Gov. Mark Dayton is now describing his ongoing budget disagreement with Republican legislative leaders as "theater of the absurd."
Dayton claims the GOP has not yet proposed a balanced budget. He says the House and Senate spending bills passed earlier this month are still short by more than $1 billion.
The DFL governor told reporters Tuesday that he wants Republicans to finalize their budget bills by next Friday, which would leave another two weeks of the session to negotiate a final agreement.
"They should have to do what I did, which was have a budget that adds up to the $34 billion they've set," said Dayton. "They don't want to raise revenues, so be it. But then tell us, tell the people of Minnesota exactly where they're going to make all the cuts necessary to achieve that target."
Republican leaders insist that their numbers are sound. They also want to use the conference committees to negotiate with Dayton on a bill-by-bill basis.