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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Steven Jacob (R)

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Tuesday, May 23, 2023

ST. PAUL – With the 2023 legislative session now in the rearview mirror, State Representative Steve Jacob (R-Altura) said the gavel dropped in disappointing fashion, as Democrat leadership and Governor Walz spent the state’s $17.5 billion budget surplus and raised $9.5 billion in taxes to boot.


“What Minnesotans wanted, and expected, with a record budget surplus was significant and permanent tax relief,” Jacob said. “Instead, some will receive a one-time rebate that might pay for a week’s worth of groceries and a bunch of state policy changes that range from questionable to downright embarrassing.”


Jacob said Democrats increased state spending by 43% this session and placed numerous burdensome mandates and tax increases on every employer and worker in our 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 pulltabs as we know them have also been eliminated, 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, extreme abortion policy was adopted that resembles that of fringe regimes in China and North Korea. Illegal immigrants are also now eligible to enroll in the Minnesota’s publicly subsidized health insurance program for low-income residents, and they can also receive a state-issued driver’s license.


In public safety, a state-funded branch of thought police/speech registry was created, language was passed that could potentially give pedophiles protection as a sexual orientation, 2nd Amendment rights were infringed, 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, 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 – by 2040, which is expected to make our energy more unreliable, unaffordable, and dangerous during the winter months.   


“When one party has complete control of state government, there is no incentive at all to work across the aisle to find common ground and make better policy,” Jacob said. “This is why we now have many state laws that defy common sense for most who live in Greater Minnesota.”