Transcript:Dayton, Emmer, Horner Debate On TPT

Mark Dayton, Tom Emmer and Tom Horner

Mark Dayton (DFL) Tom Emmer (R) & Tom Horner (IP)

Candidates for Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton (DFL), Tom Emmer (R) and Tom Horner (IP) held their first post-primary debate on Twin Cities Public Television’s Almanac.  Watch the video here. Click on the headline to replay our live blog and read the debate transcript or Click Here for a pop up window.

Full transcript
Eric Eskola:
We’re tossing out the regular format this week. Instead we’ll have a one-hour conversation with the three leading candidates for Governor
they survived Tuesday’s primary. Let’s see how they’re doing at eight o’clock.
We’re calling this a debate but there are no stopwatches, lecterns or opening and closing statements. We just want to talk.

Cathy Wurzer:
A quick word on who is joining us tonight. We’ve invited every candidate on the fall ballot who has received at least five percent support in an independent statewide poll.  We invited them and they showed up.

Here they are in alphabetical order

Mark Dayton is the Democrat in the race. He’s a former US Senator

Tom Emmer is the Republican nominee. He’s a member of the state House of Representatives

Tom Horner is the candidate of the Independence party he’s a long-time public relations executive

Good to see you all, thank you so much

Well Tom since the camera is on you let’s talk about tax reform. Whose taxes are going to go up in a Horner administration and why

Tom Horner: Well it’s not so much whose taxes are going to go up it’s more a matter of how are we going to reduce taxes on job creators and make sure we have an economic environment in which jobs can grow entrepreneurs have the the investment capital they need. And to to meet the needs of the state we are going to have to have to raise some revenues. So my proposal has been let’s lower the rate of the sales tax broaden the base, make it fairer include and collect the revenue we need.

Cathy Wurzer: What do you want. What do you want. Go ahead.

Erik Eskola:  What kind of stuff would have a sales tax on it that doesn’t now?

Tom Horner: Clothing, personal services, those kinds of of the activities.

Cathy Wurzer: Services like…

Tom Horner: Maybe a haircut. I mean let’s put everything on the table. See what makes sense. And see how we can make sure that we have the kind of Minnesota  that I think most of us want to live in

Cathy Wurzer:Are you fine with some income tax increases?

Tom Horner: No. Because income taxes fall so heavily on job creators. I mean you talk to people around the state and they’ll tell you that that’s the last tax that we ought to increase. It’s going to push us to the top of the nation.

Cathy Wurzer: Tom Emmer you are not going to raise tax. You’ve been talking about that for a while.  Where will you find savings to the tune of six billion dollars as we are looking at a six billion dollar budget shortfall?

Tom Emmer: Well we’ve already given you several and…

Cathy Wurzer: And folks just have not been listening? Give them some…

Emmer: Well just a, just a just a few. We’ve talked about how opting into the  medical assistance will cost the state four hundred eighty million over the first three years we are five to seven billion dollars in debt.  It’ll destroy our ability to innovate. Minnesota
prides itself on a system , a health care system that’s designed to provide high-quality care at low cost and that’s the way we like to reward our providers. That’s what drives the innovation. If you opt into uh early medical assistance  the federal government’s program only rewards on volume services.  We’ve also talked about Minnesota care for instance… redesigning Minnesota care. You can save up to roughly a quarter of a billion dollars without affecting the service. In fact I believe you will improve the service delivery of that program

Cathy Wurzer:How about nursing homes?  That’s a big tax on the

Emmer: Absolutely, but it you know what it is Cathy, it’s about priorities. I mean what you’re going to hear tonight is that there are people in this race that believe it business as usual… just government’s out of money. Guess what?  You gotta go to the hard-working men and women of this state. The businesses of this state. They’ve got to pony up more money. We’re going to spread out that the taxing authority of the state. We’re going to draw in more revenue rather than look at what we’re doing, set our priorities. Nursing homes and senior citizens should be a priority and should be properly funded. But you’ve got all this excess in government already.. and then the bigger issue because the budget, even though it is a huge issue…five toss even billion dollars you got to balance it. But that’s only a symptom of the real problem. It’s an economic problem. We got to start bringing jobs back to this state. Put people to work.

Erik Eskola: Senator Dayton, Senator Dayton. Your plan has been well explained,  I think,  that you’re going to raise income tax on those a hundred thirty thousand dollar a year earners restore or families a hundred fifty thousand dollars a year earners. is that negotiable with the legislature or is that something you’re going to be pretty hard core on?

Mark Dayton:It’s certainly negotiable, and that’s taxable income Eric. That’s gross income for an individual of over a hundred thirty thousand if you assume a fifteen percent deduction and over almost a hundred seventy five thousand dollars for for joint filers.  But the difference here is rhetoric and reality. You know if I do the quick math, Representative Emmer, you’re still over five and a quarter billion away from the six billion dollar deficit and you’re not going to raise taxes, but property taxes will go up with your proposal inevitably as they have under Governor Pawlenty  And mister Horner wants to raise the sales tax and extend it to clothing you know that’s a very regressive tax that falls on middle-income working lower-middle income families. So a basic difference between the three of us is I want to make taxes progressive and I want the richest Minnesotans who are not paying their fair share now according to the Minnesota Department of Revenue. They’re not paying the same percent as everyone else.

Cathy Wurzer: But even your democratic opponents said that we’d become the highest tax state in the country.

Mark Dayton:No, that’s just not true. As I said at the debate, you know the Minnesota Taxpayers Association ranks us now on state and local taxes per thousand dollars of of the personal income at twenty-first among the states. If you were to take my hand tax increases, we’d rank eleventh. And the fact is we’re about that in terms of our our income so that puts us about equal in terms of the tax burden with other states.

Erik Eskola: Is there something wrong with the Dayton plan

Tom Emmer: Dayton… you know with all due respect Senator you know I I’ve actually been living outside of government while you’ve been serving inside and there is a uh a basic flaw. First the plan that you’ve offered it really isn’t a plan. Even public radio I think said it was wishful thinking. But you gotta understand it’s not just about balancing the budget. You know it’s amazing to me that your family created a great business created a… in fact one of the best businesses in the state of Minnesota nationally maybe in even internationally. And now what we’re suggesting is that we’re going to put a target on the back of the Target corporation is your family’s business.

Mark Dayton:If you’re talking the Target thing, it’s behind your back.

Tom Emmer: You’re going to put a target, you’re going to put a target on the back of every business in this state. We can’t do this. That’s simply not true, by the way, that we’re going to raise property taxes and if you just do me the courtesy. The problem we have is first off your plan can’t work. The numbers don’t add up. More importantly, it’s just doing the same thing we’ve been doing around here for years. What you’re missing is you’ve gotta be driving your private economy. You got to be growing jobs in this state.

Cathy Wurzer: If his plan doesn’t work what’s your plan?

Tom Emmer: I’ve already told you.

Mark Dayton: May I respond to that, since my family’s been brought into this may I respond?

Cathy Wurzer: Sure, go ahead.

Mark Dayton: Let me tell you about my family Representative Emmer.  Let me tell you about my uncle Ken who passed on.  And when…a few years before that he looked at our collective family income for the year and it had gone up from the year before. And our taxes are going up.

One of my conservative cousins said you know we’re paying more taxes. And my uncle kind of looked him in the eye and said “we should want to pay more taxes, ’cause that means we’re doing better. And if we are doing better then we have a responsibility to pay more taxes.

Now what’s happened with the ethic that you promote, and Governor Pawlenty, and you supported this and you’re going to carry it to a further extreme, is that the richest Minnesotans are not going to pay their fair share of taxes and everyone else will pay more. Under your plan, under mister Horner’s plan, it’s simple facts are they will pay your property taxes, they’ll pay more sales taxes. That’s not fair.

Tom Emmer: Just hang on a second.

Mark Dayton: Now will you give me the courtesy.

Tom Emmer: I will. I will. I thought you were done. I apologize.

Mark Dayton: I see. That’s wrong. That’s not fair to other Minnesotans to have their taxes go up while the richest people avoid paying their fair share.

Tom Emmer: But Senator, here’s the thing. You just said it. Your family was allowed to create opportunity. They were allowed to drive a business which in turn created the quality of life that they enjoy. That’s exactly what we’re talking about. We want to imp… increase everybody’s opportunity just like your family had.  And you know what? That’s where the additional revenue. Cathy, comes from. That’s what everybody’s missing here. You drive new jobs. You drive new businesses, you will drive additional revenue that’s how you drive what you expect out of the economy.

Erik Eskola: Can you grow.. can you grow out of a six billion dollar problem?

Tom Horner: Now I think you understand why I’m in the race. If you think four more years of this is going to create jobs is going to move Minnesota forward… It’s going to to take our schools that now are going to four-day weeks and improve their quality, improve health care then there’s your choice.

I think most of us in Minnesota believe that we need something different. Representative Emmer talks about the status quo.  He’s right. But all we hear over here is let’s just cut the status quo and everything will be better and from the other side let’s just make the status quo bigger and everything will be better. I believe most of us in Minnesota are saying we need something different than the status quo. The status quo isn’t working let’s really do something different let’s throw out the old paradigm let’s throw out the old models and let’s really get to work, find that consensus and figure out how we do it.

Mark Dayton: Mister Horner may I just say if changing the status quo is extend sales tax to clothing, then I look forward to giving Minnesotans the opportunity to see, if that’s the direction they want to go…

Tom Horner: Senator let me just tell you that, that when you go around the state, when you talk to small businesses most of whom pay taxes at the individual tax rate they’re saying if we have a doubling of our tax rate as you’re proposing, we’re out of business. If you double our tax rate we don’t have the money to invest in the new equipment. If you double our tax rate we can’t afford to create the new jobs that Minnesota needs.

Mark Dayton:First of all I’m not going to double their tax rate.

Tom Horner:Of course, well..

Mark Dayton: And secondly, go back again to the principle. Do you think the richest people in the state, people making over a million dollars a year should pay only two-thirds of percent of their income in state and local taxes compared to everybody else. Compared to a police officer compared to a nurse. Do you think that’s fair?

Tom Horner:Senator I think the discussion we ought to be having that both of you are missing is we really need a different tax system. What we have is a tax system created in the sixties and seventies. It just doesn’t work today. And all you’re proposing is on the Republican side we can’t even do tax reform because we can’t raise taxes in order to sustain the cuts. And you’re (Dayton) just saying let’s just take the one tax that

that we have and, and, and, that already is at the highest,  one of the highest in the country and push it even higher I think both of you are wrong.

Cathy Wurzer: Do we need a different tax system?

Tom Emmer: yeah I mean I think ultimately you should not be taxing production and income. I think that’s probably correct but here’s the problem you’re talking about status quo. both of you are not looking at the fact that you don’t want to redesign government you don’t wanna make it more efficient. And Senator, the richest people in Minnesota you’ve got down to a hundred twenty four thousand dollars, in some cases a hundred and thirty thousand dollars.

Mark Dayton: (Inaudible)

Tom Emmer: You know there are a lot of people… that’s the middle class in Minnesota that you’re going after its also every small business in this state, if you understand how closely held corporations work, we’re going after every mom and pop operation in the state. That is not going to create jobs. We’ve got a look at a new way of doing business in this state that’s the old way. We’ve got a look at redesigning government getting rid of all the bloat and the excess and let’s start to look at creating a business environment that not only allows our existing economic engines to grow and thrive but attracts new and …

Tom Horner:Let’s talk about redesign.

Mark Dayton: May I please respond about the small businesses?

Tom Horner: Just a second, let me get a word in edgewise here.

Cathy Wurzer: Tom you’re first and then the Senator. Go ahead.

Tom Horner: If redesign is… take health care for example. One of you says we ought to have government run health care. The other says on don’t worry will just put everybody in charity care. Both of you are wrong. Both of you have proposals that just aren’t in the best interests of Minnesota and more importantly as we’re hearing tonight neither of you is going to get the other side to work with you. Again, four more years of this and Minnesota is is in an even worse situation

Cathy Wurzer: Senator.

Mark Dayton: Sometime, maybe beyond the PR soundbyte we’ll hear from you what you think is the right approach to health care and I’ll be interested to hear that. But going back to what I was saying before about small businesses, The Minnesota Department of Revenue estimates there are about 8 to 10 percent of the small businesses in the state who will be affected on that proposal which again just for the record is a taxable income of a hundred and thirty thousand dollars individual and taxable income of 150 for a couple filing jointly.

Uh you know if a small business owner…more power to them…is taken out of their business at the end of the year, five-hundred thousand dollars of income or more, then I think they can afford to pay a little more in taxes.

But Representative Emmer, the average mom-and-pop stores, as you describe it, is not taking a hundred fifty thousand dollars a year out of their business. They’re making thirty or fifty or seventy or eighty thousand dollars after they go through… and they’re paying higher property taxes because you and Governor Pawlenty have cut local government aid. You want to eliminate local government aid, that’s going to rise property taxes…

Tom Emmer: Oh, that’s not true. That’s not true.

Mark Dayton: It’s right in your Politics in Minnesota bio.

Tom Emmer: You know what we’re talking about.

