Dem governors blast Congress, administration for their woes

posted at 10:30 am on July 11, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Earlier this week, my friend Eric Ostermeier at Smart Politics predicted a historical level of wins for the GOP in gubernatorial races.  At least one group of people seem to agree with Eric: Democratic governors.  And they’re pretty clear about who they blame for it, too:

Democratic governors facing grim budget choices, lingering unemployment and angry voters are pointing a finger at their colleagues in Democratic-controlled Washington to explain this year’s toxic political climate.

Few will fault President Barack Obama directly for their party’s plight heading into the fall midterm elections, but the chief executives gathered here for the National Governors Association (NGA) meeting believe the Congress and White House have made an already difficult year worse. …

“I think the bottom line is they’re not seeing the jobs that should have came from it,” said West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin, explaining why voters in his state were dissatisfied with the massive spending bill. “Are we just protecting government or are we really stimulating the economy? Maybe it’s too early too tell.”

Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter said expectations for the immediate impact of bill were set too high.

“They may have oversold the job creation part of it,” observed Ritter, whose 2006 election heralded a Democratic resurgence in the Mountain West and whose decision not to run for re-election this year has illustrated the party’s declining fortunes in the region.

“They’re not satisfied with the pace of job recovery that they expected when the Recovery Act was passed,” he said of his state’s citizens. “Whether the President of the United States inherited this situation or not, he’s now owning it. For the federal government, this administration and the Congress to have not delivered [jobs] more quickly has become the problem.”

They also unveiled what the party line will be in the fall:

“They didn’t do a good enough job from the get go explaining and getting everybody to understand that we can go off the cliff into a depression or spend money now and go into a recession,” said Gregoire, who is in her second term.

In fact, they didn’t make that case at all, at least not with Porkulus.  That was the argument from Congress and the Bush administration for the initial TARP bill, but the Obama administration’s only involvement with that was using it to bail out automakers — and to refuse use it to cover some of its deficit spending.  The argument for Porkulus was that it would keep unemployment under 8%, and that without it unemployment would go up to 10%.  The only reason we’re not over 10% now is that so many people have left the workforce; we’re at a generational low on civilian population participation in the workforce.

Democrats in Washington may be locked in an ivory tower, but governors have to deal with people outside of the Beltway.  They have a much better idea of how badly that argument will go over outside of Washington DC, even if a Washington governor offers it.


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But, but, it’s Bush’s fault! Didn’t they get the memo?

Dingbat63 on July 11, 2010 at 10:37 AM

I can see November from my house!

The Dems will be facing the perfect storm, followed by Thanksgiving for the rest of us!

heldmyw on July 11, 2010 at 10:37 AM

Few will fault President Barack Obama directly for their party’s plight

Of course not. That would be raaaaaaaaacist.

Daggett on July 11, 2010 at 10:39 AM

DEMOCRAT CIVIL WAR!

Weight of Glory on July 11, 2010 at 10:43 AM

Democrats in Washington may be locked in an ivory tower, but governors have to deal with people outside of the Beltway

.

Do you mean that there are people outside the beltway??? The hell you say……

/congress

ted c on July 11, 2010 at 10:44 AM

I still can’t believe how badly obama screwed the pooch on this one. I don’t think he’ll even run for re-election. Seriously, how do you explain losing the Gulf of Mexico?!?! Or spending trillions of dollars on about 600,000 rented “stimulus” funded jobs that lost us millions elsewhere? I think the MacBeth phase will set in soon.

abobo on July 11, 2010 at 10:46 AM

Few will fault President Barack Obama directly for their party’s plight heading into the fall midterm elections

Yes, even here where obama is consistently maligned, it is often couched in euphemistic terms. However, personally, I am rapidly reaching the point where my adjectives are going to say what I really think. Here’s a little tentative practice: ALL of the mess we are in (except possibly the causes of the oil spill) are obama’s fault. He is not this super intelligent being, he is downright dumb. It’s not just a social agenda with him, it’s also a race agenda. Not the best start I know, but I’ll work on it.

jeanie on July 11, 2010 at 10:46 AM

There was an interesting article yesterday about the worst job of all in politics: Governor.

