Latest Posts





With a $1.2 Billion Deficit, American Experiment Budget Report Argues for GDP Growth, Not Tax Increases

Center of the American Experiment this week released their latest economic report titled Closing Minnesota’s Budget Deficit, providing a roadmap for Governor Walz and the legislature to follow while closing a $1.2 billion budget deficit for the next biennium. The report offers research, data and suggestions for how to deal with the budget deficit. The report concludes that growing Minnesota’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) will have a much stronger impact on revenue growth than raising state tax rates. “To solve the state’s $1.2 billion budget shortfall and increase revenue to the state, leaders should focus on growing the state economy rather than increasing...

Continue reading

Politicians should not use the budget deficit as an excuse to increase taxes

In response to Minnesota Management and Budget’s deficit projection, Center of the American Experiment economist John Phelan released the following statement: “Politicians should not use the budget deficit as an excuse to increase taxes, especially during an employment crisis that rivals the Great Depression. Minnesotans are already some of the most heavily taxed citizens in America, and it is not just the rich who are taxed heavily: Our lowest income tax rate of 5.35% is higher than the highest tax bracket in 25 states. “Furthermore, state spending has increased so drastically in recent years that budget cuts are overdue. If we spent...

Continue reading

COVID-19’s Economic Impact in Minnesota

In anticipation of the possible widespread proliferation of COVID-19 in Minnesota, economist John Phelan outlined risk factors for the state economy, as well as bright spots where Minnesota may fare better than other states. Watch the press conference: Is MN’s economy prepared for COVID-19? 🦠 In some ways, yes, MN will be better off than other states. In other ways, definitely not. TUNE IN for more.Posted by Center of the American Experiment on Friday, March 13, 2020 Drawing on data from the recent report, The State of Minnesota’s Economy: 2019, Phelan predicts that Minnesota’s diverse economy will help shield the state from a...

Continue reading

Tax cuts drove economic growth, leading to state budget surplus

In response to the Budget and Economic Forecast projecting a $1.332 billion surplus, Center of the American Experiment Economist John Phelan released the following statement: “We can attribute this budget surplus to economic growth driven by federal tax cuts. This shows again that pro-growth policies are more effective at generating revenue than confiscatory taxes. There is absolutely no argument for tax increases with such a large surplus. “This doesn’t mean lawmakers should go on a spending spree. Weakening manufacturing indicators driven by federal trade policy, coupled with slower employment growth, shows that we cannot take economic growth for granted.”...

Continue reading

Report finds looming weakness in Minnesota’s workforce

Center of the American Experiment released new research today that analyzes current trends in Minnesota’s labor market and predicts the future of the state’s workforce for the next two decades. Minnesota’s Workforce to 2050 explains how the state's above average levels of employment mask below average productivity, why an aging population – exacerbated by declining youth employment – could have an outsized impact on Minnesota’s economy, and what policy makers can do to prevent it. Minnesota’s high employment is the reason for its above-average per capita incomes. Economic data show hard work is the source of Minnesota’s high per capita incomes; the state’s...

Continue reading

Minnesota’s economic growth lags national average for the third consecutive quarter

New data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis shows that Minnesota’s economy was only the 36th fastest growing in the United States in the first quarter of 2019. While the U.S. generally saw growth of 3.1% in real terms, Minnesota experienced growth of 2.6%. This is the third consecutive quarter in which Minnesota’s growth has lagged the national average. John Phelan, Economist at the Center of the American Experiment, released a statement: “In the last few years we have written reports on the state’s economy calling its performance ‘lackluster’ or ‘unimpressive.’ This new data bears that out. Our state lags national averages...

Continue reading

Twin Metals Minnesota Announces Most Environmentally Friendly Mine in Minnesota History

Twin Metals Minnesota (TMM) announced today they will take extraordinary measures to protect Minnesota’s water resources at their planned copper-nickel mine in Northern Minnesota by using a method called dry stack tailings storage, which is often touted by environmental groups as the best way to store waste rock left over from the mining process. Isaac Orr, policy fellow at Center of the American Experiment, released the following statement: “This approach will make the Twin Metals mine the most environmentally friendly mine in the history of our state. It’s further proof we can protect Minnesota’s pristine environment while growing a strong mining economy....

Continue reading

Minnesotans ‘dodge a bullet’ as carbon-free energy mandates don’t make the cut in final budget bill

(St. Paul, MN) – Isaac Orr, Policy Fellow at Center of the American Experiment, released the following statement in response to the newly posted budget agreement for Jobs, Energy, and Commerce, which does not include a 100% carbon-free energy mandate. Orr testified in front of House and Senate energy committees six times during the 2019 legislative session in opposition to the mandate. “Minnesotans dodged a bullet this legislative session. If the ‘Green New Deal’ style carbon-free energy mandate had passed, the costs to Minnesota families, businesses, and the state government would have crippled our state’s economy. Despite the costs, there would be no measurable impact on...

Continue reading

Minnesotans narrowly escape gas tax increase, avoid yet another nation-leading high tax rate

(St. Paul, MN) – John Phelan, Economist at Center of the American Experiment, released the following statement in response to the two-year budget deal announced by Gov. Walz and legislative leaders: "Minnesotans spoke out strong and loud against Gov. Walz's proposed 70% gas tax increase, and narrowly escaped it thanks to conservatives at the legislature. The gas tax may be the only reasonable tax rate Minnesota has left. Our income tax, estate tax, and corporate tax rates are sky-high compared to other states.  "Gasoline is a vital input into a wide range of economic activity, from manufacturing to services. An increase in the cost of fuel would...

Continue reading