Mark Dayton: You put it in there. When you say you want to eliminate local government aid, that says to me you want to eliminate local government aid.

Tom Emmer: Senator, Senator. I’ve got to correct something because you’re talking about the average small business. I’ve been running one. I would with all due respect suggest that maybe we ought to trade places because I understand what it’s like to have to meet a payroll in a small business. And if you’re going to talk about everybody taking home five hundred thousand dollars. There’s a lot of people when you talk about putting the top ten percent in Minnesota all the way down to a hundred thirty thousand dollars or a hundred and fifty jointly…that that isn’t…that is middle class Minnesota and that is not the right answer that’s the same answer that’s been offered in for decades in the state. We just need to tax the hard-working men and women in the state and their businesses more. And now we’re talking about this same politics as usual. We’re going to spread out the tax base as well. You know what whenever we point… politicians point at taxing one or one class of people they end up taxing everybody in those ways.

Tom Horner: Representative Emmer, in all fairness you haven’t given us any answers you’ve been in the legislature for six years we haven’t had any new policies we haven’t had any redesign. We’ve had more of the status quo. We’ve had schools going to four-day weeks. We’re going to have a rural hospitals closing down. We have Brainerd having to shut off some of its street lights directly as a result of policies that came out of your legislature.

Mark Dayton: What we’re selling here…

Tom Emmer: We’re talking about that.
Mark Dayton…on the other side of the coin and since Representative Emmer doesn’t want to raise any taxes, is where is this six billion dollars in cuts going to come from. And you know as Mister Horner said you’ve been in the legislature all these years under Governor Pawlenty, a conservative republican Governor, and you know you’re basically saying there’s six billion dollars of waste in excess in his operating budget, that you can identify and remove and no one is going to notice the difference.

Tom Emmer: Senator, Senator

Mark Dayton: Please

Tom Emmer: We’ve gotta tell the people who are listening, Senator, we gotta tell people who are listening that revenues are going up

Mark Dayton: Let me finish. No.

Tom Emmer: Why is it that a politician always talks about cuts when revenues are going up? Because government doesn’t get to spend what it was gonna spend?

Mark Dayton: Because revenues were cut by eight percent in this biennium from the last

Tom Emmer: Because why? Because of the unallotments?

Mark Dayton: Because of the cuts that were made

Tom Emmer: Right. And they were approved by the Democrats in the legislature

Mark Dayton: Okay – may I just say –

Cathy Wurzer: Hang on. One at a time.

Mark Dayton: Okay. Let me just finish.

Tom Emmer: Okay. Absolutely.

Mark Dayton: So where is the six billion in cuts? Tell us where the six billion dollars in cuts will come from.

Tom Emmer: I tell you what. Senator, I been telling you, we’ve been giving you a plan,

Mark Dayton: Tell us. No, they don’t even add up to a billion. Sir, they don’t add up to a billion.

Tom Emmer: Sir, sir, here’s what you want to do.

Cathy Wurzer: One at a time.

Tom Emmer: The only idea you have ever offered

Mark Dayton: No, I’m asking you for your ideas

Cathy Wurzer: Representative –

Tom Emmer: and this has been for 28 years that you’ve been running in this state, the only answer is to raise taxes, and we’re talking about taking the bloat out. We’ve talked about why do you need a Department of Public Safety and a Department of Corrections. Why do you need a Department of Health and a Department of Human Services. We’ve talked about why do you need a state OSHA when you’ve got a federal OSHA. We can go on and on. And why do you need to permit

Erik Eskola: But those aren’t six billion dollars worth of cuts

Tom Emmer: Absolutely not but it’s gonna be both. You gotta drive new revenue as well. All these people talk about all the Senator talks about is cutting government services that’s it. We’re not talking about cutting services we’re talking about redesigning government and then creating an economy that will drive new jobs, that will drive new revenue

Cathy Wurzer: Is your

Erik Eskola: Well let’s talk about jobs. Let’s talk. What is is  a the legitimate government role
in job creation. Senator?

Mark Dayton: Well first and foremost, education. Quality education is the key to our future prosperity. And when we rank among the state’s thirty fourth among the states in spending for K-12 education as a percent of our personal income the and we’re you know going as Mister Horner said to four-day school weeks, overcrowded classrooms, when college tuition is unaffordable for the average Minnesota family and their children, then you know we are going in the wrong direction and that’s that’s number one. And secondly is certainly, make government more efficient make it more effective. But you know you drive around on the the highways in this state, they’ve deteriorated so badly in the last twenty years and that’s what businesses need to get the people to work and goods to market it’s kind of

Erik Eskola: Government role in job creation

Tom Emmer: Well it needs to get out of the way. Let Minnesotans keep more of their resources. We’ve got to reform this overly burdensome regulatory environment so the people can start to realize their new opportunities. Eric, I met Amos and Amon Barra they’re up in Clay County Minnesota. They’re a couple of farmers they raise pigs chickens,  pigs chickens and turkeys. They wanted to expand their hog operation recently and guess what. In the state of Minnesota it would have cost them  forty thousand dollars and taken them up to two years just to get through the state permitting process, if they would have successfully garnered all the permits they needed the state level, which was no guarantee. They still had to go through the uh the county in the local level, guess what. Rather than expand their business in Minnesota by spending up to forty thousand dollars and two years of their lives, they expanded in North Dakota and they were open within six months and today that operation has a payroll of one point four million dollars. Government needs to get out of the way, streamline the regulatory process, let people realize their dream.

Mark Dayton: May I agree with Representative Emmer?

Tom Horner: Can I get a word in edgewise?

Cathy Wurzer: Go ahead Tom.

Mark Dayton: Then I’ll agree afterward.

Tom Horner: Very good. If Minnesota thanks that four years of arguing over who’s right instead of what’s right is going to create a single job the state is out of business. Let’s get serious about this. Minnesotans deserve a better discussion than this. Come on. I mean so what we need to do we ought to invest in education, but we ought to look at education as life-long from cradle to grave. We need to invest in early learning, we need to sure our two-year schools are working, our vocational/technical schools are working that they’re providing the kinds of skills that that Minnesotans need, we ought to invest in research at the University of Minnesota, create a tax climate where the good ideas can come to market in Minnesota creating Minnesota jobs, we need to invest in infrastructure roads bridges you’re absolutely right, but we also ought to invest in broadband get access we need to invest in in in our our communities. We ought to exempt from sales tax the purchase of capital equipment. Let our smaller manufacturers buy that new equipment, invest in new equipment create new jobs. We’ve gotta be real about this.

