OK, I’ll admit it. I couldn’t stay awake for all the State of the Union last night and Governor McDonnell’s response, even from our own House of Delegates chamber.
(ed. note — I’ve never met a President in my life and yet I am friends with three people who have given SOTU responses on national television)
I did peruse Governor McDonnell’s remarks in today’s RTD. Sounded like standard stuff — get government off people’s backs, reduce taxes, off-shore drilling, charter schools, etc., etc. Nothing terribly controversial or very new.
I noted from the text of his speech that McDonnell specifically criticized the President’s “stimulus plan” from 2009. Of course, that stimulus money was used by the General Assembly in a bipartisan manner to fill our budget gaps last year. But that’s not the issue.
What I find fascinating is that the Governor — while criticizing the President’s 2009 stimulus plan — has recently prescribed the exact same elixir for Virginia, i.e. having government jump-start the economy by spending money.
The new Governor’s ”jobs plan” announced on Tuesday consists of AT LEAST $50 million in new spending, in addition to the usual tax credits for preferred industries. This spending goes to the following “core priorities” of Virginia government:
– the Virginia Tourism Council for new television ads
– the Virginia Wine Promotion Fund for promoting Virginia wines
– the Motion Picture Opportunity Fund for ……. making movies?
If a Democrat had proposed this new spending, he would have been ridiculed from one end of the Capitol to another. But now we have a Republican Governor telling us we “need to spend money to make money.” (that’s a quote from Monday’s speech by the Governor to the Assembly).
Umm, isn’t that exactly why President Obama is being criticized? And how is this Virginia stimulus not deficit spending, since our new Governor has failed to give any details for actually cutting the state budget?
(I’ll say one thing for Democrats. At least when we’re spending the public dollar, we’re doing it on robust things like bridges and highways. Not wine tastings).
So we have a new Governor proposing a Virginia stimulus plan one day, then criticizing the President for the Federal stimulus plan the next day. Each one based on deficit spending.
As Alanis Morrissette would say — isn’t it ironic?