March 28th, 2009
12:34 PM ET
5 years ago

Sen. Gregg slams Obama’s budget

Sen. Judd Gregg says Obama's budget is excessive.
Sen. Judd Gregg says Obama's budget is excessive.

(CNN) - Sen. Judd Gregg said the proposals in President Obama’s budget “represent an extraordinary move of our government to the left.”

“It is our opinion that this plan spends too much, taxes too much and borrows too much,” said Gregg, R-New Hampshire, in the weekly Republican address.

“The president to his credit is not trying to hide this; in fact he is very forthright in stating that he believes that by greatly expanding the spending, the taxing and the borrowing of our government, this will lead us to prosperity,” he said.

Gregg said he believes the way to run a sound government is by “working on limiting the growth of government” in a manner that is sustainable.

Gregg said he appreciates the president’s efforts but was concerned about where they would take the country.

“Our nation has an exceptional history of one generation passing on to the next generation a more prosperous and stronger country, but that tradition is being put at risk,” he said.

Obama chose Gregg as his pick for commerce secretary, after New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson withdrew his nomination. Gregg later withdrew his name, citing "irresolvable conflicts" over the administration's stimulus bill and the upcoming 2010 census.

Full text of Republican address after the jump

Full transcript of Senator Gregg’s address:

“Hello, I’m Judd Gregg, Senator from New Hampshire. We all know these are difficult times. People are worried about keeping their jobs, paying their bills, the value of their homes and the cost of sending their kids to college. It’s hard.

“Thus I appreciate, as do all Americans, the efforts being made by our President and his seriousness about addressing these issues.

“But what concerns many of us are his proposals in the budget he recently sent to the Congress that dramatically grow the size and cost of government and move it to the left.

“It is our opinion that this plan spends too much, taxes too much and borrows too much.

“You may have heard this before that the budget of the President spends too much, taxes too much and borrows too much.

“What do we mean? Well, let me give you a few examples.

“In the next five years, President Obama’s budget will double the national debt; in the next ten years it will triple the national debt.

“To say this another way, if you take all the debt of our country run up by all of our presidents from George Washington through George W. Bush, the total debt over all those 200-plus years since we started as a nation, it is President Obama’s plan to double that debt in just the first five years that he is in office.

“He is also planning to spend more on the government as a percentage of our economy than at any time since World War II.

“His budget assumes the deficit will average $1 trillion dollars every year for the next 10 years and will add well over $9 trillion dollars in new debts to our children’s backs.

“He also is proposing the largest tax increase in history, much of it aimed at taxing small business people who have been, over the years, the best job creators in our economy. And further, he is proposing a massive new national sales tax on your electric bill. So that every time you turn on a light switch, in your house, you will be hit with a new tax - and it averages over $3,000 per household.

“These are staggering numbers and represent an extraordinary move of our government to the left.

“The President to his credit is not trying to hide this; in fact he is very forthright in stating that he believes that by greatly expanding the spending, the taxing and the borrowing of our government, this will lead us to prosperity.

“Here of course is where we differ. We believe you create prosperity by having an affordable government that pursues its responsibilities without excessive costs, taxes or debt. That it is the individual American who creates prosperity and good jobs, not the government.

“We believe that you create energy independence not by sticking Americans with a brand new national sales tax on everyone’s electric bill, but by expanding the production of American energy, such as environmentally sound off-shore drilling, nuclear power, wind, solar while also conserving more.

“We also believe you improve everyone’s health care not by nationalizing the health care system and putting the government between you and your doctor, but by assuring that every American has access to quality health insurance and choices in health care.

“We believe that you run a sound and affordable government not by running up the national debt to historic levels and unsustainable levels while over-taxing working Americans and spending as if there is no tomorrow, but rather by working on limiting the growth of government in a manner that is affordable not only today but for the next generation through limiting spending and addressing core issues like the cost of entitlements.