Cathy Wurzer: What  what about JOBZ? We have a program where we offer

Tom Horner: I think JOBZ is a horrible  waste of resources. It moves jobs from one part of the state to another part of the state. There are better ways to use that money to create permanent long-term jobs. Good well-paying career jobs

Cathy Wurzer: What do you think about JOBZ?

Tom Emmer: Well I think it was in the right spirit and I think a lot of people have taken advantage of it and you can’t yank the legs out from underneath people that have made major investments. So the next administration should not come in and change the rules of the ballgame overnight and put people who had made significant investments and the employees that they are that providing jobs to at risk. But at the same time you need to make all of Minnesota competitive. You gotta lower taxes you gotta  have regulatory reform so that you can start to create business all over Minnesota not just in pockets

Cathy Wurzer: Senator Dayton would you get rid of JOBZ?

Mark Dayton: I agree with Representative Emmer. I think the commitments have been made and the program ought to be used for new or expanding and manufacturing that are going to create new jobs and certainly not move from one part of the state to the other. I agree with most of what  Mister Horner said about the role in job creation. I will go back and agree with what Representative Emmer said about streamlining government bureaucracies. I would point out again in the last twenty years those government bureaucracies have been run by two republican Governor and a wrestler turned libertarian. in the Independence party. So you talk about the responsibility for these agencies’ failures, and they are failures,  I would agree with Representative Emmer. I can recount the failures of the Minnesota Pollution Cooperation Agency I call it and the bureaucracy that’s been ineffective. We had a report recently on lakes. I mean the whole requirement was that there be a plan. Not that there be results in cleaning up our lakes but just simply that there be a plan. So there’s a lot we can do and we should do and I’d work in a very bipartisan way. But bad government, Representative Emmer, bad government been a function of eight years of Governor Pawlenty

Tom Emmer: Wow, you know that’s a that’s a that’s a pretty strong statement we look at who’s been in charge of the legislature the last five. And I think Minnesotans are sick and tired of the finger-pointing and the assessing blame. I mean you talk about being in favor of this stuff that you were in the senate for six years and I don’t know that you ever advanced anything that would streamlined regulation or reduced bureaucracies. You know I’m a guy that comes from Delano that was running a business and raise a family that that hasn’t made this my career. And I look at it from the outside first and not from the inside. Nothing has changed year after year. It’s as if government just keeps growing. And every time it runs out of money we’ve got politicians who come in and say “you got to give it more.” We got people who are serving it or who are making their living off of it who suggest that it just means more revenue.

Tom Horner: You know, I’m just gonna tell ya. if there were a JetBlue flight attendant watching this he’d say “you guys are nuts, I’m out of here ,” grabbing a beer and going I mean-  the bickering’s gotta stop. How can you guys possibly work together How are you going to get anything done? How are we going to move the state forward

Mark Dayton: Mr. Horner, I actually think we’re actually having  a good honest discussion

Tom Horner: Senator, Senator, I’m going to guess you’re the only one who believes that

Mark Dayton: People can judge for themselves. But I invite you then to engage. Let’s go back to the health care since you were critical of both of our proposals

Tom Horner: absolutely

Mark Dayton: So what are you going to do to reform health care and

Tom Horner: I think we’ve got to change the expectations of everybody as it applies to health care

Mark Dayton: What does that mean? All these words,

Tom Horner: Absolutely –

Mark Dayton: these PR phrases, what are the expectations of people

Tom Horner: Senator I know you like to minimize public relations. But let’s remember that I created jobs for many many people. I met a payroll I understand what it takes to create a job for the last twenty years I’ve been building a very very successful business while you’ve had either been in a job that you said you were a failure at or running for other offices. So I’m proud that that I was in the public relations profession creating jobs, doing something positive for Minnesota, bringing people together creating the kinds of coalition including

Mark Dayton: Is that your health care proposal?

Tom Horner: No.

Mark Dayton: Well that’s what I’m waiting for.

Tom Horner: Thanks Senator. No, the health care proposal is we need to make sure that that we are coordinating care for people. We have five percent of the people consuming fifty percent of the cost. We can invest in technology, that’s one of the spending additions that we have to make, we do have to invest in technology. Make sure that that we’re providing those people with quality care, but that we’re keeping them out of hospitals, we’re managing the care. We ought to make sure we’re investing in prevention, that we’re getting up to the front end of the  health care issues, again reduce the cost by getting it early on.

Mark Dayton: Again, five percent of the people are consuming fifty percent of the cost because they’re old and sick.

Tom Horner:That’s not always, Senator that’s not always the case

Mark Dayton: Can I finish please? eventy five percent of their health care costs are incurred by people last year of her life. Like my mother was terminally ill , had an enormous amount of health care to pay and ended up in a hospice. I mean that that’s the reality of what’s driving this

Tom Horner: Senator that’s not the reality of it. There’s a great program with  Mayo in the programs where they insure.  They’re using technology now for eighty- and ninety-year-old people who have chronic conditions. Every day they check-in they’ve created a computer touch screen, they do all of the diagnostics, they have face-to-face interaction, they’re saving enormous amounts of money by keeping those people out of the hospital

Mark Dayton: I totally agree with you. The Mayo is a fabulous  operator and and that they would take over the health care system for our state and for our country and run it as that kind of model we would definitely see an improvement in health care

Erik Eskola: Here’s a question. Just a short answer. Are you for the medical use of marijuana. Legalizing it.

Mark Dayton: No.

Erik Eskola: No.

Tom Emmer: In pill form it’s fine. Yeah.

Tom Horner: I think there’s some of the things that New Jersey is going where they’re going to administer through hospitals that maybe make sense, but it’s not a priority.

Cathy Wurzer: So you’d  -

Mark Dayton: Let me qualify my answer. I told the Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Association when I got their endorsement but I would not support anything that they were opposed to. If we could find something that is acceptable, that relieves pain when there’s no other alternative and where it’s not going to result in the kinds of abuses we’ve seen in the state of California, then I would support that.

Cathy Wurzer: And you’re for it in pill form

Tom Emmer: Dosed like a medicine would be dosed as opposed to being able to grow your own plants and process them

And that’s some of the things that New Jersey

Cathy Wurzer: OK. It was a yes or no kind of a thing

Tom Horner: New Jersey is looking into some of those innovative approaches

Cathy Wurzer: If you become Governor I bet you’re going to run into this issue.  In California they have legislatively mandated nurse to patients staffing ratios the Minnesota Nurses Association says they’re going to bring it up this session. Yes or no. Would you go for nurse mandated patient/staffing ratios.

Tom Horner: No. Because it builds in additional costs to the hospitals.

