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Letter: Persell urged to ignore party, heed his constituents

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A little-known rule requires our state legislators in St. Paul to have a 60-percent majority in order to borrow money on the state's credit card. The reason we require this "super majority" is because borrowing money is always a risky proposition, as we've unfortunately learned the hard way at the start of this economic meltdown. Putting this common-sense rule on the state's credit card is a fiscally responsible move.

Like a growing number of people, I support requiring that same 60-percent super majority for legislators to raise taxes. Our reasoning is simple: If it's good for the credit card, it's good for the checkbook. More precisely, it's good for our checkbooks, because requiring a super majority to raise taxes would protect our wallets from money-hungry legislators who can't grasp the idea that government should tighten its belt during a recession.

Sadly, one of those legislators appears to be new Rep. John Persell. When the super majority requirement came up for a vote, he voted against it just like his party bosses did. They want to raise taxes to balance the budget (they've already said they want a $4 billion increase), and apparently so does Persell. It is unfortunate that our new representative has already abandoned the people he promised to represent and is now voting the straight party line. I am asking, on behalf of everyone struggling through this recession, for Persell to ignore his party bosses and start listening to his constituents: Support the 60-percent super majority requirement for a tax increase. We cannot afford more taxes.

Alyssa Gunstrom

Bemidji

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