“Our nation has an exceptional history of one generation passing on to the next generation a more prosperous and stronger country, but that tradition is being put at risk. The dramatic move to the left and the massive increase in the size and cost of the government, proposed by the budget of President Obama, will lead to an immense national debt that not only threatens the value of the dollar and puts at risk our ability to borrow money to run the government. But it will also place our children at a huge disadvantage as they inherit this debt which will make their chances of success less than those given to us by our parents. It is not right for one generation to do that to another generation.

“Rather, we believe that if you properly steward the responsibilities of the government, if you do not spend too much, if you do not tax too much, if you do not borrow too much, we can leave our children a better nation where they will have even greater opportunity for prosperity, peace and freedom.

Thank you for taking the time to listen, and have a great weekend.”


Filed under: Judd Gregg
soundoff (175 Responses)
  1. Bill

    First of all Mr. Gregg, I'd like to thank you for declining the nomination to be on President Obama's cabinet. You certainly have a gift with words, if in fact they are yours. Slick words singing the same old republican song. But you can't hide your and your party's determined desire to stay with what we know to be the failed policies of the past 8 years. Flow down economic did not work. Primarily because those who benefited from the tax cuts decided to keep their monies rather than invest and crerate more jobs. The created wealth GIVEN to them by W and company did not flow down as we were told. It only made them richer while the MIddle Class American grew poorer.

    March 28, 2009 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  2. Helen, NY

    This is very true. Those who say Senator is Judd Gregg is opportunist and criticize him are out of their mind. They must be waiting for hand-outs from Obama and do not want to work hard. Even the economists from Europe and and other parts of the world disagree on this policy from Obama. It shows he does not care to borrow money and spend it to expand his Government and socialism. Common man on the street will go bankrupt. Watch out.

    March 28, 2009 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  3. JD

    What is wrong with you people? What is wrong with someone saying "I recognize the economy is in turmoil, and given my expertise, I fundamentally disagree with the approach you are about to employ"???

    Suddenly all of you comment posters are experts on the economy? With your misspelled words and your kool-aid "I pray for Obama LOLOL!" statements? This man is regarded as an economic and financial expert - when you slam him, you not only look like you have no idea what yu're talking about, but you also slam Obama's judgement in selecting this man.

    March 28, 2009 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  4. AncientRiver

    All well and good for him to criticize, but show us the beef! . Let's see an actual Republican budget and the sums and programs they would choose to cut or support. We can all compare them side by side, have a real discussion and decide on our future then. If they have no ideas, mere platitudes will not save the economy and we have to go with the people who are acting like adults and making actual plans which would be the democrats.

    March 28, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  5. j stack

    If he had joined the team maybe he could have made a differance

    March 28, 2009 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  6. Claudette

    VOTE GREGG OUT AT RE-ELECTION. At a time when our country needs to be united, this man like many other puppets has intently caused uproar. We will not put up with Congressmen and Senators who are in the pocket of the healthcare industry and big oil.

    March 28, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  7. Mike Roberts

    We need to stick to priorties. I really believe that President Obama is going to do what he and the other Dem's want whether it bankrupts our country or not. Just another politician putting everything on the backs of the American people. I would really support him if I did not see all of this arguing and everyone saying "trust me"

    March 28, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  8. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    OLD NEWS... he already said this beginning of the week

    March 28, 2009 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  9. sonofsanchez

    What do they know about economy? seriously.....

    March 28, 2009 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  10. A. Darton

    I don't give a darn what this two face creep has to say. New Hampshire should be ashame to call him their Senator. The reason he is not running for re-election is because he know he won't win, specially after showing no backbone when the Republicans forced him into backing out of that job with the Obama Administration. I'm can he did.

    March 28, 2009 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  11. Michael

    In 1980 we had Ragen enoomics then the S&L crash in the late 80s. Then, in 1994 we had the GOP – the party of big ideas by 1995 they were out of ideas. In the 2000s we had DUB and fellow Republicans who squandered a surplus, grow government and spending.

    Now, we have a President who has presented some concrete ideas and can articulate them in meningful way and has a budget that includes all of america's cost with real numbers for evaluation. So, if there are Repuplicans who have some real plans or concrete hope they bring them forward for debate the country needs fresh ideas. Just stop the whinning.

