Gov. Mark Dayton fired back Thursday at Minnesota Republicans critical of his proposal to raise $3.3 billion in taxes, mostly on the wealthy.
 
In a conference call from Washington, D.C., where he is attending a meeting of the National Governors Association, the new DFL governor said Republicans in the Minnesota Legislature are “in some kind of denial” about property tax increases that have resulted from cuts in local government aid.
 
“They continue to be in denial over the direct impact of decisions made in St. Paul on property tax increases,” he said.
 
Dayton, asked about a letter sent by Senate Republicans Thursday opposing his budget, said the GOP lawmakers are “on very thin ice to be poking at my budget proposal.”
 
While his tax proposal would spare all but the top 5 percent income bracket, Dayton said, Republican policies would result in across-the-board property tax increases, which he called a “regressive, unfair tax on everybody.”
 
“The time for this rhetorical game playing is over,” Dayton said. “I’ve submitted by budget, and now it’s their responsibility to develop their budget. Where is their budget?”
 
Dayton released his $37 billion budget proposal a week ago -- including the tax increase he promised in his campaign. Republicans are expected to release their budget outline in coming weeks.

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