Governor Walz makes unprecedented move and issues unconstitutional order quarantining Minnesotans to their homes. The order was announced at a 2 pm press conference and is not currently available to be read by the public. Walz' order would force people to stay in their homes unless they meet the criteria of the approved activities or are part of essential services.
How does one man issue an order that eradicates our rights protected by the Minnesota Bill of Rights? Simple answer is: he can't!
Walz has made a clear violation of the separation of powers in our state constitution and has abused the powers of his office. The blowback of this step is yet to be seen since the order provides vague exceptions to the mandate for activities like:
- Health and safety activities, such as obtaining emergency services or medical supplies
- Outdoor activities, such as walking, hiking, running, biking, hunting, or fishing
- Necessary Supplies and Services, such as getting groceries, gasoline, or carry-out
- Essential and interstate travel, such as returning to a home from outside this state
- Care of others, such as caring for a family member, friend, or pet in another household
- Displacement, such as moving between emergency shelters if you are without a home
- Relocation to ensure safety, such as relocating to a different location if your home has been unsafe due to domestic violence, sanitation, or essential operations reasons
- Tribal activities and lands, such as activities by members within the boundaries of their tribal reservation
Although this order seems relatively minimal in its impact, it moves Minnesota in a dangerous direction towards authoritarianism. Eventually law enforcement and government regulators will take the vagueness in the order to infringe on our rights. Our travel may be questioned by traffic stops. Firearms and ammunition sales might be halted because they are not considered "essential". Independent journalism, an important key to combatting the unified messaging of corporate media, may be barred from receiving media exemptions.
The 2020 Minnesota Legislative session began with a $4 Billion surplus in play (budgetary balance + reserves). Which means that taxpayers in this state were overcharged. Not surprising to anyone, the Democrats wanted to take all the surplus money and spend it on more government. While the Republican Senate proposed to give a portion back and keep the rest in government coffers.
Now we are learning that the revised estimates of the surplus have shrunk due to supplemental spending packages that passed a week ago or are likely to pass on Thursday. According to the Office of Management & Budget, the budgetary balance is only $811 Million. When added to the $2.4 Billion in Reserves, the surplus has shrunk to $3.2 Billion.
Since budgetary balances are projections of revenues and expenditures for the remainder of the biennium budget, it's likely to be erased soon by a decline in revenues due to the COVID Recession. That means the only surplus funds left to return to taxpayers is the massive $2.4 Billion Reserve Account (labeled the "rainy day" fund by legislators).
Unfortunately, legislators on both sides of the aisle, want to use the "rainy day" funds to ensure government doesn't have to make cuts. Meanwhile, Minnesota families are struggling financially with the uncertainty of these economic times. Here's Republican Representative Pat Garofalo prioritizing keeping the money for government.
Now, more than ever, it's important for politicians in St Paul to start making cuts to our bloated government and give back our money! Tell your legislator to prioritize Minnesota families instead of government spending...and give the reserves back to taxpayers!
The Minnesota Legislature is planning on meeting this Thursday to rush forward another spending package to combat the spread of COVID-19. According to Fluence Media, the legislation would contain Governor Walz' supplemental spending budget to include:
- $200 million to establish a COVID-19 emergency fund
- $29 million for emergency child care grants
- $10 million for DEED’s Small Business Loan Guarantee Fund
- $9 million for food shelves
Noticeably missing from the discussion, however, is why the legislature and Governor aren't proposing to give back the remainder of the budget surplus and the massive reserves, often referred to as "rainy day funds". Returning these funds could amount to $2,000 for taxpaying families in Minnesota.
Hey Senator Gazelka and Speaker Hortman: It's raining in Minnesota!
What possible crisis or emergency is more important than giving this money back to us right now? We've been overtaxed, which is why these funds even exist. As the federal government turns to the printing press to send checks to Americans (not a real solution in the long haul), the Minnesota legislature could give back billions of real dollars that are sitting in a government account.
