Rep. Greg Davids, R-Preston, is calling on Governor Dayton to not "quit" on the 2011 legislative session. Davids was referencing comments Dayton made about forcing lawmakers into a special session rather than agreeing to a GOP budget plan.
Dayton and GOP legislative leaders are at odds over the best way to erase a $5 billion budget deficit. Dayton is urging the House and Senate to agree to a budget plan so they can begin negotiating the details. Republicans won't pass a budget plan because they know Dayton will veto it and will have to start from scratch. They are asking Dayton to start negotiating now.
Davids, the House Tax Chair, sent out a news release criticizing Dayton for making the special session comments.
"Governor Dayton's a good man, and he's already shown leadership on several legislative issues this year," Davids said. "But as I said in tax committee this morning: Governor, please don't quit. Please don't give up. 17 days is a lifetime, we can make this work. Please don't quit."
Davids' comments show that both sides are lining up to blame the other if Dayton and lawmakers can reach a budget agreement by May 23rd.
The only problem is Dayton isn't the only one suggesting a special session or a government shutdown. Rep. Jim Abeler, R-Anoka, told Politics in Minnesota that he expects GOP lawmakers to dig in and force a government shutdown rather than compromise on revenue.
On Wednesday, Dayton told reporters that he was ready to begin negotiating but is waiting for lawmakers to pass a complete budget.
"It takes two to negotiate," Dayton said.