The following editorial was published in the Jan. 15 Mesabi Daily News.
Gov. Tim Pawlenty has told all Minnesotans that we must share the pain of a multi-billion-dollar budget deficit. And he is right to point out that shared sacrifice will be needed.
But the governor should also realize that shared sacrifice may have to include some compromise on his campaign promise of no tax increases.
We are pleased to see that DFL Sen. Dean Johnson of Willmar has already raised the issue of how Minnesota government intends to deal with its obvious great need for road and bridge repair.
He has proposed a six-cent increase in the state gasoline tax.
Good, let a much needed debate begin.
We are talking about a major part of the public infrastructure of the state.
And that means public funding for its maintenance. And, oh by the way, pumping money into needed road and bridge work also means jobs, which also means more revenue for the state. What a novel idea.
But the governor managed to secure his party's endorsement and nomination in large part because he signed a no tax increase pledge.
So will he and House members of the GOP support a gas tax increase that would help the state's roads and bridges and also its work force even though it runs counter to the governor's campaign promise?
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