DFL48 | Restoring Common Sense Minnesota Values




Truth vs. Republican Spin Chapter 4

The GOP claim: The GOP plan adequately funds transportation.


150128-Transpo-Myth5.3-1920x1080The GOP plan would fund the equivalent of one major bridge in 2016 and fix a few hundred miles of roads over the following three years — and then it ends. The GOP plan funds just an eighth of the $6 billion in needs.

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Truth vs. Republican Spin Chapter 1

The GOP claim: The need is overstated — we don’t NEED to raise taxes to fix our roads and bridges.


150128-Transpo-Myth1-1920x1080A group of Minnesota business leaders (Target, Polaris, RBC Capital Markets), economists, the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce, county officials, members of the legislature from both parties, and MnDOT officials worked together to issue a report that concluded Minnesota faces a $6 billion funding deficit for Minnesota roads and bridges over the next ten years.

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Ken Martin on GOP and Money

Big Money“Just 10 days ago the Speaker of the Minnesota House, Kurt Daudt, the highest ranking Republican elected official in the State of Minnesota, laid out hundreds of millions of dollars in new spending for things like tax cuts, transportation infrastructure, nursing home funding, and K-12 higher education spending. And while his math didn’t quite add up, the fact of the matter is that there hasn’t been a single bill introduced by Republican House members to cut spending this year. Clearly, Speaker Daudt and House Republicans agree with DFLers that we should use this surplus to invest in the critical unmet needs facing Minnesotans throughout the state. 

“Now today the Chairman of the Republican Party of Minnesota is calling on the legislature to send every surplus dollar back to Minnesota residents in the form of a $350 per person check.  Not only is this shortsighted, it ignores recent history that proves that the Ventura rebates helped create the financial difficulties we faced during the early 2000s. If we do as Chairman Downey is suggesting and return every dollar of the surplus to Minnesotans we will not be able to make the investments in Minnesota that even Speaker Daudt and House Republicans agree need to be met – like repairing our roads and bridges and investing in our education system throughout the state.

“The fact is that Chairman Downey should do his job of building the party to win elections and focus less on taking positions such as this which are squarely at odds with the highest ranking elected Republican in the State of Minnesota. His insistence on ideological purity pits him against fair-minded Republicans who are trying to do the job they were sent to do in St. Paul. Who’s in charge here the Speaker of the House or the Chairman of the Republican Party? What kind of dynamic does this create when elected Republicans of the Minnesota House have to choose between the Republican State Party Chair or governing in the best interests of the constituents who elected them. Are Republicans in the Minnesota House going to put their oath to Minnesotans ahead of their oath to the Republican Party? 

“It is unbelievable that a party that still owes $1.5 million dollars in debt, including some $300,000 to vendors who worked in the 2014 election, would spend six figures on advertising to persuade legislators – presumably from their own party – to return the surplus and put us back on a path to financial instability.  It is the height of hypocrisy that the party of ‘fiscal responsibility’ would go further into debt to beat members of their own party into ideological submission.”

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GOP Rep. Kirk Stensrud Misuses City Logo

originally posted by Twoputttommy on the mnprogrssiveproject.net website October 17, 2012:

Stensrud-12-09Stensrud-12-09In early January of 2011, the GOP took control of both the House and Senate in the Minnesota Legislature.  By the end of the month, the first of what would become many Republican scandals erupted.  It seems GOP Senator Scott Newman’s office decided they wouldn’t meet with the Minnesota Nurses Association because they had the audacity to support someone else in the preceeding election.

The email from the newly hired, two weeks on the job Legislative Assistant was quite clear.  Let’s look!

Hi Eileen-Unfortunately, Senator Newman will not see any organizations that donated to/supported his opponent Hal Kimball. After some careful checking, I discovered that the MNA had donated to Kimball’s campaign. Your association will be unable to schedule an appointment with Senator Newman.

Kim Kelley
Legislative Assistant

In the ensuing months, not only Republicans, but the Republican Party managed to stay in the news – and not for good reason, but the old-fashioned reason:  they EARNED it.

Who can forget the months and Months and MONTHS of the State GOP stiffing Minnesota Counties on their recount debts?  This resulted in an Editorial from The Winona Daily News in June: “Our view: GOP, practice what you preach”.

In August, news of the Federal Elections Commission nailing the State GOP with a massive fine for campaign finance violations broke.  How massive?  $170,000 – the 2nd largest ever to a State Political Party (Arkansas GOPers hold the record).

The end of the year’s shame and disrepute brought four GOP State Senators – Gerlach, Senjem, Michel and Hann – sitting at a table at a Press Conference, with one – Michel – later explaining, essentially:  “I only lied because I had to.”  Of course, while Michel smiled at the camera and lied through his teeth, Gerlach, Senjem and Hann said not a word to correct the record.

And what a “record” year Minnesota Republicans had!

The December 17th, 2011 Star Tribune headline and story said it all: “State GOP staggered by debt, scandal”

In 2012, State Republicans continued their Sessions of Scoundrels.  Most notable were Republicans in August 2012 again caught telling whoppers to the media; this time to Fox9 TV Reporter Tom Lyden.

Lyden had the email; he had the video.  And was basically asked “who ya gonna believe – us, or yer lyin’ eyes?” (see MnGOP State Senate: “…we are in this together…” and MnGOP State Senate: We Are In This Together Part 2).

So it came as no surprise that I found myself in Eden Prairie’s City Council Chambers last night, covering a story about Republican shenanigans – this time concerning Incumbent GOP State Representative Kirk Stensrud.  See that picture, up in the far right of this column?  That’s a small part from one side of a Stensrud flyer – let’s look!


The story told last night, at Eden Prairie’s City Council Meeting, is a local resident was at Eden Prairie’s Senior Center, utilizing the wood shop when he saw the above.  And most notable, in the above, are all of the logos on the flier.  Logos for groups attending what Stensrud told the resident, at the time, was a purported “senior forum.”  And said flier, on the reverse (in much smaller font), said: “Prepared and paid for by Friends for Kirk Stensrud”.

In other words, Stensrud’s re-election campaign.

Now, about those logos?  Eden Prairie’s is trademarked.  That was made clear last night at the City Council meeting.  And the Mayor and Council members were not amused that Stensrud used it without permission; used it without permission for a campaign flier; used it without permission for a campaign flier for a campaign event.  And the discussion among the Mayor and the Council Members made it very clear:  it was, by definition of election laws, a “campaign event.”

The Council instructed the City Attorney to send a letter to Stensrud’s campaign about this.  What it said isn’t yet known; when a copy is obtained through Data Paractices, I’ll update.

What also isn’t known – yet – is if the other organizations – including Hennepin County – have similar concerns about their logo being used on a campaign flier for a campaign event.  So, stay tuned.

What is known, is that a Lawmaker didn’t follow the law.  While Stensrud’s level of transgressions clearly don’t reach/sink to the levels cited above, it’s clearly a pattern.

It’s a pattern clearly displayed by Minnesota Republicans over the last two years.  That pattern is exactly why GOPers such as Stensrud – and David Hann – need to be voted out.

And remember:  You Couldn’t Trust The GOP Then, You Still Can’t Now, And Tomorrow Won’t Be Any Different.

Here’s a link to the original post.


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©2014 DFL SD 48. Prepared and paid for by Senate District 48 DFL, Sharon Borine, Chair, 18285 Croixwood Ln, Eden Prairie, MN 55347