February 2nd, 2009
12:33 PM ET
14 years ago

GOP governor: We need an economic stimulus now

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/02/02/art.getty.obama.jim.douglas.jpg caption="President Obama met with Gov. Douglas Monday to talk about the American recovery and reinvestment plan."](CNN) - President Barack Obama and a Republican governor pushed for stimulus legislation at the White House this morning, as the president continued his push to attract GOP support.

Vermont Gov. Jim Douglas, vice chairman of the National Governors Association, told reporters that governors are looking to the federal government for assistance to "stimulate the economy, create jobs, to help us balance our budgets and preserve essential programs for the American people - and avoid the need to raise taxes at the state level."

The nearly $900 billion dollar bill passed the House last week without a single Republican vote. It is now in the hands of the Senate, and has faced bipartisan criticism from fiscal conservatives who say there are too many spending programs and not enough tax cuts for small businesses.

"I know there are some differences on some of the elements, and if I were writing it, it might be a little different,” said Douglas Monday. “If you were writing it, it might be a little different. But the essence of a recovery package is essential to get our nation's economy moving."

Obama said governors, mayors and county officials — who have been more supportive of stimulus spending than federal lawmakers - “are seeing the devastating effects on the ground of this economy." Many states have been forced to borrow from the federal government as their unemployment insurance funds run dry.

"People are being laid off, and that means that governors like Jim are having to not only deal with declining revenue, but increased social services to provide support for people who are unemployed as they're seeking work," he said.

Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (129 Responses)
  1. hello

    we don't need their vote remember Bill Clinton signed the economy bill without single republican vote.
    let us do it again don't listen to their idea.
    enough of their 8 years of tax cut.

    February 2, 2009 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  2. dittohead with forty names

    I miss the great messiah,El Rushbo,he will save us from the evil liberals.He will put two Mercedes in every driveway,free cigars,call girls on islands ive never heard of,and oxys for all.

    February 2, 2009 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  3. Henry Miller, Cary, NC

    Scott the Independent:

    The problem isn't so much that "trickle down" doesn't work, it's that CEOs seem to be at least as crooked as politicians. The apparently inescapable conclusion is that someone is always going to steal whatever money is lying around, whether that's a pork-barreling politician or an insanely over-paid CEO.

    We the People of the United are at the bottom of the economic food chain–of course we get eaten alive.

    February 2, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  4. Streamwood Bill

    Maybe the Republican governor should talk to the Republican Members of Congress and Seantors.

    I am ashamed to say that THEY seem to be the ones holding things up while American jobs are being lost every day, every hour.

    In contrast to the Democrats and President Obama, I don't see any sense of urgency on the part of the GOP ... except for John Boehner's and Mitch McConnell's shrill, self-serving protestations that they aren't really holding anything up.

    The American people/voters aren't stupid and will remember this in 2010.

    February 2, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  5. Grog in Ohio

    Sounds like Republican governors need to have a long talk with their congressmen and senators... DUH.

    February 2, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  6. On the fence about Barack

    Every day as I read the decisions Barack is making and the followers not only on this blog but in Congress, I get more discouraged with the direction this country is going. To organize to destroy free speech because you do not agree with the speaker, to organize to destroy the opposition because you have the money and you disagree with their position, all too much reminds me of another once immensely popular politician who carried out the same tactics... Adolf Hitler.

    Not saying Barack is anything like Hitler, but once you start down the dark path and begin believing you are more than what you are, it may be too late. Let's hope Barack can change to someone who is out for more than himself. Then it will be change I can believe if.

    February 2, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  7. Stacy from Leesburg VA

    Dear Governor Douglas,

    I suggest you speak with your GOP comrades in the House and Senate. Perhaps a person who belongs to their ilk and is seeing the economy sinking like a lead balloon can perhaps talk some sense into them. I think there are good ideas on all sides, but neither side has sole claim to being right.

    February 2, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  8. kelly WI

    This spending bill is just a way for more gov. You will be paying big time for it for ever.
    Yep, millions for honey bee insurance is really a great stimulus. Ha.
    The dems just want us to be dependend on gov from cradle to grave.
    And that means slaves to the gov. tax tax tax.

    February 2, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  9. Kathy

    We do need some sort of stimulus, but the nuts we have in Washington are too busy trying to sneak in their "favors", as usual. This economy is in the tank because of them and their outrageous spending. They are killing this country, one favor at a time.

