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View Full Version : Economics GOP's hypocrtical cash-and-trash strategy for the stimulus.


BigRedChief
02-09-2010, 08:25 PM
<TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=5 width=650><TBODY><TR><TD colSpan=2>GOP's cash-and-trash strategy
By: Lisa Lerer
January 28, 2010 04:41 AM EST
</TD></TR><TR><TD class=story vAlign=top colSpan=2>Congressional Republicans will make opposition to President Barack Obama’s 2009 stimulus plan a centerpiece of their 2010 campaign.

They’re plying reporters with polls raising doubts about the stimulus, demanding that Democrats say whether they still support the stimulus and declaring, as Minority Whip Eric Cantor did on the “Today” show Wednesday, that “the stimulus hasn’t worked.”

There’s just one catch: According to a tally kept by the White House, at least 65 congressional Republicans have touted the stimulus dollars that have flowed into their own states.

Georgia Rep. Phil Gingrey is one of them.

Gingrey calls the stimulus a “boonTIM-MAY!gle” and a “dismal failure” — and like all House Republicans, he voted against it last year. But when Cedartown, Ga., got $625,000 in stimulus funds to help build new sidewalks, Gingrey made sure he was on hand to present the city with an oversize check signed by “Uncle Sam.”

How does he explain the disconnect?

“The money’s going to be spent — if not in Georgia ... in Massachusetts, California and New Jersey,” Gingrey told POLITICO. “It would be unconscionable for me to stand in the way of that money.”

Not everyone thinks so — including some Republicans.

“Those who are doing that are still thinking that bringing home the bacon is going to get them elected,” said Max Pappas, spokesman for the conservative group FreedomWorks, which has played a leading role in the tea party movement. “I don’t think the fiscal conservatives who are at the center of the American political spectrum are going to be very impressed.”

“It’s pretty hypocritical for someone to be against the stimulus and then walk around handing out big checks,” said Andrew Roth, vice president of public affairs for the conservative anti-tax group Club for Growth. “I think Republicans who did that should be worried.”

In Florida, the Club for Growth is backing former state Speaker Marco Rubio over Florida Gov. Charlie Crist in the Republican Senate primary — and the stimulus is an issue in the race. Rubio attacked Crist on Wednesday for supporting the stimulus when it was being debated in Congress, saying that he’d “cut the legs out from under” the GOP by doing so.

But Rubio has said that he also would have accepted whatever stimulus funds would have helped Florida. And indeed, despite some early rumblings, every governor — Republican and Democrat — ultimately accepted stimulus funds.

Democratic Congressional Committee Chairman Chris Van Hollen says that puts the GOP in a jam.

“I think they’re going to have a hard time taking credit for something they voted against,” he said. “It will be very much a [campaign] issue.”

But Republicans say those attacks won’t pack much of a punch.

“No one disagrees that the stimulus included some worthy projects, but American taxpayers remember very clearly that this bill was sold with the promise of job creation,” said Paul Lindsay, a spokesman for the National Republican Congressional Committee. “Those same taxpayers know exactly who’s responsible for this trillion-dollar boonTIM-MAY!gle, which is why they continue to ask Democrats one question: ‘Where are the jobs?’”

A spokesman for Cantor, who has tried to direct stimulus funds to a high-speed rail line in his Virginia district, denied any disconnect between his local advocacy and national opposition to the $787 billion package.

“Eric Cantor has been fighting for high-speed rail for years, since well before President Obama came to Washington,” said spokesman Brad Dayspring. “The fact is that, despite Mr. Cantor’s years of support for high-speed rail, he knew then what most Americans know today: that the stimulus was a terribly misguided approach that wasted too much money and failed to create jobs — period.”

Republicans who’ve celebrated the stimulus funds after voting against the stimulus itself say they’re simply doing what’s best for their districts by getting a share of the money that would be spent anyway.

“Just because I voted against the stimulus doesn’t mean I shouldn’t recognize the merit achievement of an entity,” said Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), who voted against the stimulus but traveled to Bethlehem to present locals with a $2 million stimulus grant to build a new fire station.

Burr said that the fact that he’s personally awarded only one grant is “probably a condemnation of how ineffective the stimulus package is.”

Texas Rep. Pete Olson, whose district includes the Johnson Space Center, circulated a letter in October requesting that $3 billion in stimulus funds be redirected to NASA.

Olson said he was just helping the president choose the “right priorities” — which just so happen to be centered in his congressional district.

“The fact of the matter is that money has been given to the president to spend, and he hasn’t spent it in an appropriate manner,” said Olson. “If I had my druthers, I don’t want that money flowing. But the fact of the matter is the president has that money, and he’s been wasting it.”


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http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0110/32118.html

wazu
02-09-2010, 11:12 PM
“It’s pretty hypocritical for someone to be against the stimulus and then walk around handing out big checks,” [/URL]

If conservatives were to sit back and do nothing, all that would happen is their constituents would have their money confiscated by the Democrats who would re-distribute to their own districts. As long as my congressman voted against the boondogle, I am fine with him, after it is passed anyway, delivering to my district rather than everything being packaged and shipped to San Francisco.

BigRedChief
02-10-2010, 06:23 AM
If conservatives were to sit back and do nothing, all that would happen is their constituents would have their money confiscated by the Democrats who would re-distribute to their own districts. As long as my congressman voted against the boonTIM-MAY!le, I am fine with him, after it is passed anyway, delivering to my district rather than everything being packaged and shipped to San Francisco.As I said a bunch of hypocrites. Standing up with a group of local people with the big check like you were responsible for it. Thats politics. What about the words they are saying now? This will create jobs, this will help stimulate the local economy. When it was being debated they were saying it won't create a single job, its worthless etc....The current fanboy for the Republicans, Brown, on his first day said that the Stimulus hasn't created one job. We can debate how many its creatwed but its created at least one job. Clueless and hypocrites.

wild1
02-10-2010, 07:34 AM
This is kind of the opposite of the troop surge. The Republicans were massively in favor of a surge, and once it was put in place, it was a matter of weeks before the differences were apparent. How do we know it was the right idea? Because it worked. It got results.

And yet we still saw people like candidate Obama parsing statements on whether or not it worked and was a good idea or if he'd side differently on the surge if he had it to do over again.

When something worked, there's no disputing it. When you have to parse and tiptoe around and invent statistical categories and twist yourself into knots to try to point out ANY benefit WHATEVER, that's a pretty good clue that not even you believe what you are saying.

"This didn't work, which is exactly why we need more of it" seems to be the strategy. I would invite liberals to swing all day with that and see where it gets them.