Difference between revisions of "Mark Dayton"

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|office1998=Governor of Minnesota*
|office1998=Governor of Minnesota**
|Note=*These funds represent a joint-ticket race with Lieutenant Governor [[Yvonne Prettner Solon]].
|Note=*These funds represent a joint-ticket race with Lieutenant Governor [[Yvonne Prettner Solon]]. **These funds represent a joint-ticket race with Julie Jansen.

Revision as of 11:11, 12 July 2013

Mark Dayton
Mark Dayton.jpg
Governor of Minnesota
In office
January 3, 2011 - Present
Term ends
January 2015
Years in position 4
PredecessorTim Pawlenty
Base salary$120,303
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 2, 2010
First electedNovember 2, 2010
Next generalNovember 4, 2014
Campaign $$7,977,903
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
United States Senator
January 3, 2001-January 3, 2007
Minnesota Auditor
Bachelor'sYale University (1969)
Date of birthJanuary 26, 1947
Place of birthMinneapolis, Minnesota
Office website
Mark Dayton (b. January 26, 1947 Minneapolis, MN) is the Democratic Governor of Minnesota.[1] He was first elected governor in 2010 and was sworn into office on January 3, 2011. His term will expire in January of 2015.

One of the chief issues from Dayton's first term has been taxes. He argued for tax increases during his 2010 gubernatorial campaign in 2010 and continued advocating for them during legislative debates over the state budget. In the summer of 2011, Dayton's demand for tax increases on the state's highest earners clashed with Republicans' refusal to consider any hikes, resulting in the memorable shutdown of the Minnesota government.[2] On May 23, 2013, Dayton signed a tax bill raising the tax rate for upper-income residents.

Before becoming governor, Dayton served in the United States Senate for a single term during which he was cited for erratic behavior and lack of legislative productivity by his then-colleagues, Dayton declined to run for re-election. His old seat is now head by fellow Democrat Amy Klobuchar.[3]

Early in his career, Dayton was a social worker in Boston, Massachusetts. He made his first bid for U.S. Senate in 1982. He lost the election, however he remained in public life working as Walter Mondale's legislative assistant and in 1990 he was elected Minnesota State Auditor.

Dayton is eligible for re-election and will seek a second term as governor in 2014. The general election will take place on November 4, 2014.[4]


A Minnesota native, Mark Dayton was born to Gwendolen May Brandt and Bruce Bliss Dayton. On his father's side, he is descended from George Dayton, founder of Dayton's Department Stores. The fortune he inherited has helped Dayton in his political ambitions; he spent $12 million of his personal wealth on his 2000 Senate campaign and, to date, just under $3 million on his gubernatorial campaign.

Growing up in Long Lake, Dayton studied at the Blake School in Hopkins. He went to college at Yale, where he played Division I Hockey. While at Yale, he joined Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity, where future president George W. Bush was a brother. After graduating, he spent two years teaching in New York City's public high schools. In 1971, he moved to Boston and spent time in social work.


  • Yale University, B.A., 1969, cum laude

Political career

Governor of Minnesota (2011-present)

Job creation ranking

In a June 2013 analysis by The Business Journals, which ranked 45 of the country's 50 governors by their job creation records, Dayton was ranked number 15. The five governors omitted from the analysis all assumed office in 2013. The ranking was based on a comparison of the annual private sector growth rate in all 50 states using data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.[5][6]

Tax increase

Dayton signed a bill increasing taxes by $2.1 billion on May 23, 2013. This legislation included a $1.60 per pack increase on cigarette taxes and a higher tax rate for upper-income residents.[7] Individuals earning at least $150,000 per year and couples earning $250,000 per year will pay a 9.85 percent rate on earned income.[8] Dayton supported tax increases to fill a $627 million deficit, boost funding for early education programs and pay for a portion of a new football stadium for the Minnesota Vikings. The governor argued for tax increases during his gubernatorial campaign in 2010 and continued advocating for increases during legislative debates over the state budget. "My feeling is, everybody ought to pay their fair share of taxes. If you make more, you pay more; if you make less, you pay less," stated Dayton during a March 2013 speech in Duluth.[9]

Same-sex marriage

On February 17, 2013, Senator Scott Dibble announced on a talk show that he would introduce a bill in the Minnesota State Senate to legalize same-sex marriage. Representative Karen Clark is expected to do introduce a similar bill in the Minnesota House of Representatives, and Dayton has already stated his support for same-sex marriage. Dayton and other same-sex marriage supporters defeated the proposed Minnesota Same-Sex Marriage Amendment in the November 6, 2012 election.[10]

Government shutdown

Dayton played a leading role in the summer 2011 shutdown of the Minnesota government after he and the Republican-controlled legislature failed to agree on a plan to close the $5 billion deficit in the state's biennial budget. Dayton had demanded tax increases on the state's highest earners, while Republicans refused to consider any hikes and insisted on spending cuts. The state government's non-essential services subsequently shut down on July 1, furloughing 23,000 state employees.[11]

Dayton defended his hardline stance against spending cuts, saying "most of the money the state collects doesn’t go to a bureaucracy. It goes to the people of Minnesota, who need services — education, health care and the like."[12] He has suggested that an all-cuts solution to the state's budget problem would fall excessively hard on the state's most vulnerable citizens.

United States Senate 2001-2007

Dayton served in the United States Senate from 2001-2007.[1]

Minnesota Auditor 1991-1995

Dayton was the Minnesota Auditor from 1991-1995.[1]



See also: Minnesota gubernatorial election, 2014

Dayton ran for re-election as Governor of Minnesota in 2014.[4] Dayton sought the Democratic nomination in the primary on August 12, 2014. The general election took place November 4, 2014.


See also: Minnesota gubernatorial election, 2010 and Gubernatorial elections, 2010

Dayton narrowly defeated Margaret Anderson Kelliher in the August 10 primary by a margin of 41.0% to 40.1%.

He defeated Tom Emmer (R), Farheen Hakeem (G), and Tom Horner (Independence) in the general election on November 2, 2010.

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Dayton is available dating back to 1998. Based on available campaign finance records, Dayton raised a total of $7,977,903 during that time period. This information was last updated on July 12, 2013.[13]

Mark Dayton's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 Governor of Minnesota* Not up for election $440,328
2010 Governor of Minnesota* Won $5,377,917
1998 Governor of Minnesota** Defeated $2,159,658
Grand Total Raised $7,977,903
*These funds represent a joint-ticket race with Lieutenant Governor Yvonne Prettner Solon. **These funds represent a joint-ticket race with Julie Jansen.


Ballotpedia collects information on campaign donors for each year in which a candidate or incumbent is running for election. The following table offers a breakdown of Mark Dayton's donors each year.[14] Click [show] for more information.


Dayton and his former wife, Alida Rockefeller Messinger, have two grown sons, Andrew and Eric.

Recent news

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See also

External links

Suggest a link

U.S. Senate


Political offices
Preceded by
Tim Pawlenty
Governor of Minnesota
2011 - present
Succeeded by