The Shutdown Showdown

For once, Minnesota Dems take a hard line with Pawlenty

Later on Almanac, Johnson stated that "Democrats are going to have to swallow a pill on some kind of reform that the governor wants," and specifically mentioned performance pay for teachers. He also said that Democrats have to consider sources of revenue "that we might not necessarily like." By contrast, Pawlenty announced that all previous offers, including his "cigarette fee" proposal, were at least temporarily off the table.

So a budget deal in the near future continues to sound unlikely. But that's no reason to mourn. Nothing could be easier than to sit back and criticize the present confrontation--but sometimes gridlock is a sign that the system is actually working for once. This is a fight that has brewed for six years, and it's well worth having.

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