It's immoral for these politicians to meet on Thursday and ignore the real struggles that Minnesota families are going through financially when there is something they can do about it. The restaurant industry is completely crushed since they've been ordered to close their businesses. And we're learning everyday about members of our organization who are being laid off or losing their jobs.
So why is the legislature and Governor not giving us back our money? Are they worried that government revenues will fall this year and hoping to keep the money for more wasteful, government projects? Shouldn't the Republican Senate, who say they are for less government and less taxes, be leading on this issue right now?
We, the people of Minnesota, are facing some uncertain times. A lot of that is the result of government's overreaction. So now, more than ever, we call on the legislature and Governor to immediately give back the surplus and budget reserves to the taxpayers!
The political elite are using the COVID-19 crisis to rapidly expand the powers of government, while limiting our God given rights. Governor Tim Walz appears to be on the verge of issuing a government mandated "Quarantine for All" order. He's already unilaterally shut down commerce in restaurants and bars and has made it illegal for businesses to set their own prices.
Let's take a look at the powers (the only powers) granted to the Governor in the Minnesota Constitution.
In fact, our Constitution clearly states that powers are divided amongst 3 branches. There's no exception for declared emergencies.
Walz, and his compliant Attorney General friend Keith Ellison, turn to state statutes to claim emergency powers. But statutes do not supersede the law of the land, our Constitution. More importantly, emergency powers in state statute cannot limit our God given rights protected by the Minnesota Bill of Rights...
Section 2. Rights and privileges. No member of this state shall be disfranchised or deprived of any of the rights or privileges secured to any citizen thereof, unless by the law of the land or the judgment of his peers. There shall be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude in the state otherwise than as punishment for a crime of which the party has been convicted.
Section 3. Liberty of the press. The liberty of the press shall forever remain inviolate, and all persons may freely speak, write and publish their sentiments on all subjects, being responsible for the abuse of such right.
Section 7. Due process. No person shall [...] be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law.
Section 16. Freedom of conscience. The enumeration of rights in this constitution shall not deny or impair others retained by and inherent in the people. The right of every man to worship God according to the dictates of his own conscience shall never be infringed; nor shall any man be compelled to attend, erect or support any place of worship, or to maintain any religious or ecclesiastical ministry, against his consent; nor shall any control of or interference with the rights of conscience be permitted.
Know your rights and use them. If you don't know them, you'll inevitably lose them. Giving one person, unilateral law-making power goes against the spirit of our Constitutional, Republican form of government. We should not stand for Governor Walz' vague laws. Powers of government are suppose to be expressly written and limited; while our freedoms are inherently vague and widespread.
Action 4 Liberty will always be opposed to authoritarianism, but we encourage people to listen to the science. Free people can and will make the right choices for their community. Here's a list of guidance from the White House on combatting the spread.
Governor Walz took a radical step in the direction of authoritarian rule by opening the possibility to issuing an order that forces Minnesotans to stay in their homes. The order comes as the Governors of New York and California issued similar "Shelter-in-Place" orders that force citizens to not leave their home by threat of imprisonment or fines.
“I certainly think it is a possibility,” Walz mentioned in an interview with WCCO. “We have to have every tool in the toolbox.”
What Would a Shelter-in-Place Order Mean?
Minnesotans would only be allowed out of their home for a list of government approved circumstances. So far, the lists adopted by other states are pretty vague. Those who work in "essential services" can leave for work and citizens are able to visit stores to purchase groceries and supplies.
There would also likely be an exception for people engaging in health related activities such as running, biking or taking walks.
Why This is Problematic
This sets an incredibly dangerous precedent for the political elite who constantly seek to grow our reliance on the government and limit our everyday freedoms. In order to carry out anti-freedom policies, politicians use an incremental approach because they know that drastic measures will end in revolts. But they use the fear of the unknown amongst the population in a crisis to cease these new powers. And it works.
The Star Tribune ran an online poll and found a slight majority of the people would welcome a Shelter-in-Place order. Although not a scientific poll, it does represent what many of us believe is the case: we've been scared into giving up our rights.