Tom Emmer: I think that’s up to our hospitals. That’s not something we should be micromanaging

Cathy Wurzer: Senator Dayton

Mark Dayton: I’d look at it with the health care community in the next session and see where it’s appropriate. I support the nurses goal to  provide care.  One of my young interns unfortunately  spent the last week in intensive care at Regions Hospital. And it’s the nurses that are there around the clock and I would rely on nurses for what the need to provide quality care.

Erik Eskola: How about about rolling back the fourteenth amendment that would require the children of illegal immigrants are not automatically citizens

Mark Dayton: No.

Tom Emmer: No. Let’s stick on things that we can do. That’s not an issue that’s not going to come up

Tom Horner: I would have- I philosophically oppose it but I agree it’s not going to be an issue that the state’s going to deal with

Erik Eskola: Very good. Cathy Wurzer: Good.

Erik Eskola: We’re going to take a quick break for a few moments and Mary Lahammer will tell you about an election year project she’s been working on. We’ll be back with  some more questions after this

ML:  We wanted to make the candidates for Governor prove their budget priorities and have a little fun along the way. So with all of the hockey connections in this race we came up with our Budget Slap Shot. Where the candidates had to divvy up one hundred hockey pucks on our homemade ice rink. But what they didn’t see coming was our budget balancing twist: when they had to deal with the deficit

ML: Welcome to Budget Slap Shot

Tom Horner: Laughs

Tom Emmer: All this trouble you got

Mark Dayton: I’m a hockey player, a hockey dad, and a hockey coach

ML: We have one hundred pucks. I want you to account for ten hockey pucks. So
you either have to remove ten hockey pucks or over here is your revenue bucket.

Tom Horner: Yeah…Right.

Mark Dayton: ten percent out of this. By default  I’m looking to raise taxes on the wealthiest people in Minnesota. And then federal money would then come from issuing highway construction bonds.

ML: We’ve been allowing corporate loopholes

Mark Dayton: Corporate loopholes aren’t taxed.  And if we don’t then you’re going to have to take more money away from education and you’re going to have to take more money away from K-12 and you’re going to have to take more money away from  public safety, part of the environment, so the trade-off is either we put more resources into the rink the arena or  we take more resources out

Tom Horner: This is moving pucks around, this isn’t moving people around. So.

ML: Sales tax.

Tom Horner: We can lower the rate, broaden the base, not the liquor tax but the cigarette tax

ML: Cigarette tax

Tom Horner: Take a Medicaid option, we’ll call that a federal dollar because it’s not technically income tax they’re not really corporate tax, we can take one of each

ML: Okay. Yeah.

Tom Horner: and and say that it’s kind of a mix. I think we ought to take a look at gambling racino. Well all right we may leave open the option that we’ll have to create some fees

Tom Emmer: It’s we that quit talking about new revenue sources all the time. You could take four right here right now if you don’t opt in to medical assistance

ML: The fact that we are missing six pucks could be a whistle offense

Tom Emmer: Here I – (laughs)

ML: I want you to balance the budget

Tom Emmer: And you will see me balance the budget

ML: I understand.

Tom Emmer: I think you’re gonna find efficiencies in local government aid if you redesign the program. I think you can find it in state government. I think you can find it in health and human services. I think you could find it in economic development. I think I’ve done it. I think I’ve done it. I mean – I would absolutely she did it by the way do you see this? She finally twisted me and she’s going to get me to take these off of where we have to take them in this area.

ML: Here’s a look at how the candidates balanced their budgets with cuts and revenue and a look at their spending priorities side by side. Much more on our web site

Erik Eskola: We’re back for more conversation. Senator Dayton you picked up the endorsement of Education Minnesota, the teachers union. Now does this mean that you will be resistant to some of the reforms that the union has been opposing? The changes in tenure an alternative license your for teachers making it easier to would terminate underperforming teachers? Where are you on some of these education reforms that President Obama and Secretary of Education Duncan have been talking about?

Mark Dayton: Well first I think education reform in Minnesota is restoring the cuts in funding for each student which has been the thirteen hundred dollars per pupil in real after inflation dollars over the last eight years. I want to get rid of bad teachers and bad principals. I proposed back when I was state auditor you know if we had a way in which teachers could take their their pensions, their health care benefits, and and take those portability to go to local governments or other places within the public sector where they can have a future career, provide for their families and counsel them out of teaching.  You know I taught in New York for two years, And I saw a lot of teachers who were incredibly dedicated and hard-working, I saw some frankly who were just  frustrated but didn’t have anywhere to go. You know I was down in Rochester just this last week and here is a young woman is now been laid off for the third time in her four-year career so she doesn’t acquire the seniority anywhere. And she says “I’m applying for a job now  as a social studies teacher, there are two to three hundred applicants for every position.” So I I’m concerned about our being able to give young people who want to make a career out of teaching an opportunity to do so.

Cathy Wurzer: Say where would you buck education Minnesota if you’re Governor

Tom Horner: Well I think it’s in the whole redesign of how we approach education.  I think we have to put more money into early learning so that every student comes in prepared for success. I think we ought to turn over the schools to teachers, not to Education Minnesota but to teachers, set the state standards, and then allow them to decide what’s the best for this group of of thirty students. And we certainly need to invest in principals. Not just moving them through academic certification but real training, residency , mentoring,  and then let them run the schools. I think what we have to look at things like how do we some move around tenure so that we have the best teachers not just the oldest teachers. How do we make sure that in our high schools we have teachers who are capable of teaching the sciences and other technical kinds of of information. But mostly we just have to have a system in which we can figure out how we have students coming out of high school ready for whatever the next step of life is.

Erik Eskola: Changes in the system

Tom Emmer: Oh yeah absolutely. And I’m just listening – I I will tell you that that it’s interesting to me that we want to protect the system. It sounds like as usual there are  great reforms that have been proposed in President Obama’s Race to the Top: alternative teacher licensure, performance pay, nowhere else in our society does somebody get to keep their job just because they’ve been there the longest. It’s based on if you’re producing and we should do that and accountability within school. I think you gotta look at the whole system. We got great teachers. We want to provide our kids with not only as good in education as all of us have, and I don’t think we’re doing that right now. We want to provide them with a better education. It’s about choices and where we’re puttin our resources. And if we’re in office what we’re going to do is work with parents and teachers and we’re not going to be necessarily out working that with I expect the union leaders because they seem to be about protecting turf as opposed to looking at real reform in our schools. And I just named three of them that they opposed the last legislative session

Cathy Wurzer: In an  Emmer administration with education funding be held harmless

Tom Emmer: Yeah, and it has been. I mean we hear this from the Senator all the time about how it hasn’t his own that opponents in the endorsement race called him to  task on this last week. Margaret Kelliher did among others. Under a republican House and Governor the actual per pupil amount funding went up more than it did when that the Democrats were in charge. But again this shouldn’t be about Democrat Republican. It should be about what’s right for the future the state of Minnesota. All right we need to make sure that it’s not about taking spending away. It’s just that we are funding our priorities in getting the production that we expect

Cathy Wurzer: And you would fund, help me out here Senator, you would fund education, you would pay back that shift that occurred, is that correct?

