Thursday, March 19, 2009


Bulletin: Palin tells Obama what he can do with his Simulus Money. First shot across the blow in emerging battle for presidency.

Breaking story from Anchorage Daily News: Palin rejects 45% of stimulus money

Gov. Palin said today she'll accept only 55 percent of the federal economic stimulus money being offered to Alaska. She said she will accept only about $514 million of the $930 million headed to the state.

[Note: Prior to Obama's signing of the Stimulus legislation, Sarah Palin urged him to veto it. Below (in italics) is the full story from the Anchorage Daily News, a newspaper that's long been hsotile to Palin -- apparently because of her commitment to traditional American values. She rejects the money for "education" on the grounds that paying for it is a state and local responsibility. Also, it makes little sense to spend more on education when the children are going to end up paying it in much higher taxes on their income.]
Gov. Sarah Palin just told reporters that she’s accepting only 55 percent of the federal economic stimulus money being offered to Alaska. The governor said that she will accept only about $514 million of the $930 million headed to the state.

“We are not requesting funds intended to just grow government. We are not requesting more money for normal day-to-day operations of government as part of this economic stimulus package. In essence we say no to operating funds for more positions in government,” Palin said.
The biggest single chunk of stimulus money that Palin is turning down is $160 million for education. There’s also $17 million in Department of Labor funds (vocational rehabilitation services, unemployment services, etc.), about $9 million for Health and Social Services and about $7 million for Public Safety. The full list and the specifics aren’t available from the governor’s budget department yet.

Palin said she’ll work with the Legislature if it decides that it wants to go ahead and accept the money (although she didn’t rule out vetoes). But the deadline for the Legislature to decide could be April 3. Legislators from both parties said, if that is the deadline, it doesn’t leave them much time to sort through it all.

Reaction among lawmakers was mixed. Members of the all-Republican state Senate minority said Palin is taking a wise course and it’s important not to accept federal money that could end up costing the state in the long run.

Anchorage Democratic Rep. Les Gara suggested Palin could be pandering to voters outside Alaska and said it’s hurting the state's education, public safety and quality of life.
“I’m worried the governor is taking this sort of national political stance which is that she’s going to be the opposite of Barack Obama on everything,” he said.

U.S. Sen. Mark Begich quickly issued a written statement today calling for lawmakers to accept the remainder of the stimulus money.

“I trust the legislature will do the right thing and take Alaska’s share of the money for education in the economic recovery package,” the statement quotes Begich as saying. “We owe it to our children to give them the most opportunities possible, and this is money fairly allocated to Alaska in this stimulus package.”


Greg said...

Last I heard, Jindal rejected just $98 million, Sanford, Perry and Barbour have rejected some as well, but Gov. Palin was the first to speak out against the so-called stimulus, and state her intention of rejecting some of it. Unfortunately, most governors are all too eager to line up at the trough.

Jim Fryar said...

Mark Samford appears to be putting up some resistance according to an "Opinionator" article in NYT, "Mark Sanford: The G.O.P.’s Goldwater Solution?" that is quite interesting.

He’s already being hailed as a “folk hero to conservatives” for his early opposition to President Obama’s stimulus plan, a fight that continues as the governor now maneuvers to use his share of the stimulus cash to pay down debt instead. On Tuesday, the White House rejected his initial request, and yesterday, Stanford wrote back, reiterating his arguments and refocusing his proposal — for example, to use education stimulus funds to pay down education debts. (Veronique de Rugy at the Corner has a copy of Sanford’s letter to the White House.)

Rickvid in Seattle said...

"Members of the all-Republican state Senate minority..." What an odd turn of phrase. It would scan as the Seante is all Republican. The better way is "...the Republican SEnate minority..." or "...the Senate minority Republicans..." Also I like how they print what Palin turned down, but nothing about what she accepted. But why tell the full story when opinion is so easily swayed by only parts of it?