2008 Presidential Candidate Barack Obama was reported to President Barack Obama’s ‘Attack Watch’ after it was revealed that Candidate Barack Obama made misleading statements on closing the detention facility known as Guantanamo Bay…
Newt Gingrich has formally jumped in as a candidate for President in 2012. But judging by the quote on the front of Newt.org, I’m not sure if he is running against Obama or against Joe Biden to serve as O’s veep:
Contrary to Robert Samuelson’s claim that TARP has been a success story, it has been anything but.
Writing in the Washington Post, Samuelson claims that “[w]hen the entire financial system succumbs to panic, only the government is powerful enough to prevent a complete collapse.” Clearly, Samuelson has never taken an economics course.
First, when the financial markets tumbled in 2008, the correct reaction would have been to allow the financial system to naturally collapse and allow it to rebuild itself by reallocating resources to those entities that were best suited to do that. Instead, the government stepped in and provided the TARP fund, which propped up zombie corporations and companies that had mismanaged resources. Such activity allowed bad business practices to continue.
The left-wing polling firm PPP released a poll today highlighting possible U.S. Senate match-ups for Virginia in 2012. PPP reports that Republican turned Democrat, Jim Webb, leads George Allen by 49-45. The 4 point deficit that Allen faces is very easy to overcome–and Jim Webb knows that.
Allen would have a further boost if Obama is on the ballot in 2012. Webb will have to distance himself from his support of ObamaCare, Stimulus, Bailouts, etc.. Allen has a very easy advantage when it comes to this.
And even better news for Allen is that PPP always favors Dems in their polls. So Allen being behind by only 4 points is probably off, meaning that Allen is tied or ahead. And the margin of error on the poll was 4%, which is another advantage for Allen.
With Webb below 50% of support 2 years out, he must be on the phone with the White House seeing what type of jobs are open in the Obama administration.
Which leads to another interesting tidbit on the poll. They tested Tim Kaine’s name as well.
According to HamptonRoads.com:
The poll also asked voters about a possible matchup between former Gov. Timothy M. Kaine and the Republicans. Kaine scored a 50-44 lead over Allen, 50-39 over Cuccinelli and 48-41 over Bolling.
Kaine is a long-shot candidate in 2012 and would have a lot of the same negatives on the campaign trail that Webb has–if not more.
At this point, it looks like Allen could cruise back to the Senate.
While champagne corks are flying and toasts of success are being made, it is not yet time to celebrate a supposed surplus of revenue in Virginia. According to Governor Bob McDonnell, the state has a surplus of at least $220 million. But does Virginia really have a surplus?
After the past General Assembly session, many budgetary gimmicks have come to light. One such item of budgetary voodoo was a postponement of funding the VRS by $620 million. This payment, as the General Assembly and Governor McDonnell promised, would be made at a later date. Currently, the VRS has $53 billion in unfunded liabilities, according to a study of state pension plans from the American Enterprise Institute. Not only was the Governor’s decision to not return funding to this boondoggle a sleight of hand, the state is still on the hook to refund the VRS in the coming years.
Further troubling is McDonnell’s claims that he has balanced the budget, and created a surplus, without raising taxes. The budget that McDonnell signed included more than $95 million in new fees alone! Aside from the fee increases, McDonnell’s signature on that budget also revived one of the most reviled budgetary gimmicks seen yet—a requirement for retailers to pre-pay a month’s sales taxes to the state through 2013.
Today is the Veto Session in the Virginia General Assembly. This is a one-day meeting of both chambers in Virginia’s capitol, to approve or deny changes to bills that passed in the previous session made by Bob McDonnell, the bogged down Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia.
One thing is for sure when the General Assembly meets today—if you bash McDonnell on a policy you disagree with him on, you will probably be able to get him to agree with you in the end.
Consider that in the nearly first 100 days of the McDonnell administration, he has achieved to receive more national press than any other governor during the same period. The press he received, however, was negative and highly critical of the self proclaimed “Jobs Governor” (there exists no evidence to support that he has created any yet).
McDonnell has become a punch line joke on late night television over his Confederate history month proclamation to muzzling his Cabinet Secretaries from the press—McDonnell has provided such amateur leadership that he is striving to appease whoever criticizes him in efforts to gain their support.
The other day I wrote that Republicans faced a choice in Virginia. This was in reference to newly elected Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell proposing policies that seemed to be the opposite of what candidate McDonnell supported while claiming to be a “fiscal conservative” and “anti-stimulus” Republican.
Voters sent a strong message in November when they elected McDonnell by a landslide margin. However, they did not elect him to go knocking on Obama’s door for stimulus cash on behalf of Virginia. Yesterday, Anita Kumar with the Washington Post covered McDonnell’s latest “stimulus” scheme. McDonnell, along with former Virginia Governor and DNC Chairman Tim Kaine, have gone hat in hand to Obama to request $350 million for educational purposes in Virginia. The Federal money would come from the Race to the Top Program.
According to Anita Kumar:
“The $350 million requested by Virginia would be split between the state and the 117 local education agencies that have asked for funding. Money would be spent on charter schools and low-performing schools, finding and retaining teachers, and improving student assessment, among other purposes. All of Northern Virginia’s school systems signed on.”
How does Mr. McDonnell expect to pay for these programs once the “stimulus” cash runs out? And, what happened to the “fiscal conservatism” that Mr. McDonnell sold over the course of his campaign? Activists are paying attention and will hold Mr. McDonnell accountable for his increased spending propositions.
The Typical GOP Rears Its Ugly Head
It looks like Mr. McDonnell is doing the usual GOP two-step routine when it comes to his position on the stimulus. McDonnell has publicly stated that he believes that as long as stimulus money is there, Virginia should have it’s share but states that he is against a stimulus bill in the first place. But does Mr. McDonnell even know what Virginia’s share of that money really is? Doubtful.