Totally makes sense to me. Next up are major and deep slashes to public employees, which will devastate so many people’s lives, whether GOP or DEM.

It’s going to be ugly.

AnninCA on July 11, 2010 at 10:47 AM

Democrats in Washington may be locked in an ivory tower, but governors have to deal with people outside of the Beltway.

Which has always been the best argument for a strong inclination towards a healthy bit of federalism. It’s also why, when Obama tries for the next “solution” to the economic crisis that’s just around the corner, we should balk if it doesn’t include a heavy bit of decentralization and privatization. The way to go to really solve things will be to go smaller not bigger.

Weight of Glory on July 11, 2010 at 10:48 AM

Blue on Blue!

When teamates start bickering and pointing fingers, whatever the perception of others, they beleive they’re going to lose. And Dhims are the Terrell Owens’ of politics.

Archimedes on July 11, 2010 at 10:49 AM

Great news. If we win enough governorships, maybe a Constitutional amendment can be passed to rewrite the Commerce Clause. Since the Supremes won’t limit it’s reach, we can.

GnuBreed on July 11, 2010 at 10:49 AM

Do you mean that there are people outside the beltway??? The hell you say……

/congress

ted c on July 11, 2010 at 10:44 AM

Well, yes, but ever since Harry Reid built the new visitors center, Congress does not have to get too close to the Great Unwashed.

Wethal on July 11, 2010 at 10:52 AM

But someone should remind the governors that they could have saved their states all sorts of troubles by going Christie on their budgets instead of using the Stimulus cash to paper over the serious cracks.

myrenovations on July 11, 2010 at 10:52 AM

A question for the knowledgeable: Due to the stimulus, how many union jobs have been lost, compared to the balance?

OldEnglish on July 11, 2010 at 10:54 AM

Give me a break. These govs used the “porkulus” to pay off supporters and plug their own state deficits. Now they’re whining that there are not any jobs.

Tasha on July 11, 2010 at 10:54 AM

Governor Strickland of Ohio : Why don’t you lead the charge to reduce taxes on companies in your state? Seems you share blame.

CWforFreedom on July 11, 2010 at 10:55 AM

You’re kidding me! The stimulous bill didn’t create jobs in the private sector? All that money went to save public employee union jobs? How come nobody brought this up before?

Oh, wait a minute—–never mind.

dirtseller on July 11, 2010 at 11:00 AM

I can see November from my house!

heldmyw on July 11, 2010 at 10:37 AM

Thank you for the chuckle – I loves me some ‘cuda in the morning!

Cry me a freakin’ river! These so-called Governors (Senators, Representatives, Federal and State) deserve what they are about to get good and hard.

What we are witnessing is the progressive ideology, naked and raw, on display.

And it is (unsurprisingly) failing miserably.

Nothing short of complete political extinction would be sufficient for these people. Toss them on the ash heap of history right along side the Whigs.

Damn them all.

turfmann on July 11, 2010 at 11:02 AM

“Whether the President of the United States inherited this situation or not, he’s now owning it.”

Ritter burns Obi-Won! Game over, Chumpster!

ya2daup on July 11, 2010 at 11:02 AM

“Are we just protecting government or are we really stimulating the economy? Maybe it’s too early too tell.”

TOO EARLY TO TELL?

This guy needs to be kicked out of office.

Come on November!

GarandFan on July 11, 2010 at 11:05 AM

…I don’t think he’ll even run for re-election…

abobo on July 11, 2010 at 10:46 AM

Sure he will. Sadly, and incredibly, he’s no worse off than Bush was just 6 months before his re-election in 2004.

IrishEi on July 11, 2010 at 11:05 AM

Let them eat arugula.

Mojave Mark on July 11, 2010 at 11:06 AM

If I was the smartest president in the history of the universe, I would want to show my 4.0 GPA in college. Now If I were not….

jukin on July 11, 2010 at 11:06 AM

But someone should remind the governors that they could have saved their states all sorts of troubles by going Christie on their budgets instead of using the Stimulus cash to paper over the serious cracks.

myrenovations on July 11, 2010 at 10:52 AM

Too many Dem governors have poltiical machines that require patronage jobs, state contracts for projects to political favorites and unions, and of course, generous contracts for all unionized government workers.

If they also have a constitution that requires a balanced budget, the feds are the only one who can balnace it for them.

Wethal on July 11, 2010 at 11:07 AM

The dems are starting to turn on Barry. They have to, it is now a matter of survival for their party.

Vashta.Nerada on July 11, 2010 at 11:08 AM

myrenovations on July 11, 2010 at 10:52 AM

How it has to just kill these Dimwits that Christie has set an example of how to start tackling their budget problems and not one of them chose to do it earlier. Instead they smoked the Stimulus dope.

ya2daup on July 11, 2010 at 11:09 AM

Goverment stats

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm

In June, about 2.6 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force, an increase of 415,000 from a year earlier. These individuals were not in the labor
force, wanted and were available for work, and had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months.

Among the marginally attached, there were 1.2 million discouraged workers in June, up by 414,000 from a year earlier. Discouraged workers are persons not currently
looking for work because they believe no jobs are available for them.

The remaining 1.4 million persons marginally attached to the labor force had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey for reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities.

Total nonfarm payroll employment decreased by 125,000 in June, reflecting the departure of 225,000 temporary Census 2010 workers from federal government payrolls.

Within professional and business services, employment continued to increase in temporary help services (+21,000). Employment in temporary help has risen by 379,000 since a recent low in September 2009.

Government employment fell by 208,000 in June, driven by the loss of 225,000 temporary workers hired for Census 2010. Employment in both state and local governments was little changed over the month.

William Amos on July 11, 2010 at 11:10 AM

IrishEi on July 11, 2010 at 11:05 AM,

Well the economy was doing very well then even though the MSM was talking it down every day. and that can work in good times Now the economy is very bad and talking it up will not work when your family, neighbors, and yourself are all unemployed.

jukin on July 11, 2010 at 11:10 AM

I wonder how many of the Dem losers will speak out and blame the Dem congress and Obama the day after November elections. Probably won’t be in their concession speeches but I hope they offer a few juicy soundbites shortly thereafter.

sherry on July 11, 2010 at 11:11 AM

My reading and listening seems to say that the stimulus money was spend on shoring up welfare and Medicare obligations. Wondering if this has now run out and they need more? As for down sizing state government, there’s an outside, very outside, chance that that may happen but I will not hold my breath. The really bothersome thing here is that in order to force constructive change of any kind this mess will have to persist for a long time and directly or indirectly we’ll all be hurt. (Except the Obama’s of course. Did anyone besides me link to Michelle’s $635 shoes that look like vinyl from Walmart? lol Does she have an Eva Peron thing?)

jeanie on July 11, 2010 at 11:11 AM

“Illegal Workers Swept From Jobs in ‘Silent Raids’ in Washington STATE.

Immigration enforcement for Washington State but NOT for Arizona State? Whats the difference?

Jan Brewer is a Republican but Christine Gregoire is a Democrat. I guess if you aren’t a Democrat the Federal Government doesn’t recognize you as A AMERICAN STATE?

When someone is elected to the Office of the President of the United States they are EVERYONE’S President not just their Political Parties President.

John McCain’s campaign slogan sure is coming back to haunt this Administration “Country First” Apparently NOT.

Dr Evil on July 11, 2010 at 11:14 AM

The blaming Bush meme has to stop. Glad to hear Ritter saying it. Karl Rove made the point that Obama ran for President knowing what the problems were and claiming he could fix them. Not only can he not fix them, he’s making them many times worse. Everyone needs to be pointing this out…over and over again. It needs to drown out “the failed Bush policies of the last 8 years”. Obama claims an inheritance, thus he owns it!

texabama on July 11, 2010 at 11:16 AM

“the failed Bush policies of the last 8 years”. Obama claims an inheritance, thus he owns it!

texabama on July 11, 2010 at 11:16 AM

The Dems won Congress in 2006. That was almost 4 years ago. Weird how the economy truly tanked after they won.

