We said and heard it plenty in the run-up to the 2010 elections: if the Republican Party were granted access to the levers of power, in Washington or St. Paul, it would be incumbent upon them to actually help govern the nation and our state.
But what have we gotten from their shiny new majorities in the state legislature? Have we seen a single bill focused on job creation and economic progress?
I went through the list of bills offered in the State House so far this session, and couldn’t find a single one.
Here’s an abbreviated list of what the GOP House Majority has offered so far, however:
H. F. 4, A bill for an act relating to state government; requiring a reduction in the state workforce;
H. F. 5, A bill for an act relating to state government; instituting a salary and wage freeze for state employees;
Read: destroying vital government services is just fine as long as we can stick it to AFSCME in the process.
H. F. 24, A bill for an act relating to natural resources; requiring a state trail bicycling pass;
H. F. 64, A bill for an act relating to state government; designating English as the official language;
Yet another solution without a problem.
H. F. 65, A bill for an act proposing an amendment to the Minnesota Constitution, article I, by adding a section; establishing a freedom of employment.
Read: so-called “right to work” legislation, which essentially castrates organized labor, reduces worker wages and protections, and lowers standards of living for the middle class. Just ask Tennessee.
H. F. 66, A bill for an act relating to the state budget; budget priorities; repealing the political contribution refund;
H. F. 95, A bill for an act relating to waters; eliminating Mississippi River critical area;
H. F. 125, A bill for an act relating to state government finance; making reductions to executive branch agencies and the legislature.
H. F. 130, A bill for an act relating to state government finance; making appropriation reductions for fiscal year 2011, policy changes, and appropriation reductions for fiscal years 2012 and 2013; making changes to tax aids and credits and reducing payments;
This bill is a lot more nefarious than its description seems; it’s basically a continuation of the LGA cuts Tim Pawlenty used to bend Minnesota’s cities and towns over a barrel.
H. F. 131, A bill for an act proposing an amendment to the Minnesota Constitution, article I; providing that the right of citizens to keep, bear, and use arms for certain purposes is fundamental and shall not be infringed.
This bill is especially hilarious since it was filed by one Tom Hackbarth, who recently had a run-in with the St. Paul police involving Hackbarth, his concealed firearm, and his stalking-like attempts to find a woman he met on a dating website.
H. F. 161, A bill for an act relating to firearms; extending time period for renewal of permit to purchase firearm from federally licensed dealer;
H. F. 201, A bill for an act relating to health; limiting use of funds for state-sponsored health programs for funding abortions.
A whole lot of culture war legislation that will immediately be vetoed by Governor Dayton, and literally nothing so far focused on job creation and retention.
It may be time to start a clock tracking how many days until the GOP proposes something in the area of job creation.