Pawlenty’s last State of the State – and a little perspective

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Gov. Tim Pawlenty delivered his eighth and final State of the State speech on Thursday, with a focus on “jobs, jobs, jobs” as his spokesman Brian McClung said in a preview on Wednesday. (Video from The Uptake below)

Pawlenty called for tax cuts and tax credits in the speech, including cutting the corporate tax rate, tax exemptions for small businesses, an “angel investor” tax credit, capital gains tax cuts and other proposals.

You can watch the address below. But here are a couple things to keep in mind while watching the speech:

Pawlenty is releasing his supplemental budget proposal on Monday, and in it, he will have to provide a means of escaping a $1.2 billion budget deficit remaining in the state government’s budget cycle that ends in mid-2011.

That’s because, according to Minnesota State Economist Tom Stinson in the state’s November economic forecast, it will be 2013 before Minnesota returns to the levels of employment it enjoyed in late 2007, just before the recession began.

Here’s the big picture when it comes to Minnesota’s employment record over the past few decades. Pawlenty has been governor since 2002, so as he prepares to exit the Minnesota stage in hopes of entering the national stage, keep his performance in mind.

And Pawlenty’s not alone in calling for tax cuts and credits. Sen. James Metzen, DFL-South St. Paul, and other DFLers in the Senate have proposed their own jobs bill, SF 2167. It would establish small business tax credits, establish an “angel investor” tax credit program and provide incentives for “green building” and historic renovation construction.

State of the State address, courtesy of The Uptake
Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty delivers his final State of the State address to the Minnesota legislature touting his JobZ program which critics say doesn’t work, more business tax cuts that would add more to the looming state deficit and no solutions to the problem he has caused the poorest of the poor in Minnesota by vetoing the General Assistance Medical Care Program.