February 21st, 2009
03:35 PM ET
3 years ago

Nation's governors convene in Washington

Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell is one of several governors in Washington.
Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell is one of several governors in Washington.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - "This country is facing an economic recession probably the single most challenging in any our lifetimes." With that, Pennsylvania Democratic Gov. Edward Rendell opened the annual meeting of the National Governors Association Saturday.

Most of the nation's governors are in Washington through Monday for a series of events that include at least two meetings with President Barack Obama.

During an introductory statement, Rendell, who chairs the NGA, touched on the importance of the $787 billion economic stimulus plan signed by President Obama to help states as they cope with the effects of the recession.

"The bill that was passed by both chambers and signed by the President isn't a perfect bill. But it's a bill that is of tremendous help to us," said Rendell.

Programming note: The following governors will appear on "State of the Union with John King" on Sunday: Haley Barbour, R-Mississippi, Deval Patrick, D-Massachusetts, Arnold Schwarzenegger, R-California, Brian Schweitzer, D-Montana.

Vermont Republican Gov. James Douglas, NGA vice chairman, added that each governor who accepts money has a responsibility to use it wisely. "I believe every governor should and will exercise due diligence to make sure that the acceptance of any federal resources is in the best interests of that state and its residents," Douglas said.

Investment in the country's infrastructure was the predominant theme during the opening remarks. Significant investment in health technology, alternative energy and broadband development were also mentioned as ways the United States can get back on steadier economic ground.

Rendell said a joint effort between Capitol Hill and the White House has resulted in a bill that will hopefully help turn around the economy while keeping an eye on tomorrow. "I think the President and Congress should be credited for doing things in this bill to look towards the future," Rendell said.

The nation's governors will have dinner with President Obama and Mrs. Obama Sunday evening at the White House. The governors are also scheduled to meet a final time with the President on Monday before departing for their respective states.


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soundoff (103 Responses)
  1. libby

    pardon the spelling, Actually, American. John, I agree with you. Those who do not agree with the package should not take part in it.

    February 21, 2009 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  2. Perusing-Through

    WELL STATED RAY FISHER:

    RAY's QUOTE: "If folks would begin thinking about the stimulus as a tool instead of a cure all, life would begin to stabilize. The stimulus must be accompanied by reforms in the financial, labor, energy, and technology sectors of our economy for long term success."

    February 21, 2009 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  3. Lush Limprick, the real RNC chairman!

    To all the repub governors complaining about the "pork" just refuse your bacon.

    Do not take the funds allocated to your state and demand it be removed from the total amount to be borrowed. If your state was going to get 20 B then refuse and reduce the 787 B to 767 B

    You will have done your share, altho, I am not sure how you will fare at election time.

    February 21, 2009 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  4. Ernie in

    Gov. Jindal of Louisiana is not going to put up with anyone's BS. He is a very intellegent man.

    February 21, 2009 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  5. Guess Who's Comming To Dinner

    Palin is going to be palling with Obama? Is she bringing Ayers with her or Rev Wright or the maybe she'll bring that corrupt husband Todd with her oh wait I forgot she'll probably bring Joe the plummer maybe while he's there at the White House he can find a real job more of his profession working on the sewer pipes I betcha

    February 21, 2009 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  6. Ivan

    I wish that there was no provision in the bailout package that allowed the state legislators to over rule the governor in accepting the federal money.
    Then I would like to see if those Republican Governors have the guts to reject the money, which they can now do, knowing that they will be over ruled by their state legislators.

    February 21, 2009 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  7. libs be dopes

    That should read...

    Arnold Schwarzenegger, RINO-California, acting Dem

    February 21, 2009 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  8. jt

    Obama is a harding working President I've ever seen at least he's trying in whatever ways it takes to fix the mess back created by Bush Chenney in fact Bush spent 2/3 of his Presidency on vacation, while country is in recession and two wars going on at the same time, Bush and Chenney should apologize the American people, They left without saying a word, what a shame.

