September 6th, 2010
12:07 PM ET
4 years ago

Wisconsin GOP chair jabs Obama ahead of visit

President Obama travels to Wisconsin on Monday.
President Obama travels to Wisconsin on Monday.

Washington (CNN) – On a day when President Obama is traveling to Wisconsin to call for $50 billion in public works spending to spur job creation, the chairman of the Wisconsin Republican party said the state should reject the money.

In a conference call with reporters organized Monday by the Republican National Committee, Wisconsin GOP chairman Reince Priebus claimed that the president's pitch will "fall on deaf ears" and said that the spending proposal is "going to make him more unpopular than he is."

"These guys couldn't find $50 billion in the trillions they have already spent?" he asked. "The whole thing is absurd. We are upside down in this country and this isn't going to do a thing to change that."

Priebus said Wisconsinites don't want the money, pointing to a proposed high-speed rail line between Milwaukee and Madison that would be funded by money from the original stimulus bill. The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reported in June that just 41 percent of Milwaukee area residents support the rail system.

He wants to spend a billion dollars on a train between Milwaukee and Madison that people don't want," Priebus said of the president (the train system would actually cost the government $810 million).

"Last I checked on the stimulus, the federal government proposed just short of $30 billion in roads and infrastructure in last stimulus plan. Certainly that didn't help much in the economy," he said.

CORRECTION: The original version of this story said that $47 million worth of stimulus funds would be used to pay for the rail line, when in fact the government granted the state $810 million to fund for the project.


Filed under: 2010 • President Obama • Wisconsin
soundoff (46 Responses)
  1. Midwest

    Typical response by Liberals spend spend spend just keep writing those checks

    Apparently your Father and my Father differed in their opinion of WORK Ethic and FISCAL Resposibility.

    ONLY because my Father taught me to be responsible and sacrifice are we able to live in a modest $135k house that we financed after saving and putting $16k on the down payment. NOT because I believed we should do it because everybody else is and NOT becuase some bank told me I could afford a $300k house with nothing down – THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN STUPID.

    Our son attends a private school not because I have a credit card but because we put off buying NEW CARS under the clunker program.....

    SACRIFICE and SPENDING are different principles

    Hell pay down some of the national debt with that $50M or pay for stupid f...ing CA to Vegas lite rail. Just keep all the useless stupid shit out of my state.

    September 6, 2010 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  2. JES

    The Washington Post babbled again today about
    Obama inheriting a huge deficit from Bush. Amazingly
    enough, a lot of people swallow this nonsense. So once
    more, a short civics lesson.
    Budgets do not come from the White House. They come
    from Congress, and the party that controlled Congress
    since January 2007 is the Democrat Party. They
    controlled the budget process for FY 2008 and FY 2009,
    as well as FY 2010 and FY 2011. In that first year, they
    had to contend with George Bush, which caused them to
    compromise on spending, when Bush somewhat
    belatedly got tough on spending increases.
    For FY 2009 though, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid
    bypassed George Bush entirely, passing continuing
    resolutions to keep government running. At that time, they passed a
    massive omnibus spending bill to complete the FY 2009
    budgets.
    And where was Barack Obama during this time? He
    was a member of that very Congress that passed all of
    these massive spending bills, and he signed the omnibus
    bill as President to complete FY 2009. Let's remember
    what the deficits looked like during that period.
    If the Democrats inherited any deficit, it was the FY
    2007 deficit, the last of the Republican budgets. That
    deficit was the lowest in five years, and the fourth
    straight decline in deficit spending. After that,
    Democrats in Congress took control of spending, and
    that includes Barack Obama, who voted for the
    budgets. If Obama inherited anything, he inherited
    it from himself.
    In a nutshell, what Obama is saying is I inherited a
    deficit that I voted for and then I voted to expand
    that deficit four-fold since January 20th.

