February 22nd, 2009
09:48 AM ET
8 years ago

Barbour to pass on some stimulus funds, Patrick wants them


Govs. Barbour and Patrick clash over the stimulus measure.

(CNN) - Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, a Republican, reiterated Sunday he will reject some of the funds in the massive $787 billion stimulus measure if it forces his state to spend its own money in the future.

Speaking on CNN's State of the Union, Barbour specifically cited an unemployment reform package included in the stimulus bill calling for an increase in benefits as evidence his state would have to pick up the tab on the provision in a couple of years.

Related: Some GOP govs say stimulus may hurt

"If we were to take the unemployment reform package that they have, it would cause us to raise taxes on employment when the money runs out and the money will run out in a couple of years and then we'll have to raise the unemployment insurance tax which is literally a tax on employment," Barbour said.

Related: Schwarzenegger calls stimulus 'terrific'

"I mean, we want more jobs," he also said. "You don't get more jobs by putting an extra tax on creating jobs."

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, a Democrat, appearing with Barbour, disagreed with the Mississippi governor’s assertion but acknowledged that states will have to be prudent about what to do once the stimulus money runs out. For now, Deval said he is prepared to accept all the money allotted to his state in the measure, specifically citing its effects on improving the nation's infrastructure.

"Certainly in Massachusetts, people want their roads repaired and want bridges repaired and want a clean energy strategy and alternatives and real alternatives and want us to be candid with them about those needs, he said. "Whether governors say they will or won't take this or that as part of the stimulus bill, in some ways, is irrelevant. People want that help."

soundoff (351 Responses)
  1. Butch Dillon

    As long as Barbour can feed his fat face everything will be fine and dandy. And as it appears he's firmly established in that habit, Mississippi can look forward to prosperous times while the rest of us sink with the ship. It's RECALL TIME down south!

    February 22, 2009 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  2. Larry

    Obama and the Democrats in Congress are KILLING THE CASH COW so they can have steak TODAY .TODAY,TODAY,TODAY,that's all Democrats can think about---Gov. Haley Barbour,is doing his JOB,looking toward the future,if Bush and Congress had been doing their job,we would not be in this situation now:

    When are you going to put Congress under the same microscope you do the bankers? People like Barney Frank,Chris Dodd, and Maxine Waters forced the banks to make loans to people that should not have qualified, then continued to protect the practice when everyone saw the problem coming six years ago. Now Frank, Waters and others are screaming the loudest at the banks for doing what they were forced by Congress to do. Quite honestly, I have more faith in the banks, as bad as they are, than I do this Congress.

    A New York Times article published September 11, 2003 described an emerging crisis with Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae and partisan resistance to proposed enhanced oversight of these two entities:
    “The Bush administration today recommended…….a new agency would be created within the Treasury Department to assume supervision of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac…….which together have issued more than $1.5 trillion in outstanding debt…….

    “These two entities — Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — are not facing any kind of financial crisis,’ said Representative Barney Frank of Massachusetts, the ranking Democrat on the Financial Services Committee. ‘The more people exaggerate these problems, the more pressure there is on these companies, the less we will see in terms of affordable housing.”

    Democrat Barney Frank,Chris Dodd, and Maxine Waters caused this because they did not plan for the future.

    February 22, 2009 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  3. Todd

    So the good governor of Mississippi won't take the stimulus money? Fine, his constituents will still get their share through lower taxes. That is the 'meat and potatos" of this bill and it appears that some of you posters don't realize that.

    Elmer, what the heck are you talking about? You tell others to learn their facts before they comment, but it is apparent you didn't take your own advice.

    I live in Illinois, a state with a very high unemployment rate,, and to top it off I live in the city with the highest rate in the state. We need the benefits this bill will bring and the jobs it will create, Elmer says the layoffs will come. Guess whos right? Not Elmer.

    February 22, 2009 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  4. American citizen

    The people of Mississippi should demand the governor put his paycheck into the public coffer as well as his state funded insurance premium. Some of it might trickle down to help the people out of work. I wonder for how long the governor would refuse federal $$ once he has no income, no hope for any income, and his family has no insurance. I bet he would be singing a different tune very quickly.

    February 22, 2009 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  5. CBH

    If Gov Barbour decides that he will not accept some or all of Federal funds available to him, then he should be accountable to the people of Mississippi. This type of political postering does little to improve his state. Maybe this is what the people of Mississippi want? After all, he is a elected Governor of that State, and it is fair to assume that the people of Mississippi must approve of what is proposing for imcoming stimulus funds.

    February 22, 2009 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  6. Sparky

    Boy, them Republicans sure watch out for the people that elected them don't they? (sarcasm)

    February 22, 2009 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  7. Ray

    can Virginia have the money instead? Thanks BarbourShop

    February 22, 2009 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  8. Larry, Apex, North Carolina

    Elmer: "...the layoffs will come because of this stimulus..."? Uhh...Elmer...the layoffs have already happened-BEFORE the stimulus! You say that corporation profits will put money in the pockets of the Democrats...what are you talking about? Where do you get your information? Perhaps, El, you should learn YOUR facts before you comment!

    February 22, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  9. Mo Ahmed

    Republican Governors who do not support stimulus bill should not accept ANY money – they are happy to take 98% of the money. This is the usual political hypocritical talk on the part of Republicans. They criticise FDR and suggest the WW II was the cause of recovery – WW II was taxpayer money fuelling the economy – not Bush 43's generous $ 1.2 trillion tax cut for the uppermost 2% of the Great American Working Class over 7 years.

    February 22, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  10. Bridg

    I'm not sure what to call these Repug Governors: Bafoons or Evil Souls. How can a Governor of one of the poorest states in the nation reject much-needed funds on political grounds??? It truly sickens me. Oh well, who cares, since the zombies of that state will vote his fat a s s into office no matter what. I hope this fat phony runs for POTUS in 2012.

