March 28th, 2009
12:34 PM ET
6 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. Hannah Stevens

    Where was he when bush was sending billions to Iraq, money that was wasted and carried off by the bushel. Government grew more than 12% under the bush cheney regime and all we have to show for it is a broken economy, real estate, New Orleans. Every government agency was gutted and was left worthless, FDA, SEC, FEMA, FBI. Now Obama is cleaning up the mess bush and his buddies left behind. And It will take some money. Go Obama! I am behind you 100%.

    March 28, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  2. willowood

    If Gregg was so certain of failure and darkness looming so close, why now, why not when Bush was sending us down the financial, moral and litigious primrose path. His words speak volumes of his 'henny penny' mentality. At some point it all comes true. If the Republicans would work with this President, vent their feelings to him and his staff, maybe we would have a real government. Right now we have solo players with just one orchestra member looking for help and direction.
    This is Gregg secong go round with the press...soon I hope you will stop echoing his message.

    March 28, 2009 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  3. JM

    Add his seat to the Dem category in 2010.

    March 28, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  4. George

    Gregg has a short memory does he not remember Bill Clinton's legacy which George Bush frittered away !

    March 28, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  5. Had It

    Just more Limbaugh/Rove daily or weekly talking points from the mouths of republicans.

    Hog Wash.

    March 28, 2009 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  6. clysly

    its easier to criticize a young president with complaints but no concrete solutions. how different is the spending from george w. at least obama's is spent in America and not Iraq.

    March 28, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  7. Mike in Seattle

    Socialism is an expensive sport. Entitlements cost a lot of money. If we want to sustain the Democratic control of government for generations to come we need to build the dependence upon the government so we have more people locked into the Democratic Party. It is a pretty simple formula.

    March 28, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  8. Al

    I like Judd Gregg more and more each day

    March 28, 2009 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  9. Harriet

    The U.S. government NEEDS an extraordinary move to the left. So far Obama hasn't moved further left than he promised to.

    March 28, 2009 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  10. Mitchell from MS

    The fact is parties the dems and the GOP have sold out the American people!

    Lets get back to common sense, and start governing by the US Constitution again!

    March 28, 2009 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  11. ED FROM WISCONSIN

    I'm going to keep this short and sweet. GOP policies are the reason why the economy is in such a bad shape. What the Republicans did to our economy while Bush was in office was irresponsible, and centered around 8 years of wasteful spending at the hands of incompetent GOP members. If the Re-thug-blicans had their way, we’d go back to living in the Dark Ages.

    March 28, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  12. R Wolf

    I'm happy to move the government to the Left. I am so sick of the Right trying to tell everyone how to live, what their morals should be, and not caring if the poor go hungry or homeless, while they show no morals or ethics, they live however they want, and they put greed onto a whole new level. I am proud to be a liberal, I am proud of caring for my fellow man, and I am so glad to have President Obama and Vice President Biden running this Country.

    March 28, 2009 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  13. Smart

    Interesting. Not a single comment actually addressing the content of the speech, just attacking the person. Do you people believe that Bush ruined the country by creating deficits or not? If so, then how do you justify as a solution an even larger deficit???

    March 28, 2009 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  14. Dan VA

    You socialist libs can keep up your boring never ending reference to "the past 8 years", but we are not going to let you drive us into unlimited government control. No way, no how.

    March 28, 2009 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  15. the Film Professor

    Like Paul Begala said the other day, this is like the arsonists complaining that the fire department is using too much water.

    The GOP burned our national house down in the past 8 years. So shut up already, and give Obama a chance to fix this mess, particularly when the GOP has no constructive suggestions to offer.

    March 28, 2009 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  16. Indiana Mike

    Reducing the amount of goverment, as Sen. Gregg suggests, is like pulling the Ref's out of a game because they caught someone cheating. The President, as he should be called, is trying to clean up a mess that was created by "Free Market gone wild". He is not trying to create a socialist state, or "Keynesian economists" as Joan called it; The President is trying to put regulations in place so everyone has the same rules to play under.
    Give the President a chance, he didn't create the mess, he's just here to clean it up.

    March 28, 2009 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  17. Peter E

    He also forgot to mention how our country also has a history of passing a larger and larger debt onto the next generation. All that 'prosperity' is borrowed. Reagan single-handedly trippled the national debt. Bush Jr. doubled it.
    Soyy, but one of the generations will have to be taxed to pay down that borrowed prosperity. We owe it. All that prosperity and American dream we think we are entitled to are borrowed.
    Or, we can just pass that debt further down the line, because apparently it's now an American right not to be taxed, and not to pay down the debt we owe.

    March 28, 2009 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  18. Charlie

    This is just another thought for Senator Gregg to ponder vis-a-vis the moving our country to the extraordinary left, when you drive your car into the ditch on the right side of the road, you must go left to get back to the center! Left is not always bad, especially when we have been brought to the extreme right. Remember, "Right" does not equal "correct"!

    March 28, 2009 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  19. bernie from Maryland

    One thing that Senator Gregg seems to understand that both President Bush and President Obama do not is that there have to be limits on spending when the country does not have the money.

    Waht is so hard to understand about that. We do not have the money!!

    It is true that Bush supporters and partisian Republicans now are a lot more cocerned about deficeits than they were when we were spending so much money that we did not have on two wars and tax cuts.
    However that should not be a legitimate excuse for President Obama and partisian democrats to do the same darn thing.

    By the same logic a guy who just held up a liquior store can point to someone else holding up a bank and say "at least I didnt do that!!"

    If we dont ahve the money we will have to do without.. It may lead to a reduced lifestyle but so be it.

    March 28, 2009 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  20. Bill Lewis

    Let's see, the government grew more under President Bush than any other President. The national debt was tripled under his stewardship and they converted a budget surplus into a trillion dollar debt. Where was Senator Gregg during this? Just nodding his head and going along with the flow. So, why should the Obama administration take any economic advice from this guy or any other Republican who went along Bush policies? It's also amazing how they have such short memories.

    March 28, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  21. Truth Hurts

    EVERYBODY seems to be VERY outspoken now that Bush of 8 years is gone!!!

    March 28, 2009 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  22. NYC gal

    If he knows so much, then why did he not speak out against Bush when he was ruining the country?

    March 28, 2009 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  23. David

    It seems the Repulican's are just Chariot that only repeat thesame word.
    Maybe they have to check up there dictionary..

    March 28, 2009 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  24. Rick CT

    In the past 6 years, the Dems controlled the Senate. In the past 2 years, they controlled all of Congress. No, it was the Reps by themselves. If I spent $2 for every $1 I earned, that would be irresponsible. Same holds for the government.

    March 28, 2009 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  25. tyree

    Senator Gregg is a joke. I'm glad people are waking up and actually taking these clowns at their word. This guy was for President Bush's tax cuts in 01' and in 03'. Who goes to war and cuts taxes at the same time? Where was Senator Gregg's fiscal conservatism then? Now, that President Obama is in office this guy is on the case. That's ridiculous. The only people in the Senate I respect from a financial standpoint are the conservative democrats like Evan Byah and Kent Conrad. At least they're criticism is consistent, regardless of what party is in power. That's how politics should work.

    March 28, 2009 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
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