It’s time to pay

Published 12:00 am Friday, July 30, 1999

From staff reports

The governor ain’t got time to pay.

Friday, July 30, 1999

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The governor ain’t got time to pay. Minnesota’s legislative auditor says Gov. Jesse Ventura or his publisher should pay the $16,000 tab for paying three security guards and a staff member to take off on his cross-country book tour. The governor says no way.

While the state is obligated to protect the governor, it is not under a mandate to pay for his private business expenses. Under normal operations, there would be no need to pay state troopers to traipse across the country.

Taxpayers and state lawmakers would be appalled if a state employee used office equipment or other state property to start a private business. Why is the same reasoning used for the governor?

Does the state really need to flip the bill when all Ventura is doing is promoting himself and making money for it? Touring the country to promote a book that is objectionable to many families across the state is not doing Minnesotans’ businesses, so why should Minnesotans pay?

The attorney general notes that no laws have been broken by the governor’s actions. Why is that?

Because there are no specific laws on the books.

Maybe it’s time to let our lawmakers know that we want to safeguard our tax dollars and ensure politicians aren’t using them for private business.