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Minnesota GOP ran March Madness-style government shutdown pool?

Jun 6, 2011, 11:05 AM EDT

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budget pool copy

Just as in most states, Minnesota is struggling with budget issues. Legislators are facing the the prospect of shutting down the state government and perhaps laying off as many as 36,000 workers. And so, state Republicans figured there was only one thing to do: Conduct an NCAAA tournament-style betting pool on the outcome — including whether legislation on the expansion of state gambling would pass. Entry fee? One dollar.

CBS Minnesota:

“This is an ‘IN-HOUSE” document,” according to the rules of the pool, “intended for staff only-just for fun. Thanks, and good luck”.

“This is disgusting,” said Eliot Seide, the head of AFSCME, Minnesota’s largest state workers union. “Thanks and good luck? Make a bet on how long our people are going to be out of work? What kind of sick people are these?”

Republicans say the pool was never distributed.

“It’s incredibly inappropriate”, said Michael Brodkorb, Executive Assistant to the Senate GOP Caucus, who said neither he nor any Republican leaders were aware of the pool. “It wasn’t distributed. Copies were discarded and no bets were taken.”

Could have been worse. The backup idea was a toga party.

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Minnesota Government Shutdown: Wanna Bet? [CBS Minnesota]
Betting Against a Budget: MN GOP takes March Madness-style bets on government shutdown? [CityPages]