    February 22, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  11. tim rogers

    Why stop at stimulus money? The governor of Mississippi should turn down all federal funding of all types. After all , the state is such an economic powerhouse on it's own. They can go it alone, and stay at the bottom without the help of the Feds. They have been doing it for decades so they certainly know how.

    February 22, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  12. Randy

    how much money would every working family receive that makes under 250,000.00 from a 787 billion dollar stimulus if that amount were divided between them. That is what will stimulate the economy.
    Put the money where it is needed, those who are still spending on cars , homes, remodeling....that will put money back in the economy and stimulate jobs. Not in the hands of the rich companys and their CEOs who started this mess. After all isn't it tax dollars used for the stimulus, the poor don't make enough to pay taxes and the rich make too much, so who's money is it anyhow!

    February 22, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  13. Vinny NYC

    I think it's the governor's call to decide whether or not to accept all or part of the stimulus funds.

    However, I would say that any governor not accepting part of the funds would be cheating his or her own citizens unless there is some way to exempt his people from part of the federal income tax. I mean, the stimulus will be paid for through the income tax (most likely higher rates passed down to future generations). Unless there is some mechanism to exampt future Mississippians from the increased federal taxation, it basically means that Mississippi will be rejecting something that they will be paying for anyway.

    February 22, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  14. Bruce

    It looks like this Governor doesn't see the need to help the millions of Americans who have been thrown out of their jobs by the Republican W.Bush mismanagement and bankruptcy of America. Trillions in debt and W.is off to retirement in Texas. Who votes for these Republican liars and corrupt carpet bagers anyway?

    February 22, 2009 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  15. Dave

    Once you deduct the votes of the unemployed, the illegal's who voted, the welfare voters and the non high school graduates Obama got about 20% of the remaining voters in the election. Probably 5% of those votes were Hollywood liberals. Amazing country we live in. All the rest of us will pay dearly for these so called stimulus dole outs.

    February 22, 2009 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  16. JSU-TIGER99

    I am from Mississippi and now I live in CALI, I think the Gov of MS need to take the money the only reason they are not doing so is because they want to run for President in 2012, Alot of people is wait to see if the plan work and than they will say it work because Obama is White and if it fail he will be call BLACK. If your state need help take the money and do what need to be done with it. I am glad the GOV of CALI said he will take the money if no other governor want it.

    February 22, 2009 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
  17. Steve

    Notice that Barbour does not exhibit qualms about taking any of the extra federal money per se, just those funds which would fund programs that would eventaully be paid for by the people who vote for him. Was he one of the governors who made grandiose statements about declining all funds from the stimulus package? Mississsippi has long been behind other states in terms of health, education and other benefits, but Barbour himself seems to be doing just fine.

    February 22, 2009 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  18. Marc

    Many of us didn't vote for Haley. We saw that he was nothing more than Washington lobbyist who has done nothing for the ordinary citizen, but everything for his corporate clients.

    The first bill he signed after Katrina was a bill authorizing casinos to biuld on land. Not to help the citizens of the coast. Later, he re-directed over $500 million from block grants meant to rebuild homes and wants to deepen the Gulf Channel to be able to accomodate larger ships.

    He is a corporate whore, and a shameless divider.

    February 22, 2009 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  19. Forgive and Share

    Unfortunately, the nation is at the mercy of evil politics. President Obama should redistribute the funds amongst those states that will make the best use of it.

    And Unfortunately, a gullible electorate can only learn after a great deal of pain. Come election time, the people will root out the remaining GOP for keeping them depressed.

    February 22, 2009 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  20. Grew up in MS

    this is only walfare to those you have never had to struggle and have no idea what it is like to be without for one reason or another.

    Walfare is a way to help others.....but not to stay there...

    February 22, 2009 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  21. Proud Mississippian

    Gov. Barbour is only governor to RIGHTLY REFUSE to put his state in debt to take Obama's bailout crap plan. It's absurd to expect my children who are 3 and 8 to inherit TRILLIONS of dollars in debt that they'll still be paying years from now when they grow up and start working! –If you loose a job, GET ANOTHER ONE- WORK AND WORK until you find one--dont sit on your butt waiting on a handout!

    THANK GOD Mississippi's governor had the guts to tell Obama no....
    Eventually all you democrats who voted for Obama will know that they made the wrong decision back in November!

    February 22, 2009 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  22. Jason S.

    How does Governor Barbour expect to close his state's budget deficit without the stimulus funds? He'll either have to raise taxes or take the stimulus package, as is. All this posturing he's doing is rather insincere, given the alternative.

    February 22, 2009 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  23. Rick

    What don't you deficit spending folks get? Borrowing from Peter to give to Paul is what created this monster in the first place, right along with good ol' American greed and the dissolution of moral absolutes. Ya'll are far to inclined to keep stealing from ALL of our children in an effort to erase our own generation's mistakes. Nature has a way of correcting itself which at times seems brutal; I think there's an analogy here.

    February 22, 2009 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  24. Colorado Cowboy

    I sincerely hope these Republican governors stay the course on their political beliefs that accepting the stimulus monies from the Fed is a bad decision. Let the voters in those states decide in the next state election whether their governors were right. My own belief is that after the next election, we will have fewer Republican governors.

    February 22, 2009 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  25. Joan , Ontario

    Since the majority of Republican mayors and even some Republican governors supported the stimulus plan and really want the badly needed money to help their own people, it shows the disconnect between the Republican leaders and the people on the front lines. Perhaps the Republican leaders should have let the senators and congressmen vote their consciences instead of forcing them to vote party policy. That's what true democracy is supposed to be.

    February 22, 2009 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
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