Feeding Our Future fallout: Voters perceive more government $ are wasted

In the wake of the Feeding Our Future scandal, Minnesota voters believe a greater share of taxpayer dollars are wasted than ever before.

The Center’s exclusive Thinking Minnesota opinion poll asks the following question from time to time:

What percentage of state spending is wasteful? If you had to give me your best educated guess, what percentage would you say it is?

The poll has asked the question three times: twice before the pandemic (August 2018 and September 2019) and again last month. The trend is striking.

The average percent reported back by voters crept up from 2018 (27 percent) to 2019 (28 percent) and then jumped up to an average of 34 percent in 2023.

In other words, the average Minnesota voter thinks that more than a third of state government spending is wasted. Even Democrats believe that more than one in five taxpayer dollars (22 percent) is wasted.

Cynicism over government spending jumped the most among political independents. In 2019, independent voters believed on average that 25 percent of government spending is wasted. That figure in 2023 for independents is up to 43 percent wasted, virtually the same answer given by Republicans.

We’ll discuss more about these poll results and the Feeding Our Future scandal during our webinar this Thursday evening: