Today, Senator Schumer sent a letter to the White House arguing that the economic stimulus package doesn’t allow Governors to turn down certain parts of their state’s stimulus funds–they have to accept all or nothing:
As you know, Section 1607(a) of the economic recovery legislation provides that the Governor of each state must certify a request for stimulus funds before any money can flow. No language in this provision, however, permits the governor to selectively adopt some components of the bill while rejecting others. To allow such picking and choosing would, in effect, empower the governors with a line-item veto authority that President Obama himself did not possess at the time he signed the legislation. It would also undermine the overall success of the bill, as the components most singled out for criticism by these governors are among the most productive measures in terms of stimulating the economy.
In other words, the Bobby Jindals of America, the GOP Let-them-eat-cake caucus can’t take funding for that shiny new transportation project they’ve been eyeing while rejecting funds to help their constituents keep food on their tables.
It’s all or nothing–either Governors accept all the stimulus funds allocated to their states or they reject all of the money and leave their constituents to fend for themselves.
So what say you now, Governors Jindal, Sanford, and Barbour?
UPDATE: And the GOP’s oppose-it-at-all-costs strategy toward the economic stimulus package leads to problems like this:
In an interview with the Washington Times, the Republican governor of Utah on Monday said his party’s leaders in Congress’ lack of new ideas renders them so “inconsequential” that he doesn’t even bother to talk to them.
That’s not the Governor or California or Vermont or Rhode Island saying that; that’s the Governor of dead-red Utah calling the national Republican leadership “inconsequential”.
I wonder if the GOP realized that their opposition to the stimulus package would eventually become a wedge issue for their own party?