Minn. GOP biggest user of tax break Pawlenty axedby Tim Pugmire, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — There's more evidence that Minnesota Republicans were hit hardest by the recent elimination of a state tax refund for political contributions.
Gov. Tim Pawlenty ended the tax refund earlier this year as part of his unilateral cuts to balance the state budget. Before the program ended, Minnesotans who donated to a political party or a candidate for state office were eligible to receive a tax refund of up to $50 for individual filers and $100 for couples.
A new report from the campaign finance board says the state Republican Party earned $2.9 million from the program in 2008, compared to $1.1 million for the DFL.
Overall, nearly 64,000 donors gave$ 4 million to four political parties that year. The GOP was also the top recipient in 2007.
Political parties and candidates pushed their supporters hard before the July 1st cut off to take advantage of the refund, but 2009 data wasn't included in this year's report.