CWforFreedom on July 11, 2010 at 11:21 AM

Now how many of these lovely Governors have a Public Pension crisis looming that they refuse to do anything about? It isn’t about CA, although its the worst offender… put ‘public pension crisis’ into the search engine of your choice and see the goodness across the board on the insolvency of pension funds Nation wide.

So, instead of doing something about their State’s problems or using the Porkulus to actually get rid of public sector employees and trim their budgets, these fine fools complain they were willingly sold a bill of goods which, Lo!, is a bill of goods.

Pot, meet Kettle. Kettle, Pot.

Have a nice and cozy time in the fire, you two…

ajacksonian on July 11, 2010 at 11:25 AM

jukin on July 11, 2010 at 11:10 AM

I hope you’re right. I get very discouraged looking at Rasmussen’s Approval Index. He’s been holding steady for months despite his outrageous actions and missteps:

The stability of the president’s numbers remains noteworthy. Over the past two months, the number who Strongly Approve of the president’s performance has stayed in the narrow range from 24% to 29% every day. During that time frame, the number who Strongly Disapprove has generally stayed in the 39% to 45% range.

IrishEi on July 11, 2010 at 11:26 AM

ALL of the mess we are in (except possibly the causes of the oil spill) are obama’s fault. He is not this super intelligent being, he is downright dumb. It’s not just a social agenda with him, it’s also a race agenda.

jeanie on July 11, 2010 at 10:46 AM

I would love to agree with you that Obama is dumb, but I think it is much worse than that. I think what he and the lefties are doing is part of their agenda; that is, to take us down a notch or two.

yubley on July 11, 2010 at 11:27 AM

Manchin, the incoming chairman of the NGA and a likely candidate to replace the late Sen. Robert C. Byrd (D-W.Va.), said the administration wasn’t sympathetic to his state’s coal-dependent economy.
“We’re out of sync,” he said. “We have very differing views. There’s a balance to be had between the environment and the economy. And it looks as if they’re over-tipping that.”
He added: “I can’t correct all the sins of the past overnight and you can’t basically throw all my people out of work overnight, either.”

.
Bwaaaahahahahahaa!
Wanna bet?

mrt721 on July 11, 2010 at 11:27 AM

Yeah, I’d like to think they would stop running on the “blame Bush” ticket, but sadly from everything I have read they plan to run on exactly that. Every “campaign” stop Obama has made in the last month has been “It’s Bushes fault, and the Republicans to.At this point it’s all they’ve got.

sandee on July 11, 2010 at 11:28 AM

This right here is why I am a little more skeptical about the Dems supposedly going nuclear in a lame-duck session. Their own $STATE Democratic Parties would be hosed, and are probably giving them an earful as we speak.

Sekhmet on July 11, 2010 at 11:30 AM

Dems shoot themselves in the foot, but will still manage to blame Bush for it. They made their beds with their pompous, and arrogance, now they can lie in them.

capejasmine on July 11, 2010 at 11:32 AM

I would love to agree with you that Obama is dumb, but I think it is much worse than that. I think what he and the lefties are doing is part of their agenda; that is, to take us down a notch or two.

yubley on July 11, 2010 at 11:27 AM

or 10. Destruction of this country is the aim….and rebuilding it in Obama’s image is the future.

capejasmine on July 11, 2010 at 11:35 AM

giving them an earful as we speak.

Sekhmet on July 11, 2010 at 11:30 AM

Yes, probably, but when has Obama ever let common sense or majority opinion influence anything he wants or plans.

jeanie on July 11, 2010 at 11:35 AM

Someone here yesterday said that all O had left was to energize his base and hope that GOP leaning voters do not turn out. I think that’s probably correct. Politics is the WH’s game, not governance.

jeanie on July 11, 2010 at 11:38 AM

Get the impression these Governors will not exactly be boo-hooing in their beers if the scope of power in the Congress shifts in the fall?

YOU BETCHA!

pilamaye on July 11, 2010 at 11:47 AM

Governor Brewer better watch her back. Just read in the news that Holder is not ruling out a second law suit against Arizona. Said they are watching very closely for any racial profiling. Now you and I know that they are going to set up a case of racial profiling. I hope all law enforcement has cameras and witnesses to every stop.

sandee on July 11, 2010 at 11:48 AM

I can see November from my house!


heldmyw on July 11, 2010 at 10:37 AM

Nice!