    February 21, 2009 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  9. smiff

    DC is the biggest soup line in the world. Cant anyone Not keep their hand stuck out for a free-bee? Of course those who dont want any charity ALA the taxpayers are just dirty RAT REPUBLICAN BIGOTS!!! PALEEEESe..........ONLY IN AMERICA!!! LAND OF THE FREAK AND HOME OF THE NAVE !!!!!!!!!

    February 21, 2009 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  10. Larry

    TO: Proud to be an American

    Are you "thinking" or just reacting ?WE,that means everybody now and in the distant future,are going to be paying this money(that we don't have) back ,with interest.Even though the Republican governors really don't want to take this money they will have to,why you ask,because their states and citizens are going to be paying the money back,even if they don't take the money.Can you grasp this concept?Let me know,I'll try to simplify it even more for you.

    February 21, 2009 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  11. Judy from PA

    To: John and Proud to be an American,

    I assume both of you didn't accept the 2 checks from the Bush stimulus??

    February 21, 2009 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  12. Perusing-Through

    MORE REPUBLICAN HIPOCRISY!

    FACT #1: – GOP Gov. Boobi Jindal basically harassed Democratic lead Congress and specifically S.C. Congressman James Clyburn for federal stimulus support for his Katrina ravished Louisiana.

    FACT #2: – By the time the stimulus bill makes it through Congress and sign by President Obama, the Republican's evil emperor Lord Rush Limbaugh lassoes the Republican Governors, including Boobi into fear of taking the very dollars they lobbied to get. That makes Boobi and his GOP Governors both COWARDS and HYPOCRITICAL.

    February 21, 2009 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  13. Jean

    It is time that no one pays any of their bills.

    The government will pay all our bills.

    No more mortgage payments

    No more car payments

    No more phone bills

    No more electric bills

    No more gas bills

    Obama will pay all our bills

    February 21, 2009 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  14. Perusing-Through

    MORE REPUBLICAN HIPOCRISY!

    GOP Gov. Boobi Jindal basically harassed Dem. lead Congress and specifically S.C. Congressman James Clyburn for federal stimulus support for his Katrina ravished Louisiana. However, by the time the stimulus bill makes it through Congress and sign by President Obama, the Republican's evil emperor Lord Limbaugh lassoes the Republican Governors, including Boobi into fear of taking the very dollars they lobbied to get. That makes Boobi and his GOP Governors both COWARDS and HYPOCRITICAL.

    February 21, 2009 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  15. Only in America

    Who cares about costs? For the past 7 years were have been spending 1 billion a month in Iraq and Afghanistan, rebuilding their country and no one complained. Why didn't they speak up then?

    Now we want to focus on THIS country and spend a little on US and every Republican in sight is totally against it. But what do you expect from folks who already said they want Pres Obama to fail?

    They are truly anti-American and should be ashamed!

    February 21, 2009 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  16. Dawn

    President Obama invited the Mayors last week, and now he is speaking to the Governors. He is going to speak to both houses next week.

    I have the stimulus Bill saved, I seen that we are getting ready for the 21st century, Broadband grids, infrastuture, Military, energy, green jobs, science, education, health care. Extending unemployment.

    You know when people sign up for unemployment, they ask if you need food stamps. People don't realize, you need to eat and pay bills.

    I think it can work!

    In my home state of Pennsylvania, I heard on the news that Hershey is laying off about 6,000 men and women in their York Peppermint pattie division. It is moving south of the boarder.{Mexico}

    February 21, 2009 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  17. Mark, B'ham., Al.

    Anybody can speak out against this bill and still take the money for their state. First we do need building and infrastructure, but it should be to repair what we already have not building more highways and bridges to nowhere. We have neglected our current infrastructure for 40 years. Also I do not beleive the rest of the country should build new schools, that is local taxpayers responsibility. Our B'ham mayor came out to the suburban school my kids were attending while he was a County Commissioner and called the high schoolers a bunch of spoiled rich kids because they had the nice facilities and two football fields, basketball gyms, soccor fields and baseball diamonds (one to practice, one for games). Also the biggest hing against this so-called stimulus bill is the pork. When Lou Dobbs who is an independent but progressive calls 200 billion dollars pork, you know that amount if not more is pork. Also this bill dropped E-Verify requirements and cutting out the one year ban on H1-B Visas being allowed to be hired by banks being bailed out. And this bill was is suppose to get Americans working. Instead it will get illegal immigrants and bring in more foriegn workers for lower pay! We know that the democrats are in the pockets of the same special interest as you liberals accuse the republicans of working for.