A Shelter-in-Place would be an enormous hit to our already struggling economy. As government scrambles to update its definition of "essential services", many industries would either cease activity or drastically reduce commerce. Despite what the political class promises with "stimulus and bailout packages", we'll all be paying for that since the government doesn't have money that they haven't taxed or created using the printing press.
The most problematic part of Walz taking this step, however, is that law enforcement and government regulators will take the vagueness in the order to infringe on our rights. Our travel may be questioned by traffic stops. Firearms and ammunition sales might be halted because they are not considered "essential". Independent journalism, an important key to combatting the unified messaging of corporate media, may be barred from receiving media exemptions.
Action 4 Liberty opposes Governor Walz unilaterally creating laws that infringe on our rights. Minnesotans should follow the advice of medical professionals in combatting the spread of COVID-19, but at the same point, not stand for authoritarian rule by politicians in St Paul.
Rep Ilhan Omar proposed a plan to give Americans $1,000 per adult and $500 per child in an emergency stimulus package to help families as they struggle from the financial ramifications of the COVID-19 outbreak. In an interview with WCCO, Omar acknowledged the similarity between her and Trump's plans.
"I applaud this Administration for thinking about the people, for wanting to put money in people's pockets" stated the freshman Congresswoman.
With a current trillion dollar budget deficit and a projected loss in federal revenues due to the economic downturn, in order to enact a program like Omar's, the federal government would have to turn to the printing press. If passed, the U.S. Treasury would create money out of thin air and send to families as relief.
Monetary inflation leads to a rise in prices because more dollars are chasing an unchanged basket of goods and services. The rise in prices adversely affects low income families the most. Therefore, this plan proposed by Omar would equate to a tax on low income families.
Action 4 Liberty recently called for a plan to give Minnesota families $1,000 back. But the difference with our plan is that the money already exists and is owed to taxpayers. Rep Munson's Give It Back Act takes the $4 Billion budget surplus and returns it to the people in the state who paid taxes.
Trump is preparing the United States for an unprecedented socialistic program that will lead to further economic issues and we need to speak out against it. According to the AP, Trump asked Congress to speed emergency checks to American citizens in an economic stimulus package that would amount to a trillion dollars. He aims to have checks in the hands of the people within two weeks.
There's no question the COVID-19 spread is going to be a major blow to the U.S. and global economies. Millions of Americans will be out of work, leaving those with no savings and who live paycheck-to-paycheck in a real bad spot. But Trump's program will be more disastrous down the road than good in the immediate term.
The government isn't sitting on an extra trillion dollars in cash. In fact, they are running a trillion dollar deficit. So in order to "stimulate", the federal government would go directly to the printing press like they did in the Great Recession.
But there's a difference.
When the Federal Reserve inflated the money supply in the past, the newly created money went to banks and large institutions, thus creating a rise in asset prices (stocks, bonds, etc). Trump's proposal would take all the newly created money and inject it right into consumer goods, thus creating inflation in the everyday items we need and depend on.
Apart from the inflationary problems, sending checks to all Americans sets us on a direct course to socialism. How long will the program last? How will the government continue to afford it? If the government is in the position of making payments to us, they will want something in exchange (most likely property). Look no further than what happens to the elderly on Medicaid or those who use ObamaCare coverage.
Trump's move would also make us more reliant on the federal government which is the antithesis to the foundation of our country. Instead of relying on Uncle Sam, this crisis is the opportune time for our dependence on government to shrink so we can instead rely on family, friends and community.
Action 4 Liberty suggests reaching out to family, friends and neighbors during this crisis to find out how you can help each other. Community solutions are a better course for this country than government dependence.
Instead of receiving a $1,000 check from the federal government of newly created money, Action 4 Liberty called upon the Minnesota Legislature to return the massive $4 Billion surplus to taxpayers immediately. It's our money that was overtaxed and no printing press would be needed to put it back in our pockets. Check out Rep Munson's Give It Back Act to learn more.
