The 2021 Golden Turkey Award
Minnesotans vote for the worst examples of government spending.
At the beginning of his prepared remarks about the budget surplus this week, Gov. Tim Walz referenced a story in the press about past Minnesota governors putting together economic councils, reacting to what he called “economic disruptions.” Here’s what he said:
There was a fascinating story, and I won’t call out the media outlet who have this, but it was by some historians who wrote and talked about other opportunities that came out of economic disruption and how the state approached those. And the one that they were speaking about was nearing the end of WWII in Governor Olson putting together a committee much like we’ve done with our Council on economic expansion…
Even back in 1943 and 1944 when that first council came out their conclusions were very simple remembering in the 1930s Minnesota was below the median average for incomes, post that council of Governor Olson’s and going into the seventies eighties…
The first problem with this statement is that Tim Walz harkened back to Floyd B. Olson, a Minnesota governor who spoke like a socialist and flirted with communism. Yikes.
The second problem with this statement is that Walz completely botched the facts. Floyd B. Olson was governor from 1931-1935, not “nearing the end of WWII” as Walz said in the press conference. The piece Walz (or his crack staff) read appeared in MinnPost and briefly mentions Olson before attributing the council Walz referenced to Gov. Edward Thye, who served in office from 1943-1947.
Perhaps Walz’s partisanship would not allow him to quote a Republican. Ironically, the MinnPost story reveals that Gov. Harold Stassen, a Republican, renamed Olson’s original economic council in “an effort to separate the work of the commission from an association with Five-Year Plans or anything smacking of socialism.”
The third problem with Walz’s statement is the fact that no one in the Capitol press corps bothered to correct him. Walz inherited a lap dog press from Gov. Mark Dayton and they have no interest in holding Walz accountable to the truth.