PakviRoti on July 11, 2010 at 11:49 AM

What the Democratic congress and White House can’t seem to grasp is that taxpayers file two tax returns: state and federal. When the folks in Washington “pass the costs to the states,” the same people are being sent the bill… only on the state return, instead of the federal one.

VastRightWingConspirator on July 11, 2010 at 11:53 AM

“we are who we have been waiting for”

mjbrooks3 on July 11, 2010 at 11:56 AM

I hope you’re right. I get very discouraged looking at Rasmussen’s Approval Index. He’s been holding steady for months despite his outrageous actions and missteps:
The stability of the president’s numbers remains noteworthy. Over the past two months, the number who Strongly Approve of the president’s performance has stayed in the narrow range from 24% to 29% every day. During that time frame, the number who Strongly Disapprove has generally stayed in the 39% to 45% range.
IrishEi on July 11, 2010 at 11:26 AM

Between the 91% of blacks who still “strongly approve,” and the hard- core democrat base who will always strongly support any dem, he’ll probably never slip below a 20% ‘strongly approve’ rating.

LASue on July 11, 2010 at 11:56 AM

Do you mean that there are people outside the beltway??? The hell you say……

ted c on July 11, 2010 at 10:44 AM

No…just workers

BobMbx on July 11, 2010 at 12:05 PM

I would love to agree with you that Obama is dumb, but I think it is much worse than that. I think what he and the lefties are doing is part of their agenda; that is, to take us down a notch or two OUT.

yubley on July 11, 2010 at 11:27 AM

You were really close, though. ;)

turfmann on July 11, 2010 at 12:07 PM

The dems are starting to turn on Barry. They have to, it is now a matter of survival for their party.

Vashta.Nerada on July 11, 2010 at 11:08 AM

I agree that the “blue dogs” are turning..but the moonbats are still in the fold.

Dire Straits on July 11, 2010 at 12:07 PM

Ingrates

SaintGeorgeGentile on July 11, 2010 at 12:21 PM

Simply compare the motives of both Obama and Bush.

Metanis on July 11, 2010 at 12:31 PM

IrishEi on July 11, 2010 at 11:26 AM

Remember, the Strongly Disapproves are always at least 10 percent more than the Strongly Approves at all points. This probably tracks with true-blue leftist Democrats versus true-red conservative Republicans. What got 0bama elected were the weaker Approve and Disapprove numbers, the independents and the non-hardc0re partisans.

Note that the general Approve numbers are not much higher than the Strongly Approve numbers.

Sekhmet on July 11, 2010 at 12:36 PM

What kills me is how they tell us we need the stimulus to save (or create) all of these government jobs. For us taxpayers, another person on the public payroll is just another mouth for us to feed. It’s NOT good news.

PackerBronco on July 11, 2010 at 12:53 PM

If the Governors were smart, they would push for repealing the 17th Amendment. Getting the Senate back under control of the states would be a step in the right direction.

ny59giants on July 11, 2010 at 12:54 PM

Never trust Holder or Justice while he’s in charge. If you’re white, you’re screwed.

jeanie on July 11, 2010 at 1:07 PM

Everyone needs to be pointing this out…over and over again. It needs to drown out “the failed Bush policies of the last 8 years”. Obama claims an inheritance, thus he owns it!

texabama on July 11, 2010 at 11:16 AM

If by “everyone” you mean the media, well…wake me when they start doing their job. I don’t expect they will. They have too much invested in their messiah with the dumbo ears. I’m realistically looking toward the general electorate seeing the disconnect between his sycophantic press and the sick state of the economy and acting on what they see, not what they hear.

Extrafishy on July 11, 2010 at 1:34 PM

“we can go off the cliff into a depression or spend money now and go into a recession”

The choice they chose is to spend the money now, and delay the depression for a few months. The stuff they decided to spend the money on didn’t do anything to add to the future economy. Simply paying someone unemployment benefits does nothing to add to the economy once the payments stop. Building a coast to coast high speed, nuclear powered, electric rail line WOULD add something to the economy long after it has been completed.

