Coleman’s tax cuts put more money in Minnesota’s pockets

I might be a political junkie, but how can anyone argue that this fall’s race for governor hasn’t been exciting? The contrast between the candidates is striking. You have a Democrat with a famous name preaching the old time religion of government programs, a Democrat turned Republican with a tax-cutting agenda and a former professional wrestler with an attitude straight off the top rope. I am voting for Norm Coleman tomorrow. Let me take this opportunity to invite you to join me.
Here at the University we are inclined to believe that the best candidate is the one who will “show us the money.” The conventional wisdom is that a Democrat will shower us with gifts while others will take us to the cleaners.
Taking a step back from this simplistic view, let’s look at what Norm Coleman has said. He supports the current state grant program and said he will listen to President Yudof’s budget proposal of $1.2 billion. Unlike Humphrey, Coleman does not treat us like an interest group that can be bought with a tax credit. But as far as University interests go, Norm definitely gets a passing grade.
Coleman is the mayor of St. Paul and has overseen a renaissance in the once downtrodden city. He has attracted business, jobs and has brought back professional hockey, all while keeping a lid on new taxes and maintaining a high bond rating for the city. The predominantly Democratic people of St. Paul spoke volumes about Republican Coleman, electing him to a second term by a wide margin. Contrast this with the record that Skip Humphrey has compiled.
Humphrey’s most noteworthy achievement has been the huge, recently reached settlement with the tobacco companies. While this case provided a major cash windfall to the state, it is problematic for a couple of reasons. First of all, Humphrey’s real role in the case was to smile for the cameras while the trial lawyers bore the burden of winning. But what is to stop a Humphrey administration from setting its sights on other products? Like many liberals, Skip seems to think he knows what’s best for you. Forget about your burger, beer and fries at Stub & Herb’s, your liberal baby-sitters have decided it is no longer good for you.
The most exciting candidate in the race, Jesse “The Mind” Ventura, complete with veto pen motion, would rather you ate the burger and fries to bulk up for football. He has shaken up the political landscape, but do we want a governor or a talk show host? Unlike Jesse’s idealized world, where 624-WALK isn’t the only escort service in town, there is not universal agreement on which bills would be bad for Minnesota, and thus subject to Ventura’s veto pen. Ventura’s position on higher education can be summed up: “The Mind to Students — Drop Dead!” University students may be tempted to vote for Jesse, but they do so at the peril of the institution they attend.
Norm Coleman is the only candidate who will continue the Gov. Arne Carlson’s policies (or lack thereof) that have led to the strong job market that University graduates now enjoy. He may sound like a parrot at times — (“Polly want a tax cut! Polly want a tax cut!”) — but he also understands that a strong business environment requires more than simply cutting taxes. It requires holding the door shut on suffocating new laws and regulations, something Skip cannot wait to expand. Unlike Ventura, Coleman understands the value of a college education, and would be a friend to the University.
Norm Coleman is the best choice we have for governor this year. By electing Coleman, University students and the public in general will bring to power a governor who serves their best interests, supporting education, promoting business and keeping his hands off your lunch plate. For these reasons, and for his superior record, I will vote for Norm Coleman on Tuesday.

Rob Hoblit is a Daily Editorial Board member. He welcomes comments to [email protected]