Mark Dayton: I would, that would be my objective because that’s money that has been taken away by the legislature and the Governor from the school districts. And it’s certainly a euphemism, shift. You know if I reach my hand into somebody’s pocket and take out their wallet and say “I’m gonna give it back to you when I feel like it,” we don’t call it a shift in the real world. Now I did notice, Representative Emmer, despite what you just said, and in  Mary Lahammer’s analysis there, and you reduce the spending for education for its current level of forty three percent down to the thirty percent. That’s a big cut in state funding for K-12 education.

Tom Emmer: I think you read it wrong it was based on what was there. And I didn’t I didn’t do the uh that cornucopia of new revenues that you were grabbin

Mark Dayton: I’m going by what was put on the screen

Tom Emmer: Sir, my new revenues, if we’re gonna do this, what we would create under the scenarios that we envision for the future the state is having new business, new jobs generating more revenue which ultimately is what’s going to drive what you expect.

Mark Dayton: Let’s talk about job creation there. Because I couldn’t agree with you more.
That’s the goal for this state and for this nation. The reality is however that you know is that our job creation has gone down and as in last year’s again under Governor Pawlenty we rank in the bottom ten states in the nation in employment growth. Even the state economic forecast, the independent firm, said this is a historic shift from Minnesota. To go from one of the leading states in the nation
in employment growth and job creation to be one of the poorest.

Tom Emmer: I need to address this because here’s the thing.  You keep talking as though it was Governor pawlenty who controlled all of this. He did a great job and he’s described himself as a goalie. Now I’m not Governor Pawlenty and I didn’t agree with him on everything that he did, but to make it sound as though it that’s the reason the job growth hasn’t been coming to the state of Minnesota completely ignores reality. Reality in this state is we have too much government. When government is the number one growth sector in your economy you are not destined for success. We’ve got jobs teed up in the queue in northern Minnesota all over northern Minnesota PolyMet has already gone through five years of environmental
accounting and you’re suggesting they should go through another through two years

Mark Dayton: On the contrary

Tom Emmer: You have and we’ve got well thousands of jobs that are ready to go. We all want clean air and water

Erik Eskola: But you do want power and water. Real quick.

Mark Dayton: The reason I got endorsed by the Mesabi Daily News which is the newspaper covering that area is because they said their criteria was jobs jobs and jobs. And they said I would be the best candidate for the primary in terms of job creation. I have two terms’ experience creating jobs in Minnesota and if you wanna to go up to where the state has failed go up and talk to DigiKey in Thief River Falls

Tom Emmer: But see you don’t create ‘em people create jobs

Mark Dayton: Please let me finish

Erik Eskola: Time out!

Mark Dayton: DigiKey wants to add 900 jobs if they could get the infrastructure permits to go along with it

Cathy Wurzer: I want to ask Tom Horner about actually Polymet and copper nickel mining in northeastern Minnesota which is gonna be a huge issue

Tom Emmer: Of course, it is already a huge issue and -

Cathy Wurzer: And so what do you do with the environmental concerns around that and the job creation

Tom Emmer: Minnesota has the the most stringent environmental review process of any state in the country. A lot of people would argue that maybe it is too long, too stringent, but I don’t think anybody can argue that it is not thorough. Polymet already has been through five years of hundred million dollars and will go through more to prove that it can do the the mining without harm to the the environment. You know we need to make those investments in economic uses of our natural resources that include mining, tourism, forestry, agriculture and then make sure that they’re doing it in a way that protects the environment.

Cathy Wurzer: Let’s talk about gambling for just a moment here. I’m gonna switch topics on you completely

Tom Emmer: Seven years waiting for jobs in northern Minnesota is inexcusable. It’s become a sword as opposed to a resource

Tom Horner: Oh, I’m not the one that made them wait seven years, Representative Emmer

Tom Emmer: We’ve gotta make sure that this thing that works because we all want clean air and water. But we got people up in northern Minnesota that are suffering. hey can’t pay the mortgage they can’t put food on the table. They can’t put clothes on their kids.

Tom Horner: And again, if anybody thinks those issues that are going to be resolved by listening to four more years of the fighting that created the problems then I think they get what they vote for

Mark Dayton: You’ve got a well rehearsed line, “And now we’re gonna have eighty one more days,” is this a refrain?  Is that what it’s like? Why don’t we just

Tom Horner: If we’re going to have eighty one more days of this discussion we might.

Mark Dayton: Why don’t we just tape it  and then you can just play it on cue in that way. If you want to engage us in your alternative

Tom Horner: Senator I’ve offered several

Mark Dayton: let’s talk about let’s talk about let’s go back and talk about extending the sales tax to working families and see what that’s going to do to

Tom Horner: Absolutely let’ s talk about that

Cathy Wurzer: Actually, I want to talk about gambling. (Cross talk) Cathy Wurzer: I want to talk about gambling, actually. I want to ask Tom Emmer here and I want to hear from all of you because you also included gambling in your budget proposal.

Tom Horner: Yes.

Cathy Wurzer: Do you see gambling as a partial fix to the state’s budget problems?

Tom Emmer: No I don’t

Cathy Wurzer: Okay. Do you would would you agree to expand gambling to other areas though?

Tom Emmer: Oh I don’t know that – I mean here’s the problem. I got to go to your first question. Government right now is gasping gasping for any revenue stream it could find. that’s why people talk about expanding the the tax base, the sales tax base. we
talk about raising taxes on middle class families that are earning a hundred and thirty thousand two hundred and fifty thousand dollars a year. Grabbing any increase it could possibly find instead of taking the opportunity that we all have right now.  It’s the best opportunity we have ever had to look at the actual delivery system for the services we expect out of government.

Erik Eskola: Do you support expanding gambling for any reason ?

Tom Emmer: The problem with talking about expanding gambling right now is that the professional politicians the career politicians all look at it is another way to solve the problem that they’re not willing to address, which is redesigning government,
creating a business friendly environment .

Cathy Wurzer: Would you reopen the Indian gaming compacts at all?

Tom Emmer: I that takes two parties. Have you looked at the compacts? ‘Cause I’ve read ‘em.

