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UPDATE: Senate Rejects, Then Backs Tax Hike Bill

Images_of_Money, Flickr

ST. PAUL (AP) — The Minnesota Senate has passed a package of income and sales tax increases after initially rejecting the package.

Monday’s debate on the Senate tax bill took a turbulent turn after the surprise initial defeat of the DFL-sponsored tax bill. That’s because Democrats hold a Senate majority, but a group of mostly suburban DFL senators joined minority Republicans to block it.

Senior Democratic senators huddled privately after the first vote. Then one DFL senator who voted no moved to reconsider the bill’s defeat, after which senators debated it longer and finally passed it 35-31. Two Democrats who initially voted no switched to yes on the second vote.

The bill hikes income taxes on the wealthy, adds the state sales tax to clothes and some services and raises the cigarette tax.

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