    February 21, 2009 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
  18. Perusing-Through

    GOP Gov. Bobby Jindal and 49 other Governors ask President Obama and Democratic lead Congress for federal stimulus help for their states. Now that Congress and the President have provided the requested assistance, six GOP Governors including Jindal say they don’t want it. Have the GOP 6-pack turned it down in fear of conservative talk radio? If so, that makes Jindal and the GOP 6-pack COWARDS and HYPOCRITES.

    February 21, 2009 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  19. mw

    HUCKABEE AND SOME NEOCONS ON FOX ARE NOW MAKING FUN OF THE $13 THE WORKING FOLKS MAY GAIN ON THEIR PAY CHECKS. I DON'T KNOW WHY THAT IS SOMETHING TO MAKE FUN OF (EXCEPT THEY ARE CLUELESS NEOCONS).
    THE SOCIALISTIC HAND OUT I GOT FROM BUSH LAST HAND OUT WAS A WHOPPING $300--THAT COMES TO ABOUT $5.76 A WEEK.
    WHEN I GOT MY $300, I HAD JUST REACHED THE DONUT HOLE ON MY MEDICARE Rx AND MY PLAVIX WAS CONSIDERBLY MORE THAN THAT TWO FOR TWO MORE REFILLS IN 2008.
    SO FOR YOU NEOCONS WHO DON'T NEED THE EXTRA $13 A PAYDAY, SEND TO MEDICARE PATIENTS WHO CANNOT AFFORD THE HIGH PRICE OF DRUGS-YOU ALL WOULD NOT KNOW THE PRICE OF BRAND NAME AND GENERIC JUMPED SKY HIGH WHEN THE MEDICARE Rx PLAN KICKED IN. IT COVERS ABOUT 6 MONTHS FOR MOST OF US, BUT WE PAY PREMIUMS FOR 12 MONTHS AND FULL AMOUNTS FOR 6 MONTHS ON ALL DRUGS.

    February 21, 2009 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  20. ADA

    I which that all who can criticize Our President on the stimulius bill,can come up with a better one as of today.But all they can do is complain.Let the the man do his job ,I"m sure theres room for changes at least his not a lame duck.He's not only dealing with the U.S .but the world as a whole.

    February 21, 2009 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  21. Death of America by Obama

    Sean Delonas for President !!

    Ben Jealous,eat shait and diae.
    You fools always have to play the race card.

    February 21, 2009 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  22. kcob95

    I'm so sick of people calling this type of stuff welfare! I paid my taxes for years, federal/state/payroll/property-you name it. The fact that people have fallen on hard times and need some assistance, people want to label this type of assistance welfare so that those who don't associate with minorities can feel better. Stop the the antagonism with words like extreme, welfare, socialism, and my personal favorite-the liberal media (usually said by those in the media). We are all Americans and this country was built on assisting your neighbor as best you can. Let's stop placing each other into these stupid categories.

    February 21, 2009 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  23. Mark, B'ham., Al.

    Arnold is a republican in California, if the democtaic legislature in California had it s way their state income tax form would say send all that you did not send the federal government.

    February 21, 2009 08:40 pm at 8:40 pm |
  24. CeCe

    For the person that said those against the porkulus shouldn't take the money - That's fine except now you Dems think they're awful if they don't take the money. Afterall, that Dem in SC said it would hurt the black folks. I guess he doesn't realize white folks can also be poor too. Sad. Me thinks the Dems are more racists than others.

    No changes here I want to see!

    February 21, 2009 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  25. kelly g arizona

    I am in agreement with everyone who states that this stimulus bill is not the magic bullet. We need to be mindful of this spending and make sure that it is flexible enough for us to change course if it is not doing what's intended.

    I hope that our leaders will not follow the "stay the course" attitude of the last administration if things don't go as planned.

    February 21, 2009 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
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