Cathy Wurzer: I have actually

Tom Emmer: It takes two parties and you gotta have two willing parties, so I guess that’s up to the tribes

Erik Eskola: Senator do you have a casino proposal

Mark Dayton: Yes I would consider one state-owned/operated casino at the Mall of America or the airport  to give Mystic Lake some much-needed competition and that benefits those who want to enjoy gaming. I’ve found that competition is good for retailing it’s good for politicians and it should be good for that as well and so to have a government-protected monopoly there I think it is improper.

Cathy Wurzer: And you’d have to open the Indian gaming compacts to do that

Mark Dayton: No you would not. No you would not. Under a general agreement that would not be necessary and then as Representative Emmer said properly you can open the compacts unilaterally. 39.32: can or can’t?

Tom Horner: You know this is a desperate grasp for any revenue stream, Representative Emmer.
this is a desperate grasp to say to all of those Minnesotans who are out of jobs,
all of those Minnesotans who see their communities fading, all of those Minnesota’s
who see their schools going to four-day weeks, to say  “Look, we need to figure out common sense solutions that make sense. And that reality is, as much as you two want to deny it,  it is not going to be simple single note kinds of answers. It is going to take reform and I propose real reform. Every time we hear reform you said I’ve put proposals out. The only proposals we’ve seen are from nineteen ninety eight and we haven’t seen anything new in twenty ten. We have a new economy, we have a new kind of of global marketplace that we need to respond. So  I have put specific proposals out there and yes, I think that looking at racino, at Canterbury, at Running Aces does make some sense.  Not because we need a desperate grab for new revenue, but we need common sense solutions that are going to allow us to invest in the future, that are going to allow us to create opportunity to become the knowledge state, to do the kinds of things that Minnesota needs to be to grow

Cathy Wurzer: You were a sponsor a co-sponsor of racino in 2009, isn’t that right?

Tom Emmer: That’s true I’ve been that I’ve done that. The problem I told you right now and I think if it’s offered for some other reason other than grasping at revenue because with all due respect this is what politicians do rather than address the glut we have in government. The extra departments, the overlapping services rather than addressing the actual structure.  And by the way the idea that people that are working in government are making substantially more than people outside of government which are being asked to pay for it. Rather than addressing the issues of the delivery service, they just look for another revenue stream. It’s time to change it

Erik Eskola: Vikings stadium

Tom Horner: I’ve put out the most thoughtful proposal. When the issue came up at the DFL debate last week and and it was addressed as “how do you respond Horner’s proposal?” because it’s good proposal. It’s a proposal that that reflects the kind
of leadership I bring where I sat down with the Vikings, with taxpayers, with user groups and said “what’s going to work?” And so what works is ask the Vikings to pay
a little bit more than other communities have asked of their NFL team.  I want the Vikings to pay forty percent. I want them to sign a forty year lease.  But secondly , most importantly, we ought to put the burden on those who are going to use the stadium. So a tax on all of the tickets. The Vikings get the revenue from Vikings events,  the public gets the revenue for all of the other events, and all of the revenue: concessions,  in-stadium advertising, suites, those kinds of things that that will provide the revenue for a stadium, for operating costs, without affecting the core essential services. What we heard last week when the question came up was “Well I’m a big fan of the Vikings,” and then somebody really went out on a limb and said “I’m a big fan and I really hope Brett Favre comes back.” We need to have some specific proposals. Put it on the table.

Mark Dayton: Well they’re not a client of mine a and so I’ve spent less time

Tom Horner: Oh, Senator! Really? Really? Really Senator?

Mark Dayton: May I finish?

Tom Horner: No you may not. Because lookit, Senator, I have worked for twenty years to build a good business, all the while

Mark Dayton: Good for you.

Tom Horner: Well it is good for me. Because it’s also good for Minnesota, Senator. It’s also good for all of the jobs. Senator, it’s also good for all of the jobs that I’ve created in Minneosta, all of the people who, that have worked for me when they had to take care of a frail parent, we figured out how to make that work. When they had to take care of newborns we figured out how to make that work. When they wanted to get involved in the community, we figured out how to make that work.

(Mark Dayton and Cathy Wurzer Cross talk)

Tom Horner: The Vikings have been a client, Senator, Senator, no, may I finish? May I finish, Senator?

Cathy Wurzer: Just quickly.

Tom Horner: So. Because you keep coming back to this Senator,

Mark Dayton: He asked a question. He asked a question.

Tom Horner: so let me answer it directly. You keep asking about conflicts of interest in my clients. I don’t have any clients Senator because I knew that politicians like you would bring it up and try to make an issue out of it,  and so I sold my business. I have no clients. I have no business. I put myself to a higher standard than we ask of incumbent office holders. We don’t ask incumbent office holders, you don’t ask Representative Emmer to disclose his clients, you don’t ask of yourself to disclose the investments you have in your trust fund, what I did was sold my business. I don’t have any conflicts because I don’t have any clients, Senator.

Mark Dayton: Can I go back to my answer? Can I have a chance to make my answer now? OK, good. What I said was, since you were disparaging the fact that the the that I and other DFLers hadn’t spent time interacting with the Vikings I was stating a fact that you spent a lot of time with them because they’re a former client. I didn’t say there was anything wrong with that. I was just pointing out that you have a lot more detail. I’ve ever met with Mister Wulf. I don’t know what their proposal is and in the specifics that you do and so I stand by what I said before. I go, I come from my background which is twice commissioner of economic development for the state that I’ll look at the project like any other. If it’s a good deal for the people of Minnesota, if  it creates more jobs, and does provide more revenues, income for the the state that is greater than the cost, then I’ll support it I would not support general fund revenues but you know if you if you want me to explain why it is that I don’t have the specific knowledge of what the Vikings will or will not do, it’s for the simple reason that I don’t have a client relationship has been in the past to base my information on.

Cathy Wurzer: Should the state jump in and help the Vikings build a stadium

Tom Emmer: Well and I want a stadium. I’d love to see a stadium but I don’t think you do it with state taxpayer money. I think what you do as the Governor of the state of Minnesota is you work with the Vikings just like you want to work with every other business in this state whether they’re 3M or Marvin Windows or Medtronic You want to make Minnesota place where they could succeed and thrive and the Vikings are one of those. One of the things we could absolutely do is connect, facilitate local authorities. There was a proposal in the legislature this year with Hennepin County and the Vikings that showed some promise. You connect those parties and you allow them to follow the process through. And  as long as it’s uh by law you get something done

Cathy Wurzer: Hey I have to ask you guys this. This has come up on the campaign and we’re just gonna get it out here and talk about it. Both Senator Dayton and Representative Emmer have had a history of alcohol-related ah situations.  You made, both gentlemen have done pre-emptive strikes before this situation. You have had two alcohol-related driving convictions and Senator you are a recovering alcoholic. So my question to both of you is,   since you’re a, you’ve had a relapse, you’ve talked about it early on in the campaign, what did you learn the first time? What have you been doing to kind of deal with your problem?