    February 2, 2009 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  10. Neiki

    Why is it soooooo difficult for "the powers that be" to comprehend that it would be Waaaaaaaaaaaay Better!!!!! to just give the American taxes back to those who paid taxes (like directly to the businesses who need to make payroll, to the homeowners who need their mortgage refinanced to lower the payments & interest fees) DUH!!!!!!!!!!! Giving our tax dollars to banks & lending institutions WHO ARE NOT LENDING THE MONEY TO THOSE TAX PAYERS WHO NEED IT is definately NOT stimulating our ecomony!

    February 2, 2009 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  11. Jim in SC

    We need fiscal responsibility now. Our money is turning into monopoly money, it'll be worth nothing by the end of the year!

    February 2, 2009 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  12. Rick in WA

    Scott the Independent – Tax reductions without a reduction in unnecessary federal spending does not solve the problem. You are correct on that point. The "crash course in Economics" for the GOP is a little disengenuous, however, because the democrat spending plans don't work either. We need jobs. We need to make it more attractive for businesses to operate in the U.S., not drive them elsewhere (both foreign and domestic businesses). On this we should all work together.

    February 2, 2009 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  13. Jim in SC

    "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money."
    -Alexis de Tocqueville

    February 2, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  14. proudliberal-independent

    republicans in congress are being the obstructionists. they don't want the country to succeed in pulling out of this mess they got us into. 2010 will be a great year to rid the congress of republicans completely.

    February 2, 2009 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  15. facts are facts

    If there is one proven theory it is tax breaks to the wealthy doesn't do anything for the country but bankrupt the economy. For once the news medias should do the country a favor and publicly state where America stands world wide on education.

    The Conservatives don't want Federal help for education but if something isn't done and done quickly in this area the U.S. will lose a generation of knowledgeable and capable people to perform jobs in the 21st Century.

    February 2, 2009 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  16. Maggie from Virginia


    This is not an Obama bill. The house democrats drafted this bill. Obama is trying to get all members of congress to work together. He wants a good bipartisan bill that will stimulate the economy. So far, only the democrats have come up with a drafted bill. Republicans are just now starting to give input and talk about drafting an alternative.

    February 2, 2009 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  17. S Callahan

    Voting in Democracts did not give consent to spend foolishly....at this point it doesn't matter which party repesents us...the people, the taxpayers, are demanding responsible spending and accountability.
    The longer the delay in decision making the harder it is becoming for working citizens, buisness owners, and family households to survive.
    Get off you touchee's and do something NOW!

    ps...From my persepective...unless this country, this world, turns their eyes back to God nothing , I mean nothing, will work and hold. A bandaid only convers the sore, it doesn't heal the injury.

    February 2, 2009 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  18. Ray Fisher

    Once the pork and sacred cows are removed the bill may be worth beans. Until then the agendas must be removed!!!

    February 2, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  19. Frank Sykes

    Allen slashing taxes hasn't worked for the last 8 years. More companies have sent jobs over seas, more companies have gone bankrupt due to their taxes getting cut. This hasn't stimulated the economy one bit. Unemployement is up. It is time for government to come in a spend some money rebuiling America, and the American brand.

    February 2, 2009 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  20. Putin still invading Alaskan airspace between Palin's ears

    Interesting how the Republican governors of the states including Palin are supporting the stimulus package. Hmmm ...

    February 2, 2009 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  21. Bill

    @Scott the Independent

    So, JFK was wrong when he said cutting marginal rates will stimulate the economy? Go back and check his State of the Union address in 1963. Why do tax cuts result in raising revenues to the treasury?

    The crash course that is need is that even though revenues go up to record levels, spending more than you take in ALWAYS leaves you broke.

    You can't have it both ways. I don't think the economy is what the condom provision of this bill is meant to stimulate.

    Get a grip and go read this lovely piece of "legislation" then get back to me and tell me if that's how you'd partition your persona; budget.

    February 2, 2009 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  22. Eyckie

    A GOPer that wants the stimulus now? That's a switch. At least some of these obstructionists have some brains. Mitch says they're not trying to hold the stimulus up and no one that he knows is doing that. Then why did they all vote NO. I think Obama should just go ahead and make it so because Republicans don't care if American's can't pay mortgages or heat their homes or even put food on the table. Since when did they ever care about ordinary Americans? They just want their buddies to get the big tax breaks so they are holding America hostage while the country burns.

    February 2, 2009 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  23. person



    February 2, 2009 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  24. person

    Can someone pls tell the GOPs that Tax cuts are useless if you dont have a job. Obama is pushin for blue collar jobs, green tech jobs, jobs in science & arts.

    February 2, 2009 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  25. stag

    Wow, another governor begging for money from the mesiah. This is not news.

    Douglas, go take care of your problems in Vermont and stop trying (although you will likely succed) to take money from the taxpayers.

    February 2, 2009 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
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