February 22nd, 2009
12:59 PM ET
10 years ago

Schwarzenegger calls stimulus plan 'terrific'


Gov. Schwarzenegger is a fan of the stimulus measure.

(CNN) - California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Sunday declared President Obama's stimulus plan is "terrific," an assessment that sharply differs from many of his Republican colleagues.

In an appearance on CNN's State of the Union, Schwarzenegger said he welcomes his state's share of the massive $787 billion package, believing it could create as many as 400,000 new jobs.

"We welcome this economic stimulus package. I think it's terrific and will help us," the California governor said. "We were happy even though there's…people complaining. It's not what they envisioned, but what is? The people will give you 1,000 different answers.

"It was Obama that got elected. He put the package together, so let's support it," he also said.

Schwarzenegger's comments differ sharply from those of Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, who earlier on State of the Union said he would turn down some of the stimulus money because it could lead to future spending requirements from his state.

Specifically Barbour took issue with extensions to unemployment benefits called for in the package, which he believes the state will have to finance after the federal funds run out.

But Schwarzenegger disagreed, suggesting the added unemployment benefits can be cut off once the economy rebounds.

"If you promise people this money will come next year and the year after that, you'll have a major problem," he said. "But if you use the money for one-time spending…it cannot hurt."

soundoff (412 Responses)
  1. Roberta

    It appears to me that Governor Schwarzenegger actually thought about what the stimulus package could do and, unlike so many others, is grateful for any help even if it's not going to cure all his woes at one time. Good for him. And good for him for standing up for our President.

    February 22, 2009 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  2. Finetbeau

    To all those opposed to the stimulus package: Please publish a better one so that we can all agree with you geniuses, regardless of party allegiance!

    February 22, 2009 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  3. steve

    This money is going to keep state employees working for another few years, while they wait for common people like me to come up with new ideas and improve the economy. It will not help it will just keep the broken system up and running that much longer while they tax you and me and wait for us to fix this mess so they can stay in charge and keep on going like nothing is happening.

    February 22, 2009 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  4. keeth in california

    Arnold is happy to take money from Washington because he's a failure here at home. Recall.

    February 22, 2009 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  5. James

    "I really don't understand how getting into more debt is going to solve the problems that debt got us into in the first place. Any economist worth listening to is saying these "bailouts" are a mistake."

    Well... if you talk to 'any economist worth listening to' they would tell you that this isn't the first time there have been 'bailouts' of failing businesses in this country...remember the 15 billion dollar bailout of the airline industry?

    These bailouts may not be great in the long run, but really...is it hurting you now? no....is it making your situation at least a little better? probably.

    February 22, 2009 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  6. m. fox

    don't agree with everything arnold says or does, but he is one of the few republicans that i believe. he's what john mccain used to be, a rare honest republican.

    February 22, 2009 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  7. Sam


    Why don't you explain to me this "performance" you're talking about. Quit putting Obama on a pedestal until some "performance" can be gauged.

    February 22, 2009 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  8. Ron

    Arnold is awesome...maybe he can take over as illinois governor in a few years... or better yet, fill that junior senate seat!

    February 22, 2009 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  9. jason, tx

    A republican that think for himself! GOD FORBID!

    February 22, 2009 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  10. JC California

    Obama need to find a way to have the money flow back into US instead of flowing out of the country.

    Raising tax or use the borrowed money from selling US treasury bond to fund the stimulus package is not the solution to the US economy.

    Having the chinese to use their huge US currency reserve to buy US products will have to money flow back in US and create jobs in US. People have jobs will buy made in China product from Walmart and it will help the chinese workers to keep their jobs too. The trade deficit between US and China will also decrease. This is a win-win solution for both China and US.

    The peace between US and China will enhance because the ecomony of both countries are heavily depended on each other.

    Let's see if Hillary could strike a deal with China and have a chinese shopping team come to US soon. Boeing should sell more 747 and 787 before the order go to AirBus of France.

    February 22, 2009 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  11. David

    California has an enormous economy on its own, it's no surprise that it is getting the most with the troubles it is having.

    February 22, 2009 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  12. greg greenman

    I am so sick of the blame game. The Dems messed this up, the repubs messed this up. Shut up!!!!! Work together to fix it. Geez. I can't believe the cry baby mentality on both sides. It's quite hypocritical that the same people who don't want to help people in need keep their houses were so willing to pump billions into Iraq to rebuild it. I don' t mind people disagreeing with the stimulus just don't be a freaking hypocrite. These are American people we are talking about. We can help Iraqi's but not Americans? Amazing.

    February 22, 2009 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  13. had enough

    doesn't matter what Obama does the REP....are going to hate it
    these are the same REPs that told us to give "W" a chance in 2000
    and not play politics,,not sure if this program will work but something had to be done....and of course the REPs..had 8 years to earn my respect
    and failed ..so I will take one for the team at least for now...

    February 22, 2009 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  14. John from California

    Well done Governor Schwarzenegger, let's join forces with the Democrats to switch funds from those republican states to make California the world leader again.

    I think it's also time that our good Governor from California switched parties and became a card holding Democrat.