Governor Tim Walz went a step too far yesterday when issuing Executive Order 20-04 which closes all bars, restaurants, and other places of "public accommodation". Citing Minnesota Statutes 2019, section 12.21, subdivision 3(1), Walz proclaims he has the authority to infringe on the rights of private citizens. Constitution be damned!
The spirit of the Minnesota Constitution is embedded in Article 16: "The enumeration of rights in this constitution shall not deny or impair others retained by and inherent in the people."
Walz and politicians in St Paul must understand that the rule of law in this state is the Constitution, not some vague statute that power hungry Governors can use to trample rights. If the Governor has the right to do whatever he sees fit, then what is the point in a Bill of Rights? Can he then use this vague power to set curfews, limit our speech or ban our firearms?
Many will argue that the Governor's right to carry out such an order is inherit in the system of licensing and regulation of private businesses. After all, it's the state of Minnesota that issues liquor licenses to establishments. But this is a gross exaggeration of power. The government issues drivers licenses to citizens. Using that logic, would they have the right to ban all citizens with government issued drivers licenses from owning a vehicle?
Is it good to avoid bars and restaurants?
In order to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus, it's generally a good policy for individuals to avoid places with more than 10 people, especially if they live or come in contact with someone in a high risk class (elderly or chronic health issues). The risk is much lower in rural areas in Minnesota that are not affected by the virus. We should let these business owners make the call.
It's not too hard to understand the severe economic repercussions of this order. Thousands of low income, service workers will be out of a job for months to come and restaurants owners who are already in a cutthroat business, will have several months of negative cash flow.
Action 4 Liberty believes the Governor went too far and does not have the right to tell private businesses to shut their doors. In this crisis, politicians have become authoritarian and our Constitution has been trampled. Walz should send out advisories instead of orders. It's good to share the wisdom of the scientific community. But once we've gone against the rights of the people, we've gone too far.
Leaders of the Minnesota Legislature just held a press conference to discuss their plan to hold a legislative session under the COVID-19 outbreak. Senator Majority Leader Gazelka and Speaker Hortman proclaimed that legislative leaders, including Minority Leaders Rep Kurt Daudt and Sen Susan Kent, have three priorities for the remainder of the session:
1. Funding bill for hospitals (possibly $100 Million)
2. Passing omnibus debt bill (bonding bill)
3. Bipartisan bills (not particularly dealing with COVID-19)
Neither Republican or Democrat leaders mentioned giving back the $4 Billion surplus immediately to taxpayers to help Minnesotans during these financial uncertainties. When asked by the media, they also had no answer on whether or not there will be an extension to tax deadlines for Minnesota filers.
It appears the intent of the legislative leaders right now is to continue withholding funds from the citizens of Minnesota so that government can use them instead of families. Action 4 Liberty believes it is vitally critical for our legislature to give back the money we've been overtaxed so that families can make it through the financial hardships we're about to face.
Governor Tim Walz proposes keeping the $4 Billion surplus in the government coffers citing concerns over potential emergency needs due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Currently the state of Minnesota is holding onto a record surplus and budget reserves that equates to $1,000 per taxpayer.
Walz' proposal is to spend $256 Million on new spending programs and retain billions of dollars in government accounts, according to KSTP.
In this climate, it seems the prevailing wisdom from politicians in St Paul is that it's more important for government to hold onto our money than for families to have it back in their pockets. However, Rep Jeremy Munson authored the Give It Back Act last week that would issue refund checks to Minnesota taxpayers up to $1,000 per individual, $2,000 per couple. Five other Republican legislators have signed onto the legislation in the House.
Minnesota families are about to experience significant financial disruptions in their lives. Schools are closing, meaning parents will either have to take leave with their jobs or hire child care providers to watch their kids. All the industries connected to travel and sports are going to have massive layoffs. And those who depend on income from securities tied to market performance, will be taking big pay cuts as the stock market loses value.
So what is the argument for government to have our money in this crisis? If there was ever a time for government to give back the surplus and extend the tax filing period, now is that time.
SIGN OUR PETITION and tell Governor Walz and politicians in St Paul to give us our $1,000 back now!