links for 2009-02-23

  • “I have a number of responses to that argument,” Pawlenty said. “Minnesota ranks forty-sixth in terms of getting federal spending in relation to the amount of taxes paid — for every dollar we sent in to Washington, we get about 72 cents back. We’re a major payer of the federal government’s tabs, unlike many other states that I won’t mention. I say, when you’re paying to buy the pizza, it’s okay to have a slice. Now, if you were a liberal Democratic governor and you opposed military spending, are you not going to take National Guard funding? If you were a liberal who opposed No Child Left Behind, are you going to take federal funding in education? So I’m wondering why that standard is only being applied now to conservatives.”
    Tim Pawlenty is maturing as a national pol as is Bobby Jindahl. Watch out Sarah Palin.
    (tags: Tim_Pawlenty)
  • California Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger suggested that his party is out of touch with average Americans on the issue of health care.

    “You've got to listen to the people. If the nation is screaming out loud, ‘We need health care reform. We want to have universal health care. We want to have everyone insured. We want to bring the costs down. We want everyone to have access.’ I mean, that's what they want; that's what you do,” Schwarzenegger said on ABC’s “This Week.”

    Arguing that California Republicans were out of touch with the majority of Californians who wanted to raise taxes to fix the state’s budget crisis, Schwarzenegger said it is “the same nationwide.”

  • olorado is blowing kisses and singing love songs to California companies and talent, hoping to woo those fed up with the state's budget and political troubles.

    The Metro Denver Economic Development Corp. has taken to the skies, YouTube, snail mail and newspapers to tell Golden State execs that the grass is greener, the taxes are lower and the business climate is better in the Centennial State.

    The flirtatious $95,000 advertising campaign has garnered national media attention.

    It also comes as other states – such as Arizona, Nevada and Utah – also seek to capitalize on California's woes to lure jobs and workers.
    Many businesses will.

  • An interesting ramification from yesterday's news that President Obama will not seek to repeal the Bush tax cuts, and wait for them to expire at the end of 2010 — the justification for the policy shift is, "Officials determined that seeking to raise the taxes earlier during a recession was a bad idea."

    Many economists were saying they didn't expect the recession to end this year, and that 2010 was looking pretty bad, too. I, among others, suspect that if the economy is still in the dumps in November 2010, the midterm elections will be awful for incumbents — and there are more Democratic incumbents than Republican ones.

  • But left unsaid by the Administration is that the goal it set for the federal budget deficit, $513 billion by 2013, is nearly $60 billion higher than the highest budget deficit recorded during the presidency of George W. Bush. During the presidential campaign, Obama called the lack of spending restraint during the Bush years irresponsible, yet his Administration championed the $787 billion economic stimulus bill, and has proposed a $275 billion housing rescue program, all on top of the $700 billion Wall Street bailout that candidate Obama voted for and President Obama is now administering. That is a record of spending that would make George W. Bush blush, and which undercuts the president's new found fondness for budgetary austerity.
    Obama will also have to propose either a dramatic increase in taxes or an equally dramatic reduction in spending. With the appetite he has displayed for federal spending in the first month of his presidency, it is little wonder which he will likely choose.
  • Former eBay Ceo Meg Whitman held her first big press conference as a GOP gubernatorial candidate today..and sidestepped deteails and follow up questions on abortion, state spending cuts, immigration and whether she'll release her taxes.

    But she did have something to say about San Francisco: ''We need to secure our borders…ultimately, we must hold employers responsible for hiring…we must take a very hard look at sanctuary cities…what's happening in San Francisco and Los Angeles is just wrong,'' she said.

    It was an interesting presser, not only for what was said, but for what wasn't. Whitman was accompanied by former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who endorsed her, and Rep. Darrell Issa of Vista, who is also backing her bid.
    Meg Whitman is a rookie and hs not formed legitimate positions on the issues.

    (tags: Meg_Whitman)
  • Two wealthy Silicon Valley titans courted support for their 2010 gubernatorial campaigns Saturday before riled-up party activists angry over taxes, fed up with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and distrustful of moderate candidates.

    So state Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner promised at a news conference that he would never raise taxes as governor.

    And former eBay CEO Meg Whitman carefully explained to more than 900 state party delegates why she registered as a decline-to-state voter from 1998 to 2007 before re-registering as Republican.

  • Likening California's budget troubles to an earthquake, Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Sunday defended his decision to raise taxes and said his party's leaders in Washington should be "team players" with President Barack Obama.

    And if that means violating the GOP's principles, he said, so be it.

    "They should make an effort to work together and to find what is best for the people, because by derailing everything, it's not going to help anybody, and it creates instability and insecurity," Schwarzenegger said in an appearance on ABC's "This Week with George Stephanopoulos."

  • California Republicans cast about for ideas to revive their ailing party on Saturday, but struggled to define a clear vision for expanding their appeal beyond the dwindling ranks of older white conservatives.

    At a glum gathering of Republican faithful, GOP leaders hewed to the party's traditional call to scale back government, even as many voters demand just the opposite to stop the economy's downward slide.

    At the same time, the GOP leaders lamented their party's failure to win over more women, Latinos, African Americans and younger voters, a shortcoming that points toward more defeats ahead for a party long relegated to firm minority status in California.

    "Right now the party is pretty aimless," said state Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner, a candidate for governor in the party's June 2010 primary. "It's got no strong leadership, and that's got to be fixed."