December 3rd, 2008
02:50 PM ET
10 years ago

RGA chairman warns Obama against bailouts

Sanford was elected RGA chairman last month in Miami.

Sanford was elected RGA chairman last month in Miami.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The chairman of the Republican Governor's Association wrote to President-elect Barack Obama on Tuesday, urging him to steer clear of industry bailouts and pressing for conservative solutions to the ailing economy.

In the letter, South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford thanked Obama for taking time to meet with him and the rest of the nation's governors in Philadelphia on Tuesday, and promised to work with the new administration to confront the country's economic woes.

But he expressed "earnest concerns with the direction some in Washington, D.C. seem to be headed with the recent so-called 'economic recovery efforts.'"

Alluding to the failure of some Wall Street investment firms and the weakness of the domestic automobile industry, Sanford wrote that "we must be wary of the moral hazard present in the idea of bailing out the private of public sector - for what in some cases were poor decisions."

Sanford, who has long pressed the Republican party to return to its small government principles, proceeded to outline four proposals to revitalize the economy: keeping taxes low, expanding international trade beginning with approval of the Colombia Free Trade Agreement, preventing the expansion of union power by not enacting "card check" legislation, and slashing government spending.

Sanford's spokesman Joel Sawyer said the note was officially written in his capacity as South Carolina's governor, not as president of the RGA, telling CNN there is "a broad degree of consensus from GOP governors on the general themes, but not every governor agrees with every point."

soundoff (150 Responses)
  1. JuanM


    Good comment. I guess no one should dare question the idiot Bush or your messiahs disgusting bailout of large corporations. You lefties and repubs are all the same. Nothing is changing and nothing is going to change. The government is taxing the hell out of us, giving billions to large corporations and then that same government doesn't pay its own bills. I guess no one should question the all knowing, all powerful government. Keep drinking the kool-aid.

    A Proud supporter of THE US Constitution, the real law of the land.

    December 3, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  2. Hopeful for Tomorrow

    @CD from CO - You do know that the $75/hour figure for the UAW employees is not accurate, don't you? It's actually closer to $25-30.

    December 3, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  3. Vicki5

    People may have short memories, but not that short, for crying out loud.

    December 3, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  4. Cindy

    The bailout will not be a blank check. It comes with conditions. And with that said, the US auto industry better get it's act together and start making better cars.

    The US cannot afford to have all industries closed in the US. Especially not the car industry. So some Japanese companies have plants here... they're still Japanese companies. They have no allegience to stay here. It's time we got serious about our heavy industries. And keeping the US car industry from going belly up is a logical step.

    December 3, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  5. The Lorax

    Bailouts are a bad idea. Let the market fix itself. In the long run it will do more good. Help those below the poverty line only.

    December 3, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  6. Marv...

    I'm from South Carolina and Gov. Sanford is a failure in the area of public administration. He was voted twice one of the worst Governors in the US. He's a hypocrite when it comes to public education and his only answer to any problem is lower taxes for the wealthy. The low tax thing hasn’t worked for quite sometime now, but that does stop the GOP from that tired old chant. Hey, they thought that drill baby drill was a real energy policy. The Universities and Colleges in South Carolina are counting the days when Gov. Sanford leaves office. Our State (SC) has been devastated economically by the loopholes in free trade and Sanford sets quietly.

    Where the heck does he get off giving someone else a warning on how to manage? It’s almost like George Bush telling Obama how to be President. The humor in that is over the top.

    December 3, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  7. Farnk, Las Vegas

    So giving the Big 3 a LOAN is wrong while we "GIVE" the banks and other financial institutions free money who don't have a plan and still pay high salaries to the officers who put them in trouble. This is the GOP's solution? Talk about being out of touch! These people have no idea what a loss of the Big 3 would be to country, not only the 3 million plus jobs, but a strong financial country Must manufacture it's own cars! These people need to learn the reality of this situation. The foreign car companies are experiencing the same downturn is sales as the Big 3, so it's not the product, it's the economy stupid. Japan has been helping their auto companies to the tune of $56B, why, because a strong financial country Must produce it's own cars. this isn't rocket science and it isn't a bailout, it's a LOAN. Get with the program or be prepared to watch the GOP get smaller and smaller to match their small minds.

    December 3, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  8. Dave

    Good! Someone with some sanity. No one should ever vote for anyone in Congress that voted for the bailout bill. The robbery of America has begun and there is no stopping. Think the new Treasury Secretary will reign it in? Not a chance. Geithner is licking his chops.

    December 3, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  9. zzzzzz

    He should have been writing letters eight years ago.

    December 3, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  10. mfelder

    The only solution you Republicans seem to have is lower government, lower taxes, lower capital gains. I don' t hear nothing new.

