Arends painted the picture all wrong

Published 9:50 am Friday, June 11, 2010

This is in response to the article by Al Arends published in the June 9 edition of the Albert Lea Tribune.

First of all, the 2010 election is on Nov. 2, not Nov. 4.

Second of all, the Legislature did pass multiple pieces of legislation that actually balanced the state budget only to see Gov. Tim Pawlenty veto these proposals. The action by Gov. Tim Pawlenty was ridiculous.

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In 2009, Gov. Tim Pawlenty signed every appropriation bill sent to him by the Legislature, and then he vetoed the revenue bill that would have paid for these programs. The action by Gov. Tim Pawlenty to sign appropriation bills without the necessary revenue was ridiculous.

In 2009, Gov. Tim Pawlenty misused his unallotment powers by arbitrarily cutting state programs only to have the Minnesota Supreme Court rule his actions illegal. His actions were also ridiculous.

Gov. Tim Pawlenty has been traveling around the United States bragging that he served for eight years and did not raise any taxes. These statements by Gov. Tim Pawlenty are ridiculous and false. He signed the cigarette tax increase, and local property taxes have doubled during the past eight years under his lack of leadership due mainly to underfunding schools and reducing local government aid, which is of great benefit to outstate Minnesotata cities and counties.

Ten years ago, state Rep. Tim Pawlenty voted to give the highest income earners a large income tax break that resulted in the wealthiest Minnesotans paying a lower rate of income tax than middle income Minnesotans. As governor, Tim Pawlenty has continued to protect these tax breaks. This action is ridiculous. If we cannot afford to pay for local schools and nursing homes, we cannot afford to continue to pay for tax breaks for the wealthy.

Gov. Tim Pawlenty vetoed the increase in the gas tax even after the Interstate 35 bridge collapsed killing and injuring Minnesotans. This action was ridiculous. Thankfully, a bipartisan group of legislators voted to override the governor’s veto to provide funding for safe roads and bridges for our citizens.

In 144 days, voters will go to the polls to elect their representatives to serve in the state Legislature and in Congress. My hope is that each political party and candidate run an open and honest campaign that is focused on positive proposals on how we may bring our nation and our state together to solve the very serious problems we are facing.

Name calling has no place in politics. We should all be mature enough to study the issues, and propose positive ideas on solving the important questions on how we are going to encourage the growth of good paying jobs in Minnesota, on how we are are going to adequately and fairly finance our public schools, on how we are going to take care of our elderly in our nursing homes, and how we are going to provide safe roads and bridges for our citizens.

Joseph E. Brown Sr.

Moscow Township