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Published May 17, 2011, 04:21 PM

MN House Debates Dayton-backed Tax Hike

The Minnesota House of Representatives has voted down Gov. Mark Dayton's proposal to raise income taxes on the state's wealthiest citizens to help solve the state's budget dilemma.

By: Associated Press,

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota House of Representatives has voted down Gov. Mark Dayton's proposal to raise income taxes on the state's wealthiest citizens to help solve the state's budget dilemma.

Floor debate stretched to more than four hours Tuesday before the House voted it down 73-60 on a vote that fell on party lines save for one Democrat who voted against the plan. Republicans who lead the House lined up against it and argued tax increases will chase job creators out of the state.

Democrats say Dayton is simply asking the state's wealthiest to contribute a little more to prevent cuts they say will fall hardest on the poor, disabled and elderly.

The debate is over the new proposal from the Democratic governor a day earlier to shrink his original income tax-hike plan by nearly half in an effort to compromise with Republicans. He'd raise rates on couples earning over $300,000 a year and individuals earning over about $180,000.

Democratic Rep. Gene Pelowski (pehl-OW'-skee) of Winona was the only member of his party to vote against the Dayton plan.

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