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. smith

    Don't get confused fellow citizens. Arnold is simply double talking. He knows his party is UNPOPULAR and in SERIOUS trouble. He is now talking like a Democrat in an attempt to get California votes and to get re-elected. Arnold hasn't changed a bit. Do not trust him.

    February 22, 2009 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  2. BrideR

    Really Arnold...You should reexamine your loyalties and get in line with GOP majority.

    Obviously the obstructionist would like to see Obama’s polices fail...Then we can go back to the enormously successful polices that created this crisis.

    February 22, 2009 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  3. Vegas09

    Some people in here must not realize that California has a larger population than the entire country of Canada which probably has something to do with the amount of bailout money they are scheduled to receive. These same ignorant people that continue to bash Pres. Obama are the same people that supported Pres. Bush for 8 years even though he has been considered one of the worst Pres. ever (or at least bottom 25%). Maybe those Obama haters would like to bring back Bush for a 3rd term to make things better. And with "better" I do mean "worse".

    February 22, 2009 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  4. J. Mac

    I am glad at least one person is speaking up in support of the stimulus package. It seems that all parties agree that a stimulus was needed, but the only articles that are available are those criticizing the stimulus agreement. It would be impossible to please everyone, but something had to be done quickly. The president did exactly what he needed to do under the circumstances. Now we wait and see what happens. One thing I do know, is that people (especially our nation's leaders) have to be a little more positive about the situation. Our nation is not confident in the economy and the media is definately not helping.

    February 22, 2009 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  5. independent

    I feel like so many Americans out there speak so nagative of anything and everything the Presidents does. Yet when Bush was diging us into a big hole very few objected to his ways. How about we give it time and then we can start naging.

    February 22, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  6. Dee Dee Lynn

    Hey "Other People's" which economists are you listening to? Please name names. Did Rush Limbaugh suddenly declare himself an economist? All of the economists I have heard on the left and right say that only massive spending by the government will get us out of this.

    What you and Limbaugh don't seem to understand is that is also what got us out of the Great Depression. The lunatic fringe that got us into this mess likes to say that the war got us out of the depression, but really what was the war but a massive government spending program? The government spent the country into full employment and it ran all the factories at full capacity, and that got us out the hole.

    Of course, the Republican way of having a war is that you run up huge deficits outsourcing everything to your friends and pouring money into a foreign country where it disappears, and at the end, your country is in massive debt with nothing to show for it. I guess that's the alternative your "economists" want to offer us.

    February 22, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  7. JSU-TIGER99

    Well I am glad my governor of CALI is taking the money because I want my state taxes that I have paid forget all of this BULL- $#!% these other governors are talking about, When they run out of money they are going to run to Washington DC asking for money and I will turn them down. I feel they dont want to take the money because the President is BLACK not because he is a DEM, It is time that we all work together and stop saying that it is not going to work no one said it was not going to work when BUSH ask for $700 BILLION DOLLARS and no one said anything about it is not going to work. Once ange the color of your skin still matter in USA no matter what anyone say it matter, If McCain was in office all the GOP governors would be taking the money like it was PANCAKES. Why cant you take it now and help your state is the pride that you have more thant the people in your state needs. What a &$^## UP WORLD.

    February 22, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  8. Mikes a Loser

    Get over Mike. You make no sense. Go find your bottle.

    February 22, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  9. Susan from Scotts Valley, CA

    Thanks Gov! I'm behind you all the way on this one. The thing about these other governors as they can take this public stand that they turned it down and were good Conservatives because they know their state legislators are going to overrule them and they will still get the money for their states. Way to play politics.

    February 22, 2009 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  10. change in America

    I wish someone tell Georgia Governor it terrific I cant wait until 2010 so I can vote for oxendine for the demoncrate governor of Georgia I am going to tell everybody in Georgia to vote republicans out the office....Georgia need help and the republicans in Georgia does not care about the poor or middle class

    Vote 2010 for Demoncrate

    February 22, 2009 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  11. sandy

    Good for Arnold. At least he has the courage to stand up and say what he believes, even if it differs from his party line. I just hope the people of this country will rally behind OUR PRESIDENT and give him support on his endeavors. He is really trying to help us all, regardless of what the Republicans say. He needs everyone now.

