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Blogosphere abuzz about shutdown

Associated Press

ST. PAUL -- The blogosphere has been humming since a budget impasse shut down parts of the state government on Friday for the first time in state history.

Unsurprisingly, blogs from the right and left blamed their ideological opponents for the shutdown, which idled about 9,000 state employees, closed driver's license exam stations and barricaded highway rest stops over the July Fourth weekend.

Top legislative leaders met late Monday afternoon to try to reach a budget deal, but no resolution was reached. Lawmakers were expected back at the Capitol today for more negotiations.

For right-leaning blogs, the DFL-controlled Senate forced the shutdown to politically damage Gov. Tim Pawlenty, a popular Republican.

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"Political insiders here in Minnesota told me some time ago that the Democrats were maneuvering to try to achieve a shutdown of the state government," John Hinderaker wrote on Power Line. "Their strategy was to refuse to agree on a budget, hold out until there was no alternative to a shutdown and then blame Republican Governor Tim Pawlenty."

Pawlenty and the Republican-controlled House were the villains, according to left-leaning blogs.

"Our Minnesota Republicans are so stubborn, so obsessed with playing politics instead of getting the job done, that they're even threatening to go back on earlier compromises," Minnesota Republican Watch writes on its Web site.

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