Emmer takes Almanac’s ‘Budget Slap Shot’ challenge


Tonight, we roll out Almanac’s effort to get candidates to get specific about their budget priorities.  It’s called “Budget Slap Shot” because we wanted a visual way to talk about the difficult topic of the budget and so many candidates have hockey connections.   First up is Tom Emmer a former college hockey player.  The Republican nominee for governor did detail his budget ideas by stacking hockey pucks in all the major budget areas.  He spent most of his money, 30%, in education combining k-12 and higher ed.  Next was health and human services at 22%.  The combined budget area of agriculture/veterans got 10%, by far the most of any candidate.  Transportation came in at 9%.  Emmer ranked public safety spending higher than the other DFL and IP candidates with 8%.  Local government aids and bonding debt each got 5%.  Environment and economic development each had 4%.  State government came in at 3%.  


But the tough part of the budget exercise was forcing the candidates to account for a 10% budget shortfall with 10 hockey pucks.  Emmer did not seek any revenue as a solution, the only candidate to leave our “Revenue Bucket” untouched.  After about an hour of talking and pushing and prodding, Emmer agreed to detail where his budget savings would come from announcing “she finally twisted me.”  His government redesign with us created 5% savings in health and human services, 2% from debt service, 1% economic development, 1% local aids, 1% state government.  He wanted to be careful that those “redesign savings” are not seen as cuts.  Hear Tom Emmer explain much more about how he’d balance the budget in our segment tonight on Almanac.

You can also learn about all our free newsletter options.

Comments (4)

  1. Submitted by dan buechler on 07/19/2010 - 10:03 am.

    What I was struck by most from the video is how far off Emmer was from reality. Horner did much better and was accurate. Emmer”s fantasy budget had education going from 40 to 30% of the budget, also HHS going from 30 to 20% of the budget. Correct me if I am wrong but a high school junior after taking a mn civics course could come up with more accurate figure. Tom back to primary school for you.

  2. Submitted by Bernice Vetsch on 07/19/2010 - 12:50 pm.

    Emmer really IS another Pawlenty — but apparently even worse.

    No revenue is to be raised, but the budget is to be balanced, as usual, by cuts, no matter what Emmer may choose to call them (or that right-wing spin-meisters have advised him to call them in the hope that people will say, “Wow! Emmer’s not going to make cuts”).

  3. Submitted by Richard Schulze on 07/19/2010 - 09:50 pm.

    The focus, I think, should always be on two questions: what do we want from the government and is that what we’re getting. Tom Horner will be a tough act to follow.

  4. Submitted by Hénock Gugsa on 07/20/2010 - 08:39 pm.

    Regarding “redesign savings” … is this some sort of neo-political jargon for special services made to order for specific customers (interest groups)?

    And about all those hockey pucks … I wonder what Don Rickles would say about us?

Leave a Reply