    September 6, 2010 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  3. Donna from Colorado Springs

    Spoken like a true know-it-all Republican! I'm sure that he thinks he speaks for EVERYBODY IN WISCONSIN, but I know that turning down ANY MONEY THAT COULD HELP THEIR ECONOMY IS POLITICAL SUICIDE! I just can't wait to see what happens on November third if Republicans gain back any power. I'm sure that all of our problems will magically disappear because they're in charge! Things will get even worse....trust me!

    September 6, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  4. barry

    President Obama won't be happy until we fully follow the Greece model and our outcome is the same as theirs. It is sad a once strong nation is being brought down with the radical policies he wants. We need a change and try to reverse the damage done. I hope we can make the changes needed to make it possible for people to achieve the American dream. At this point it isn't looking good for the Home Team.

    September 6, 2010 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  5. SD

    What is amazing is how I can read a post about Southern States blindly voting Republican. It's because of decades of voting straight Democrat (Google "Solid South"), and realizing that Democrat policies bring you to ruin. Good example. Look at all the northern states that took up the Democrat banner. The more they've voted Democrat the worse it's gotten.

    The stance that shows me how weak minded Democrats are, would be when a Stimulus style measure is passed, a state that was against it takes money, and then you hear the Democrats crowing. Well, moron, of course their going to take the money when it's in part THEIR MONEY. Can I go empty your bank account and then offer you a small percent to feel better? It's the ultimate way for the Federal Government to have control. Make everyone need them.

    As for the Democrat model, it's a Ponzi scheme system. As long as you keep growing the bottom of the pyramid, it works. Example. Auto Unions. Retirments/Benefits are all predicated on growth of the business AFTER their contribution. But, the only way the business can grow is if population grows and they buy their product. What happens if a competitor comes into the equation, or population goes flat? That means the current and future workers are SCREWED. But, looking out for future generations has never been a concern for a Democrat. Democrats are the party of "ME, MY, and I". Listen to Obama for 30 minutes and you'll hear those words a lot. The and "redoubled". Nex year will he "reredouble"?

    September 6, 2010 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  6. amanda5

    did any news reporter ask questions?

    September 6, 2010 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  7. Livin the good life

    Hey, if they don't want the money, then DON'T turn around later and take it! That's what they do everywhere. Deny the money publically and then a few weeks later, when it is out of the news, take it...Beau Colby

    September 6, 2010 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  8. Coherent1

    Go ahead and trust private corporations to create jobs. Some have reported record profits but refuse to hire. It has nothing to do with Obamacare, and more to do with crybaby rich guys and the politicians that are bought by them. They're playing mercy with your livelihood to force you into putting back into place, the same corruption that got us here in the first place. Go ahead, have at it. :-|

    September 6, 2010 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  9. Time Grows Short

    There was money for roads, rails, and runways in the "stimulus" but if everyone recalls the Obama lesbian/feminist machine forced the Obamists to pull the money from these programs because males would benefit. Thats a fact that was NEVER reported by CNN.

    September 6, 2010 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  10. Sweetness

    The GOP is hoping and praying that the Economy gets worse....what an evil set of losers!!

    September 6, 2010 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  11. Don Wuerl

    At least there are a lot of people who have work thanks to those infastructure jobs! On the other hand, I still don't see why I94 needs to be expanded to four lanes north and south between Milwaukee and Illionis boarder. And many of the roads in Wisconsin that needed replacement are finally getting replaced; its about time that happenned, too.

    September 6, 2010 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  12. Donkey Party

    The GOP is worse than any terrorist organization, because they're already here trying to kill as many Americans as possible. The GOP and all their supporters should be executed for treason and crimes against the homeland. They are not Americans, they are not patriots, they are sub-human filth that fester like toxic cesspools. When will people wake up???

