Very interesting — sticking to principle to defend taxpayers can result in a big victory. Who knew? Certainly not the Republicans in DC, or so it seems. Gov. Mark Dayton, Democrat, sent off a letter to the MN Republicans today to let them know of his surrender.

“Despite my serious reservations about your plan, I have concluded that continuing the state government shutdown would be even more destructive for too many Minnesotans,” Dayton wrote in the letter. “Therefore, I am willing to agree to something I do not agree with – your proposal – in order to spare our citizens and our state from further damage.”

Dayton said accepting the offer, with conditions, would bridge a $1.4 billion gap between him and the Republican leadership without any more drastic cuts to to essential services. “If this gets resolved and gets Minnesota back to work in the next few days, then it doesn’t matter what people say about me,” Dayton said.

This is, to paraphrase VP Biden, a big deal. Minnesota isn’t exactly a red state, but the Republicans there forced a liberal governor’s hand while defending taxpayers from the predations of the state. Very well done.

Ed Morrissey, blogging from MN, notes that this is an almost total capitulation on Dayton’s part. The man’s actions had blocked fishing and there’s a looming beer shortage in his state. No wonder he finds himself over a barrel, so to speak.