse out every single utterance ever made by the man. I have to ask again, what did Ernie have for lunch yesterday. Certainly, you done the exam by now and found nothing abnormal, or it would be on this site, right? Any peanuts or corn left over, by chance? Jeepers.

    • On the Carver County Current site on October 25, you said:

      “I’ve asked the Jim’s for explanations as to what their purpose is for doing this. I’ve yet to hear a response. I can tell you the Party is very upset with them for what they’ve done, and their actions will be addressed.”

      This doesn’t square at all with what you just said. Your 10/25 comments clearly state that “the Party is very upset”. “The Party” is you, then?

      As you noted previously, I wasn’t at the event, and I was pleased to get a look at the video so I could confirm that was Sanborn and Nash reported was accurate. Their Tweets, in fact, prove out to be almost word-for word what Leidiger said. I would also argue that they’re not taken out of context, either. It’s not like Leidiger actually talked about the shift in his K-12 education discussion and it just wasn’t tweeted by Sanborn and Nash. He never mentioned it!

      That’s really what this post is about — examining whether the tweets were accurate — not Leidiger himself.

      • They were upset with them for using TWEETS to do this. We’ve had conversations about this since, and we’ve got our resolutions.

        I shouldn’t have said anything about Nash either, as he’s a Republican seeking to be re-elected. I would have gotten chewed out for what I did, had his election been a partisan race. (For the record, I was unaware Jim, Nash was up for re-election because it is a non-partisan race, and I don’t live in his town. I’m busy enough with the partisan races this year).

        And again, you are parsing what Ernie said, basically putting words in his mouth. We did increase education spending, by more than the governor even wanted to. So there was a shift. No biggie. We were all set to pay some back, but your governor likes playing politics with the schools. Why? Because the unions want him too. Their own actions make the unions culprits. Nothing unusual there. It’s fairly widely known that the unions are the problems with education, not the teachers, nor the funding. In fact, unions ahve a lot to do with the cost of these new schools we build.

        The thing about the 2 or 3 jobs is that we should all of 2 or 3 options to find work, even those unfortunate sould who lack education. Of course you take to mean Ernie thinks we should all have 2 or 3 jobs to make living. That’s why I don’t want to argue with you his points. He has 1 minute to make a response, and you can’t hit a lot of points in under a minute. So to take this snippets as gospel with no oportunity for clarification is basically useless.

        Serious, look the ramblings of Pickering. The difference between you and I is I accept Pickering for who he is, an extremely far left candidate who doesn’t need to be nit picked to see he’s way out there. If what Ernie said was so far off base, A: He’d never get elected, and B: you wouldn’t need to attempt to make something out if it. The very fact that you go so far out of your way to demean this man speaks volumes. You wouldn’t need to if you had a candidate that had a remote chance in hell of beating him.

        I wish you’d at least lend some credibility to your rants and put your money where your mouth is. I guess being a muck-raker is somehow more satisfying? I wonder how long you can keep it up, since it seems to have no effect on the race. How long have you been trying to dig up dirt? Or make up dirt? Or insinuate that which isn’t there? You’ve accomplished nothing. He had no challengers at the convention, and your party offers this flop. You must know what it’s like to have house you built with your hands destroyed by high winds. Probably should have made it out of something solid.

        • Did the state spend more or less on education than the baseline budget in this biennium? The answer is less, because of the shift. Only in right-wing world can you spend less and call it an increase.

          I never commented on the 2 or 3 jobs line, so I would appreciate it going forward if you would only criticize the things I actually said.

        • As for Pickering, I don’t see anything terribly “far left-wing” about him. (Of course, your definition of “far left-wing” is probably anyone more liberal than say, Norm Coleman.)

          At the forum, he talked about lowering property taxes and recouping the lost income via the income tax. Julianne Ortman talked about lowering property taxes and broadening the sales tax. Two different approaches, neither of which are terribly radical, and both have advantages and disadvantages.

          Let me ask you, John: if you lived in Minneapolis, would you keep silent about what your representation there? I suspect you wouldn’t. I have no idea if what I do is going to change the election or not, nor do I have any way to measure whether it has any effect. I put information out there and make it available. Based on who has responded to me, I know that I’ve influenced the conversation, and that’s enough for me.

          I would say, though, that there is a critical difference between you and I. You seem to be solely focused on advancing the Republican Party. I’m focused on advancing certain issues — not a particular party line. (The DFL has wanted me on several occasions to sit in on their blogger calls and get their talking points. I’m not interested. You can see who does sit in on those calls, though.)

          It just so happens that right now my position on those issues tends to line up more with DFL positions. But I vote for the best candidate in relation to my positions. That may or may not be the DFL candidate — lately, it has been because the Minnesota GOP has shifted so far to the right. I’ve voted for Republicans before, and I’ve voted for IP candidates before. I’ll continue to take that approach, and I hope that there’s a time when the Republican Party comes back off the ledge and re-embraces the ways of pragmatic, effective folks like Jim Ramstad.

          • I’d also point out that there are many conservatives in local government across the County that I approve of (at least at the local level). I supported Jay Rohe for Chaska Mayor when he ran a few years back, and I’m pleased he’ll be back on the City Council. Mayors like Greg Osterdyk and Jim Nash do a good job of representing their cities. By and large, the Chanhassen City Council has done a good job. When you boil it down, these aren’t partisan jobs, despite your party’s claim that they are.

      • Also note that Jim Nash and I had a good conversation about this. He’s a guy that I respect on many levels. Like any other, I’m sure there’s things we disagree on.

        Sometimes we all make mistakes and we let this all get a bit personal when we probably shouldn’t. It happens. But with you, it’s an obsession, which I’ll never understand. I mean you don’t even live in his district.

        SO in our party, we hace some work to do, as you do in yours. Not everyone sees eye to eye, and every now then something bubbles to the surface that proabably shouldn’t. We’re mostly volunteers just trying to do the right things and stand for the things we believe in, and yes, we get passionate and sometimes even get carried away. We’re going to work on that. We’re all fired up because we have the momentum, and we want to strike while the iron is hot, because after many, many years of ever growing government, we’re seeing the failures of trickle-down government. 2 years ago we saw an uprising of the GOP from every type of office across the entire country after a glimpse of life under Democratic control. We’ve seen the disaster this leads to. And we will get our house in order come together as a team, like we always do, and work through these challenges and come out stronger on the other side.

        • I do live in Leidiger’s district, at least until next week (or January, technically).

          • You vote under the new lines, not the old ones. You’ll be voting for Hoppe unless you’re moving. ( or a write-in since he’s un-opposed).

            • Yes, John, I understand how it works.

              • So, why do you waste so much energy on this? And to what end? He’s still going to get elected.

                • It’s important to hold our elected officials accountable — doesn’t matter if they’re in a so-called “safe” district or not (In fact, I could argue it’s more important to do so in such districts). I would also argue that if Leidiger wins and continues to rack up demerits over the next two years the way he did in his first two, he’s going to be far less safe.

                  • Good thing your “accountability” doesn’t add up to much. The only thing he’s done wrong was screw up his campaign report, and even that was questionable.

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