    September 6, 2010 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  13. Dt

    Gop keep talking about the jobs and spending. Obama spend money herd at home, bush spent money on wars. BTW werent we already in debt when obama took over? i am just asking. Let me get straight, gop/Tp don't want the gov't to spend money but do want the gov't to create jobs and extend tax cuts for the rich, lol. Really the gop just found something that struck a nerve with some people and they r going to ride it out until they in power and then what. Its sad they would rather have people suffer just to get power. heres an example for u neocons, the gop block unemployment extentions for people who need help, but are fighting like crazy to make tax cuts for the top 2%. seriously does that make any sense. Unemployment is what 350/wk a max.

    September 6, 2010 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  14. Bobby Ray

    Stupid liberals don't get it. Tax money is our money and our money belongs to the rich. We got ours, so suck it!

    September 6, 2010 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  15. Bessy

    Why don't the people in Wisconsin take a vote on whether they want the money or not ? They should insist on it ? March in the streets to get this vote if they have to. That is really the only way to shut these idiots up and then the rest of the country won't be making false statements on what people like Priebus have to say. They have to vote this idiot out of office. He is not serving them. He is serving the Republican Party.

    September 6, 2010 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  16. D. Gonzales

    I hope Congress says "No way". Imagine new roads, trains, and runways. How many illegal aliens will be employed? How many of these jobs will be for college graduates, after all President Obama is all about education. Is there a degree in pavement technology? The money will go to the contractors. The average American will still not be able to afford a new or used car and gas for a trip on the new highways. More trains could also damage the current struggling airlines, perhaps the intent is to have "TSA" move into the passenger train industry?
    The capital should clearly be in alternative energy sources like Obama preached during his election. Wind turbines, electrical cars, solar systems will bring in long term manufacturing jobs. Maybe if Americans were employed we could then utilize new highways, railroad systems and aircraft runways.

    September 6, 2010 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  17. BeverlyNC

    Republicans have been the Party of Hate, Fear and Lies ever since President Obama took office. They hate the fact we have an intellligent black President and have voted NO on every single piece of legislation regardless who it hurt just to try to make America fail and therefore bring down the black President they hate.

    President Obama has stood up for ALL Americans, passed ALL people-focused laws to re-regulate the banks, protect us from health insurance companies, from credit card companies, added more lower interest loans so kids can go to college, added more intense healthcare for our returning soldiers to address those with PTSD and for those who lost arms and legs. He raised the salaries of soldiers so their families could get off welfare. He passed a law so women would get equal pay as men for the same job. He gave tax cuts to the middle class. Job creation is going up every month. We are now out of Iraq and our Allies respect and trust us again. We are safer now than we ever were under Bush and Cheney who broke international laws with the Iraq War and with Torture.

    Democrats have stood up for YOU and done real work for YOU all year.They have delivered solutions that are working. Why would you want to end progress and let Republicans take us back to the Bush years?????

    Republicans have done NOTHING to deserve anyone's vote.

    September 6, 2010 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  18. larry

    it took 8 years for the republicans to trash the economy and people want Obama to fix it in 2 years....also the media including CNN are helping the republicans trash Obama

    September 6, 2010 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  19. Hammerer

    Where is the great Obamacare? Not a mention from the Dems, nor the media, about the bill that would save the world and end everyone's troubles.
    The promise was more jobs, savings, healthcare for everyone, lower taxes for all. Could that be the problem? Just Obama's version of HOPE & CHANGE.
    Are you sorry yet?

    September 6, 2010 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  20. Clwyd

    We know it will be on deaf ears unless you are a Big Oil, Big Business or Wall Street man or woman. The Repulsive Party on listens to money honey! That is why I left the party of NO! Do nothing, No common sense, nothing!

    September 6, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  21. Republicans gone wild!!

    I'M VOTING DEMOCRAT this fall. If you look at what's aT stake the Republican Tea Party is to risky. The Republicans candidates are untested, extreme and that is a dangerous mix in a tough economy. Play it safe and vote Democrats.

    September 6, 2010 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
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