    February 22, 2009 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  15. Hallwayy

    Arnold has gotten a taste of his own party's "stubborness" when he couldn't get his own budget to pass because of three republican's who were holding out. At this point, he probably empathizes with Obama. That;s why he's like"hell yeah, bring on the money."

    February 22, 2009 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  16. Mari

    IT IS TERRIFIC! The hater-complainers-critics-on-the-far-right will ALWAYS spew their hate, they do not have SOLUTIONS OR IDEAS OF THEIR OWN!

    What really upsets me is that in a year or so, when our Nation is returning to PROSPERITY.......... WILL THE FAR-RIGHT GIVE CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE???????? NOPE.

    February 22, 2009 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  17. Ron

    You know what's irritating? People who pick up on comments and phrases used during and post election that are running rampant in the media...

    For instance:

    kool aid - i mean really....we have all drank the 'kool aid' for the past what.... 400+ years now? We're all in this together, get a grip.

    Nobama - the person who came up with this stuipid play on a name should feel proud of themselves for coming up with the most uncreative use of a name.

    Hussein - Why must people call him hussein? He is not Saddam Hussein...nor will he ever be... So...what is the use in pointing out his middle name? If you go by that logic, anyone with the middle name of manson would be considered to be a serial killer...or maybe someone with the name David...they could be the same as David Koresh right?

    You people make me sick.

    February 22, 2009 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  18. Brent

    The comments about California getting the most stimulous money shows a lack of understanding of where tax money come from. California gets less that 100% of its taxes returned to the state whereas many other states get much more than 100%. Dollar wise, California gets the most because it has the largest population and pays the most in taxes.

    The primary people against the stimulous, which is intended to mitigate the impact of the economic downturn, are the very rich and the very ignorant. The rich don't want it because the downturn is not hurting them and the ignorant can't understand how serious it will get if nothing is done.

    February 22, 2009 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  19. jon

    What do expect him to say? His state runs a $40bil budget deficit. He has no choice but to gladly accept the money the "stimulus" is going to give him. However, the stimulus is not going to work. All these states are going to have the same problems in a year. This doesn't fix anything. It perpetuates the reckless spending by the government.

    February 22, 2009 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  20. Ray Fisher

    Apparently, Arnie is shunning the GOP as they do him simply because he's married to a Kennedy!!! How childish can those Republican'ts get??? For once I'd like to see a Republican do something FOR America rather than TO America. They should simply switch names to the Take The Money And Run party!!!!

    February 22, 2009 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  21. Yo

    "more kool aid please "

    Just wanted to point out how retarded people sound saying this.

    February 22, 2009 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  22. Mike Green

    Its clear why arnold loves this bill. His state is getting most of the money. Also in the package a high speed train from L.A. to Las Vegas. Not sure how that is gonna help out the economy with all the people who ride trains in America. Funny Nevada happends to the be a Democratic state and u can guarantee there was some pull for this. And all you democrats out there who want tax increases for the weathly and Corporations ask yourself this, Who really pays the corporate tax? Corporations or the People. If you knew anything about business you would know that tax cost gets put into the price of the good. So even though Democrats say they are for the people, and the middle class well its all a smoke screen because the very people they are "helping" is actually costing them more money

    February 22, 2009 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  23. Rick Beagle

    I see a ton of people responding negatively to Gov. Swarzenegger's comments, and spouting the usual nonsensical rhetoric. California was not destroyed by Democrats... nope it was destroyed by deregulation of their energy grid imho. The seventh largest economy in the world has rolling blackouts still. And guess which party thought that was a good idea?

    Nevertheless Gov. Swarzenegger, who came into office as a deeply committed Republican, quickly found that absolutely nothing would get done if he stayed far to the right. He rethought his approach and by and large has done a terrific job. I am sure there are those that disagree, but California isn't opposed to another Republican governor – and that my friends is what they call "proof in the pudding". Considering how many states are going Blue these days, California (deep deep blue) is okay with a Republican governor.

    So, Repubs, this man has done what many in this country didn't this was possible, and painted your party as viable even in the bluest of states. Maybe you should put down your megaphones and listen to the man.

    Rick Beagle

    February 22, 2009 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  24. Joseph

    Bailey? Are you stupid? Seriously. I dont know how I feel about the stimulus. But I know how I feel about stupid people like you. What defines an "American"? I know my family has lived here for 20 years, we're hispanic, we work hard at what we do. And I'll tell you this much. Any white woman with as much as a speck of dirt on her arm will shout to the world that she's going through hardship. You know what? Time to start understanding. We're not taking your jobs. We're doing the worst jobs, the ones you don't want. All the big wig jobs are pretty much taken by "True Americans" Aka, white folk, as you're stupid post is assuming. Haha. Think about things. Stupid.

    February 22, 2009 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  25. andy

    it is funny how some governors do not support the stimulus plan. I understand that if someone makes $200.000 a year or more of course u dont need no help from the government but stop being selfish and think about the ppl who lost their jobs have a family to support and can t find another job because the economy sucks, After all the governors were voed by the pp to work for the ppl. I suggest these governors should not be re-elected next time around.

    February 22, 2009 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
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