Latest Posts





Blue State Exodus: It Isn’t Just Minnesota

The Center's Peter Nelson ignited a statewide debate over Minnesota's liberal tax, regulate and spend policies with his blockbuster report Minnesotans on the Move to Lower Tax States 2016. Peter showed, using the Internal Revenue Service's database, that Minnesota is a net loser of population and household income to other states. In 2014, Minnesota lost a whopping $948 million in net household income. Moreover, the loss was overwhelmingly to lower-tax states. The problem is two-fold. First, as has been widely reported, thousands of Minnesotans are moving to other states. But second, equally important, Americans from other states who are deciding...

Continue reading

Quotas on the Menu at General Mills

The Star Tribune recently reported on Golden Valley-based General Mills' plans to pressure the food giant's advertising agencies to adhere to strict racial and gender staffing quotas or forget about landing the account. From now on Madison Avenue will have to hire fewer Mad Men and at least 50 percent women and 20 percent people of color in order to get a slice of the Fortune 500 company's $700 million annual marketing budget. The announcement seemed to be viewed as a great step forward by some, even as the Wheaties' cereal producer "forecast weak sales growth for the first quarter" of next...

Continue reading

Minnesota’s high-tech industry can do much better

A new documentary film on Minnesota’s high tech industry is set to premiere on September 22.  As the Star Tribune’s Lee Schafer explains, “the gist of the movie is that the technology industry here is diverse, vibrant and sits atop a foundation of groundbreaking computer success.” It appears the main aim of the documentary is to promote Minnesota as a great place to run a high-tech business.  The film was borne from Nick Roseth’s frustration with how, in his view, people inside and outside the region don’t know that Minnesota’s high tech industry is thriving.   Roseth is a technology consulting executive. Efforts...

Continue reading

Are Voters Catching On to the Minimum Wage?

The minimum wage is a classic feel-good measure: who wouldn't want relatively low-paid workers to earn a little more money? No one. In my view, the minimum wage doesn't do any harm as long as it is equal to or less than what employers are paying to entry-level employees in a given locality. But if you increase it beyond that point (as a $15 wage would do almost everywhere) the result is fewer employment opportunities for young people. Almost all minimum wage workers are young people trying to catch on to the bottom rung of the economic ladder. At one time, this...

Continue reading

Minnesota Supreme Court should find state law preempts Minneapolis minimum wage proposal

Update: The Minnesota Supreme Court blocked the ballot proposal from being placed on the ballot because the present city charter does not provide for submitting ordinances by a citizen petition.  The question remains open on whether state law preempts Minneapolis from adopting a minimum wage as I argue below. Today the Minnesota Supreme Court will hear arguments over whether a Minneapolis charter amendment to raise the minimum wage in the city to $15/hr should be placed on the ballot in November.  The arguments will also address the appropriateness of another proposed charter amendment to require Minneapolis police officers to carry liability insurance. The...

Continue reading

Minnesota’s Economy: No Beacon of Prosperity!

Today, the St. Cloud Times published this op-ed by American Experiment Senior Policy Fellow Kathy Kersten: If you’re like most Minnesotans, you may believe our state is doing great economically. We’ve long been proud of our renowned work ethic, our high educational attainment, and the many Fortune 500 companies that call our state home. But a new report from Center of the American Experiment details the worrisome clouds on our state’s economic horizon. The report makes clear that in recent years, Minnesota’s traditionally competitive economy has underperformed other states on most major economic indicators. Worse yet, our own state agencies forecast an even...

Continue reading

Minnesota’s Economy Faces a Turning Point

Minnesota's economy faces a turning point. That's the message of American Experiment's new report, “Minnesota’s Economy: Mediocre Performance Threatens the State’s Future.” It's a report with statewide implications, so the Center will be on the road to share the findings in communities throughout Minnesota in the weeks and months to come. Our first town hall co-hosted by the St. Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce this week attracted entrepreneurs, legislators and other local officials. We also met with the editorial board of the St. Cloud Times to discuss workforce, job creation, tax and regulatory issues raised in the report. Local media outlets play an...

Continue reading

Download American Experiment’s Blockbuster Report on Minnesota’s Economy

On August 15, the Center published a report by Dr. Joseph Kennedy titled "MINNESOTA’S ECONOMY: Mediocre Performance Threatens the State's Future." The report has gained a great deal of attention and has been hailed as a wake-up call for Minnesota's policymakers. To read or download the report, click here. ...

Continue reading

Star Tribune Editorial Urges Bipartisan Focus on Center’s Economy Report

American Experiment’s new report on the state’s economy shows Minnesota’s performance has been average, at best, over the last 15 years, trailing many other states in job creation, income growth and other key benchmarks.  Moreover, leading indicators point to Minnesota’s economy performing below average in the years ahead. Today the Star Tribune published a lead editorial on the findings of our 37-page report, urging liberals to dig into the findings which deserve bipartisan attention. The report, “Minnesota’s Economy: Mediocre performance threatens the state’s future,” (http://tinyurl.com/joswboy) describes several worrisome trends. Among them: Overall growth in Minnesota as measured by gross domestic product (GDP)...

Continue reading

Is Minnesota A Good Place to Retire?

Financial World ranks the nine worst states to retire to, based on taxes and cost of living. They are mostly the usual suspects--New York, California, D.C., New Jersey, Oregon, Hawaii. And there at number 8 is Minnesota: The Land of 10,000 Lakes is consistently included in the list of least tax-friendly states for retirees. The state even taxes social security benefits. Even other retirement income like military, government, and private pensions are taxable. While the average household income for individuals 65 and older, which is at 13.7% below the U.S. average, is beneath the thresholds for highest tax bracket, the cost of...

Continue reading