As Minnesota out distances Wisconsin in almost every way, Republicans should be forced to answer the question why Wisconsin can't keep up. Oh sure, they'll bore us with old talking points that in no way compares to the way Minnesota is beating us. Scott Walker can't pull out his only bragging point about the unemployment numbers since Minnesota's is even lower.
Growth may be slower in Minnesota, but that's because the state has already recovered, while Wisconsin is still trying to gained back the jobs lost during the Bush Great Recession.
But Walker's Republicans will say Minnesota's surplus is bad, because it means they've overtaxed their citizens. SJ:
While Wisconsin's budget, enacted in July, sets the state up for a $210 million structural deficit, legislators across the Mississippi are arguing over how to spend a $1.9 billion surplus.
Give that surplus money back!!! That's what George W. said when he became president, paving the way for tax cuts. Instead of using those surpluses to pay the nations debt and replace our crumbling infrastructure, he wiped out what Mitch Daniels called "surpluses as far as the eye could see." And for good measure, plunged the nation into trillion dollar wars.
Projected surpluses should be used to replenish and rebuild, improve and save, not give back as tax cuts. The money we invest now will be money our kids will not have to raise later on in the form of taxes. Tax cuts now just gives the bill to another generation.
Some of Minnesota's extra money must go to its budget reserves, but the remaining $1.2 billion is up for grabs. Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton, a Democrat, is calling for the money to be spent on road and bridge improvements and expanding early childhood education.
But Minnesota Republicans argue a surplus that large is a sure sign the state has overtaxed its citizens.
Wisconsin legislators will have a $210 million projected shortfall to account for going into the 2017-19 budget.