    February 22, 2009 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  12. D

    Matt in MN, your stating the obvious. California has the biggest economy in the US. Thats why they need the most money, its not a bad thing its a fact. Sorry MN is a weak state with no economy, maybe you should do something about it.

    February 22, 2009 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  13. John W

    California has a population of around 37 million, Mississippi has 3 million. For every dollar in federal taxes California workers pay, they get $0.78 back in spending. For every $1.00 that Mississippi workers pay in fed taxes, they see $2.02 in return spending. It's obvious that California should get the most help, we have the highest population and one of lowest costs to federal tax spending. I can understand why the Mississippi governor doesn't want any more money, they are currently #2 in fed tax dollars spent per capita, they could easily be an unwelcome #1.

    February 22, 2009 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  14. jmc

    at least one republican governor has common sense. arnold take the money from the five governors that's against the bill. it obvious the demos are looking at the country first.

    February 22, 2009 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  15. Gary

    Hey Terminator, you do not know anything. You are an actor basically. Barack himself has no experience in governance. He has to take expert advise from these Republican governors who are trying to save our country from financial disasters. Do you understand? Is Barack listening? He should learn because he has no executive experience.

    February 22, 2009 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  16. Rama

    The way the republicans are acting, I am going to vote for obama even if he does not solve the problems in this first term.

    February 22, 2009 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  17. Timus

    Tell them Governator!!! The Miss governor is playing politics. It's HIS discretion if he wants to keep the unemployment benefits extended two years from now. DUH!!! I know the education in Miss is a little behind but come on!! With or without the stimulus it will be up to him!!

    February 22, 2009 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  18. Barbara

    @Matt: That is where you are wrong...Obama can get us further in the hole than Bush did. In fact, he just did...one trillion dollars worth...where do you live? under a rock?

    February 22, 2009 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  19. Texan

    he is right for california for such

    February 22, 2009 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  20. Cathy, LA

    Barbour and Jindal, unfortunately, are more focused on the 2012 elections than the impact of turning down the unemployment benefits for ordinary Americans in their states. These benefits would not impact future state funds unless the states make them permanent. I can think of plenty of other states who would be willing to take the stimulus funds turned down by these shortsighted governors.

    February 22, 2009 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  21. Theory

    Way to go Arnold ! you just proved you can think for self and not be a Limbite ! as in biting off of Limbaugh's rhetoric .

    February 22, 2009 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  22. Kyle

    Considering that California accounts for over 13% of the nation's gross domestic product and over 12% of its population, maybe that state should get the largest portion of the stimulus?

    February 22, 2009 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  23. 波風- Penny

    Arnold is handcuffed by term limits. He has nothing to lose by "bucking" his party. However, he was never a poster child Republican. He went his own way based on his personal beliefs, whether or not any of us agreed to them. I just wish he could browbeat the other Republicans into line. This isn't the time to go partisan – people (like me, who is unemployed) are suffering.

    My concern is if the portion of the stimulus in CA really will create jobs or plug a whole in their massive deficit...

    February 22, 2009 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  24. The recovery...

    The stimulus bill now signed into law has two mail flaws:
    a) Pres Obama and his team should have written the stimulus
    bill in the first place and presented it to Conpress for a BIPARTISAN
    debate and approval.
    b) The USA being a trillion dollars economy and now in danger of
    collapse must be answered with the injection of smart spending,
    collective and inclusive but it looks for sure very selective.
    c) As nothing in the above meets the essential points for success the
    stimulus is on the way to failure


    February 22, 2009 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  25. kathleen

    I wish someone could produce real numbers on the stimulus. One post here says "california gets more money by far". California is more populous than other states. Let's be rational and use numbers. Statistically Californians get a low return on federal taxes compared to most states. The prosperity of Californians and some other states like Connecticut, New Jersey, and Illinois help other states. it's odd then that when California is facing tough times as are other states some don't want to help out – but were more than happy to take the wealth generated in good times.

    It would be better if these posts used facts as opposed to politics. What got us into this mess is more focus on politics and less on economics and sound business principles.

    I would love to see a ranking of stimulus package per capita of each state. That seems rationale as opposed to saying one state got more than another particularly given the wide differnences in population.

    February 22, 2009 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
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