With the 2023 legislative session now in the rearview mirror, District 21B Rep. Marj Fogelman said the gavel dropped in disappointing fashion as Democrat leadership and Gov. Tim Walz spent the state’s $17.5 billion budget surplus and raised $9.5 billion in taxes to boot.
Said Fogelman, a Fulda Republican: “With a record budget surplus, Minnesotans thought they would get a permanent break on their tax burdens. As it turns out, their tax burdens are actually going to worsen because they’re going to pay more for a growing state government.” Fogelman said Democrats increased state spending by 40% this session and placed numerous burdensome mandates and tax increases on every employer and worker in the state. They also raised the gasoline tax and failed to follow through on their campaign promise to eliminate the tax on Social Security for all Minnesota seniors. Electronic pull tabs as we know them have also been eliminated, she added, which is expected to have a devastating impact on local legions and VFW’s, as well as the charities, nonprofits, and youth organizations who benefit from the charitable gaming proceeds generated by them.
In the area of health, Fogelman noted extreme abortion policy was adopted that resembles that of fringe regimes in China and North Korea.
Fogelman stated that In public safety, a state-funded branch of thought police/speech registry was created, second Amendment rights were infringed, and criminals convicted of violent crimes including manslaughter, rape, kidnapping, assault, or domestic assault could be eligible to serve only half of their prison sentence or probation if they complete Department of Corrections programming. In addition, Fogelman said, more than $215 million will be spent to provide “free” college to Minnesota students if their family has an adjusted gross income below $80,000. The “blackout bill” was also signed into law, which will eliminate carbon energy sources -- such as coal and natural gas -- by 2040, She said that the law is expected to make our energy more unreliable, unaffordable, and dangerous during the winter months.