    December 3, 2008 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  11. Sharon Plainfield NJ

    Just keep in mind without the bail or some kind of a plan the auto companies will lose millions of jobs. The auto worker, car dealerships and the suppliers. Also there will be benefits cuts that would hurt the retirees. No matter what decison they make people are hurting. President Obama will have to take a long hard look into this problem. And the Ceo's will have to come up a realistic plan.

    December 3, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  12. z

    Time for this Gov to move to Alaska with Palin. I guess we can build our roads and infrastructure with no tax money. What happens when there are no more taxes to cut anymore?

    As for preventing unions...I guess he is still upset that the South Lost the war and slaves are free because all the cheap labor is gone.

    The poor decisions were mostly by all the polictians that work for the lobbylists. Maybe instead of reducing the size of our government...we should reduce the size of these power hungry mega's better to have small and medium companies than these hugh corporations. Small companies will not theathen to move out of state or country compared to the big boys.

    The bigger the banks got the worst our financial issues continue to grow. Bring back the community banks who care about their area that they do business in and live and then have only one central bank....The US Treasury.

    December 3, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  13. JuanM

    Dave in NYC

    Good comment about taxes, however your messiah, the all knowing all wonderful Obama is now having "second thoughts" on the windfall profits tax for big oil and gas. Hahahahaha...what else is this guy going to lie about-He sounds like Bush. Of course they didn't have a press conference to notify the voting puplic about it. This gem was noticed when the wording just disappeared from the transition teams website. I guess this is more openness.

    So let's get this straight. He approves of giving billions to large corporations and then, without telling anyone, decides to cancel his campaign promise of taxing big oil. Yeah...this is "Change" we just had eight years of. Once again, more proof that the Dems and Repubs are the same.

    December 3, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  14. Brina

    The same 4 talking points of the about some new ideas because doing things the republicans way for the last 8 years is what got us in this mess.

    December 3, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  15. Randy, San Francisco

    Where has Sanford been these last 8 years, meditating in a cave like a monk in the dark ages? Economists and financial experts from both sides of the political spectrum agree that the econony needs an immediate jolt. Sanford should join the bipartisan effort to prevent a financial disaster and not start a premature GOP mid-term or presidential campaign.

    December 3, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  16. Kate, Atlanta

    "conservative solutions" – is this guy INSANE??????? that's what got us into this mess. This guy needs to crawl back under his own little rock and work on state issues. He's NOT ready for primetime!

    December 3, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  17. HSNP

    Don't listen Barack. They're setting you up!!!

    December 3, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  18. M Aligwekwe

    Gov Sanford
    Enough is enough, you cannot eat your cake and have it. You and G Bush, the Repub right wingers distroyed this economy for the past eight years and yet you have the audacity to issue stupid instruction/advise to people's PE Obama. Do you have any shame at all for what you and your repubs have done to this economy for the past eight years. I will advise you remove the big log in your eyes first and worry not about the infinitecimal size of sand in another's eye. The best way to start off for 2012 is still not being an old chip of the stupid policies that is only good enough to distroy our economy.
    I know you are one of those islanders of true Americans and unpatriotic Americans, your believe any way, we want to be one Americans built in oneness, strenght and power to achieve a common goal

    December 3, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  19. james

    Where have all these " fiscally conservatives" been the last several years ??? Now that Bush is "beyond" unpopular, they are everywhere.

    December 3, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  20. RP Michigan

    Taking money out of the economy through higher taxes and trade barriers just doesn't make sense even though the Obamanation somehow thinks they can do more with less. The problems the past 8 years is that Bush did not follow conservatism but became a Democrat Lite. The Democrats have been in charge of the Congress the past two years...where were their economy changing bills?

    December 3, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  21. FJ from Atlanta

    Danny, OH December 3rd, 2008 3:19 pm ET

    Where was this guy the last 8 years?

    100% Agreed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    December 3, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  22. Cole

    i don't understand how the same people who played a heavy roll in getting us into this mess would have the AUDACITY to try and threaten an administration that hasn't even come into effect. If P-E Obama caves to these dudes, I will be very disappointed. i am all for bipartisanship, but please P-E Obama hold to your promises and beliefs. Sanford has some bigger fish to fry in SC. He should be dealing with his crashing economy and social and moral problems there first. And....Mr Perry of TEXAS should realize that this is the end of Rethuglican rule in our state. He should be crafting some type of plan for keeping reigns of power for the Rethugs instead of try to box in the incoming Prez!!!

    December 3, 2008 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  23. David

    It seems as though Stanford did not get the memo that the old republican concept of just being against anything that democrats are for, and having no viable solutions themselves, along with the smoke and mirrors politics of saying one thing(less spending/smaller government/family values/ethics), and doing another($10 trillion deficit/lies/deceptions/moral and criminal crimes against humanity), is why Americans are kicking them out of OUR government, state after sate after state, along with being rejected by the rest of our WORLD.

    December 3, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  24. HA

    Go Away!!

    December 3, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  25. Jim D

    Rings pretty hollow given that idiots in his own party got us into this mess.

    December 3, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
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