They have chosen to spend the money on beer and cigarettes instead of on steel and concrete. Even the “shovel ready” spending only sped up projects that were going to be done anyway. It is like “cash for clunkers” for civic works programs. Once those projects were done, there is nothing else on the books to do.

crosspatch on July 11, 2010 at 1:43 PM

What is sick these days is that if you are a native in this country you can’t even get a lowly job as a fry cook even if you are willing to take one because you can’t communicate with the rest of the help who only speak spanish. Nobody will hire an “English only” speaker for lower paying jobs.

crosspatch on July 11, 2010 at 1:49 PM

The blaming Bush meme has to stop.

texabama on July 11, 2010 at 11:16 AM

It’s not going to stop. How could it, they’ve got nothing else!

Oldnuke on July 11, 2010 at 2:43 PM

“They didn’t do a good enough job from the get go explaining and getting everybody to understand that we can go off the cliff into a depression or spend money now and go into a recession,” said Gregoire, who is in her second term.”

That’s because then, as now, everyone would have known those weren’t the only options available. People wouldn’t have accepted such a lame excuse then anymore than they will now. In fact had anyone proposed then that those were the only possible alternatives the Dems would have been the first to viciously attack them for it. Obama was all about “happy days are here again”. Obama promised that even though it was as bad as it could be he was going to completely remedy everything. Unemployment would never exceed 8%. Hope and Change baby.

tommyboy on July 11, 2010 at 3:42 PM

The blaming Bush meme has to stop.

texabama on July 11, 2010 at 11:16 AM

It’s not going to stop. How could it, they’ve got nothing else!

Oldnuke on July 11, 2010 at 2:43 PM

-
Let the… ‘They stole trillion$ and promised jobs… Where the hell are the JOBS?” meme begin.

RalphyBoy on July 11, 2010 at 3:55 PM

DEMOCRAT CIVIL WAR!

Weight of Glory on July 11, 2010 at 10:43 AM

That would entail lots of slapping and hair-pulling. (Unless of course they call out SEIU, or one of their other enforcement wings.)

I can’t help but picture Gibbs with his eyes closed, slapping wildly at the air. And Emanuel standing there naked with his hands on his hips, yelling obscenities.

Squiggy on July 11, 2010 at 5:01 PM

“They may have oversold the job creation part of it,” observed Ritter,

What the hell else was there? They were going to spend over a trillion dollars for what? Can anybody point to anything Porkulus gave us? If they had at least built a fence protecting the southern border, we’d at least have something to point to, like Hoover Dam. As it is, my government spent a trillion dollars and all I got was some road constructions signs and a turtle tunnel in Florida.

PatMac on July 11, 2010 at 5:03 PM

This right here is why I am a little more skeptical about the Dems supposedly going nuclear in a lame-duck session. Their own $STATE Democratic Parties would be hosed, and are probably giving them an earful as we speak.

Sekhmet on July 11, 2010 at 11:30 AM

I agree, everyone’s worried what they might do in a lame-duck session after the elections. I think it’s going to be a circular firing squad, all the losers blasting each other as opposed to some sort of magical coming-together and passing legislation.

PatMac on July 11, 2010 at 5:07 PM

Amazing how passionate a pol gets when its his unemployment number that’s going to be rising.

chickasaw42 on July 11, 2010 at 7:53 PM

So the Governors don’t get it yet that governmental jobs stimuli are deadly rather than curative. It’d really be nice to have a government made up of Austrian school economists for decade or two at a time for a change.

{^_^}

herself on July 12, 2010 at 8:32 AM

Great news. If we win enough governorships, maybe a Constitutional amendment can be passed to rewrite the Commerce Clause. Since the Supremes won’t limit it’s reach, we can.

GnuBreed on July 11, 2010 at 10:49 AM

http://realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2010/governor/2010_elections_governor_map.html

Per Real Clear Politics, current predictions are for 26 Republican Governors, 12 Democrats, and 11 states are considered “tossups”, of which 7 are currently held by Democrats (CO, IL, ME, MD, NM,

Steve Z on July 12, 2010 at 11:07 AM