After six months of disagreement and seven days of intense negotiations, the Minnesota state government shut down at midnight last night.
Gov. Mark Dayton (D) and the Republican-controlled legislature have been in a standoff since the beginning of the legislative session over how to close a projected $5 billion budget deficit.
In an echo of the national budget fight, Dayton wanted to raise taxes on the wealthiest 2 percent of Minnesotans. Republicans wanted to close the gap with spending cuts and accounting shifts.
Republicans offered a deal that included layoffs for some state workers and teachers along with some unrelated measures they have been unable to pass, including a voter ID law and abortion restrictions. The GOP also proposed delaying $700 million in payment to public schools, who are already owed about $1 billion by the state.