Mark Dayton: Well as anyone who’s a recovering alcoholic knows it’s  one day at a time. And that I’m human and fallible. And I learned if I go back to Hazelden  as I did for a week at their Renewal Center, a fabulous place  in January of 2007, and I re-established my program, which is a spiritual program, which is a physical program, and that I can continue to (unclear) my sobriety and I feel healthier and stronger than I had before. And I commend Representative Emmer who said that he learned from his past experiences in that regard as well.

Cathy Wurzer: Because there’s this ad out it’s pretty tough on that

Tom Emmer: You know Cathy first off a I had I made a mistake twenty years ago. You got my wife my kids are here in the audience. You talk about a preemptive strike, I never had a preemptive strike. This is not something that I’ve ever been that afraid to talk about. I made a mistake. I learned from my mistake twenty years ago. And you know the uh the ad that you’re talking about with uh the lady that’s talking about her tragedy in her son. My heart goes out to her and it is not only a tragedy because of that experience but I think it’s also why it really is a tragedy when people use that tragedy for a political gain. I think it’s wrong. But I will tell you this. If that ad will convince one person not to drive after drinking, then run it as much as you can. Okay.

Erik Eskola: Are you as erratic as the Republican ad says about you?

Mark Dayton: I’m human. But I don’t consider myself erratic. I mean I consider myself a dedicated career of 35 years of public service. And I’m proud of my record. I’m proud of the consistency of my record on behalf of the people in Minnesota. I think  that’s why I won the DFL primary. I think more people voted for me than anybody else in any of the three contests because they know that I’ve got a proven commitment to the state of Minnesota. I’m not perfect and I’ve acknowledged that. That I believe that my record in totality is one of consistent support for people in Minnesota for standing up for what I believe is right, standing up for things like voting against the Iraq war resolution, whether it was popular or not.

Erik Eskola: What about these issues that are coming up, not strictly on the table, policy-type issues?

Tom Horner: I’m not sure I understand what you mean

Erik Eskola: Well the,  closing the Senate office or two drunk driving–related…

Tom Horner: Oh you know we all bring a resume to this job. And I think our resumes speak for ourselves. I mean, I appreciate that that Senator Dayton wants to make an issue out of clients that no longer exist. But the reality is, I don’t have great personal wealth, I can’t fund my own campaign, I did have to work for a living I was very fortunate that the business I created was very successful, created jobs for other people. I understand what it takes to meet a payroll. I understand what it takes to create a job. I understand what it takes to work with employees some of whom have had to go through some of these difficult kinds of situations. And as an employer I figured out how to work with them. I think that’s the resume that I bring to Minnesota.  That’s what I’m offering, I think what Minnesotans are looking for is somebody who has that kind of business leadership experience

Cathy Wurzer: I got an email today from an individual who wants me to ask you this question. It’s from a group that wants to have a state constitutional amendment to prohibit same-sex marriage. Would you sign something like that, would you allow voters  to take up the issue of same-sex marriage in Minnesota? As a constitutional amendment to the state constitution.

Tom Horner: Right. Well, of course it goes past the Governor. I mean the legislature proposes a constitutional amendment and it goes –

Cathy Wurzer: What do you think of it?

Tom Horner: I’m for equality so I would oppose a constitutional amendment I would have I think we need to move to equality.

Cathy Wurzer Okay. Representative Emmer.

Tom Emmer: As a citizen I a view that is well known. As  a  Governor it’s not going to be up to the Governor. Whether it’s somebody says they have to oppose it.  It’s not up to the Governor it’s up to the legislature. And you know what

Cathy Wurzer: Should folks vote?

Tom Emmer: This election is not about those issues. This election is about the economy and it’s about time that

Cathy Wurzer: But there’s a lot of issues in a campaign

Tom Emmer: No, Cathy, people are trying to distract us from what we have to do

Cathy Wurzer: And we spent a full hour talking about the economy,

Tom Emmer: Well, it’s not about those issues, it’s about jobs

Cathy Wurzer: that’s true so would you let voters, would you let voters, do you think voters should vote on a constitutional amendment prohibiting same sex marriage?

Tom Emmer: That would be up to the legislature

Tom Horner: But just let me just jump back in. Because I agree with Representative Emmer I think we do need to focus on jobs

Cathy Wurzer: And we have

Tom Horner  And I think we do need to focus on the economy and we have. But I’ll also say that part of our economy, part of creating jobs is being a state in which people can thrive, in which people are healthy in which the the the best talent has attracted here. So I think part of leadership, and I really think that that’s the critical issue in twenty ten, is leadership. Who has the vision, who has the temperament, who has the ability to build consensus around some of these difficult issues. So simply to say that equality isn’t an issue that as Governor we we’re gonna have to deal with, I think that’s wrong. I think we do need to deal with equality as part of having a healthy strong economically viable state

Erik Eskola: Where do you stand Senator

Mark Dayton: I think we do deal with it  because as you say a lot of people care about it. And it is about leadership and the Governor’s leadership and the Governor certainly influences the legislature even if he doesn’t have a final vote on the matter. I believe  the founding principles of this country is that we’re all created equal , we are endowed by our creator with certain unalienable rights. Among those are life liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And that certainly ought to be in this America today, the right to marry legally the person that a person loves.

Erik Eskola: Any changes in gun laws under your administration?

Mark Dayton: No

Tom Emmer: I would veto any attempt to restrict any of the laws right now as applied to guns

Tom Horner: No changes

Erik Eskola: And the moratorium on negative ads

Mark Dayton: I suggested it. I think on personal attacks. You know, tonight makes clear we have some very real differences among us and we ought to focus on those

Tom Emmer: I appreciate that and as I said yesterday we have run a positive campaign. Jacquie are committed to doing that. And I take Senator Dayton at his word. I assume he’s sincere and I hope that he encourages his allies special interest allies in his family members perhaps to look at some of these ads they’ve been running that are very  –

Tom Horner: Well, and I have made an absolute commitment to no negative ads. I would encourage both of you to encourage your allies to stop the ads. But more than that we need a discussion. It’s not just about the absence of negative ads, it’s about the discussion of the issues that we need to bring Minnesota to make it a better state to make it a stronger state

Cathy Wurzer: Gentlemen,  good discussion

Erik Eskola:  Thanks men

Cathy Wurzer: Thank you, appreciate it. The hour has obviously flown right by. If you’ve missed any part of this program you can hop on line for rebroadcast information. And to learn more about the slap shot budget exercise that you saw. It’s all at   Thanks for watching we’ll see you here again next week


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