    I am tired of seeing crouchy old republicans like Bill Bennit, who doesn't know a big idea if it hit him in the head, whinning and compling on TV. Bill bring forth a compreshensive plan with concrete numbers.

    March 28, 2009 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  12. yen

    J. Gregg had the opportunity to work with Obama and make a difference. But He chose not to become an active participant. He chose to stay out and criticize. Is he going to say he cares for America? What a great pretender. Just shut up and go.

    March 28, 2009 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  13. Zac, Atlanta

    Remember when times were good, and no one complained about two wars at a trillion bux a piece, and a two trillion dollar tax cut for the wealthy?

    And now times are bad, and when we really wish we could have saved that money, NOW is the time to cut back. It's all so clear what Republicans are thinking, after all: who needs a good economy?

    March 28, 2009 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  14. virginia for obama

    I agree with Survivor, Our children is in trouble NOW! We have to

    STABLIZE the economy now or the Future will be here before you

    know it. So stop grandstanding for your party Gregg and start helping.

    March 28, 2009 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  15. Osama bin Laden & Lush Limprick share the same vision for America - Failure

    President Obama should be happy this "appointment" took the coward's way out, and instead of helping with the problem, now just lob insults from the sidelines.

    How very republican of Gregg.

    March 28, 2009 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  16. Mike k

    Gregg campaigned for the job, was nominated only to refuse. This has given him even more undeserved publicity. Maybe this was his plan all along, be nominated, refuse and he gets extra attention because he supposedly refused on principle. Those kinds of self promoting principles we do not need.

    March 28, 2009 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  17. Jean

    It's the past administration that put that tradition (of passing on a more prosperous and strong country) at risk.

    Besides, the free market acting on its own and in the best interests of stockholders, does not meet all the needs of a country and its citizens. Government is not "the problem." Poor government, or one with lack of accountability, can be a problem, but, you know, don't throw out the baby with the bath water.

    March 28, 2009 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  18. pancho villa

    He was over-qualified for the cabinet position. He pays his taxes.

    March 28, 2009 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  19. Mike Syracuse, NY

    For those criticizing him for not joining the cabinet, perhaps when he got a good look at the destructive policies he wanted no part in implementing this fraud on the US. Open challenge, name one era or country where a big government led to big prosperity. The ultimate of big government was the USSR. It's state owned and managed economy was such a basket case that the country collapsed. Once Chine moved from a state controlled economy to a free market economy, their economy boomed. The government, no matter how good it's intentions, will never be as efficient in resource allocation as the marketplace. Capitalism works. It built America. Government should only do what people, municipalities, and states can not; such as national defense. Think of your own home bedget. If you have huge personal debts, is going into deeper debt your answer? Sure Bush screwed up with the deficit, that doesn't mean Obama should do more of the same. How will the same action result in a different outcome?

    March 28, 2009 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  20. E.M.M

    I wonder where all the senators that are lecturing about fiscal responsability have been doing for the last 8 years? Were they under a rock when the former president drove the surpluss we had to a deficit??

    March 28, 2009 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  21. Beth

    Sorry, Libs, but Gregg is right. And to justify Obama's spending by saying stuff like "where was he the past 8 years" doesn't fly. Only fools don't learn from mistakes of the past.

    March 28, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  22. Chris

    where was the GOP (Got 0 Plans) slamming the budget the last 8 years?

    reality is this isn't a budget concern. this is power envy.

    March 28, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  23. democrat in az

    Who cares what this or any other lying worthless dog of a rethuglican has to say. who needs them anyways

    March 28, 2009 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  24. disgusted

    Well, we can always cut taxes on the wealthy back to what they were 80 years ago, right Senator? Good Republican budget containing the most important thing to them.

    March 28, 2009 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  25. John Z.

    Coming from Judd Gregg those comments are a complement. I always thought that it was a huge mistake of Obama to have wanted to appoint him as commerce secretary as he would have been a disaster. That should be a lesson to Obama not to go to the bottom of the barrel and pick a Republican in an effort to be bi-partisan and unite the country.

    March 28, 2009 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
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