McDonnell Fits Himself for Flip-Flops


    On May 21 Bob McDonnell told the right-wing people at Human Events this about the debt ceiling and the deficit: “The only way that it is appropriate to increase the debt limit is if there is a tangible, written, irreversible set of structural reforms in spending in the United States government that makes sure we are on a downward trajectory in spending that will get us to a balanced budget much farther. If we don’t achieve those goals, then I don’t see any gain in increasing the debt limit.” In other words, in May McDonnell was just fine with a default by the United States unless the GOPers got whatever they wanted.

    What a difference a couple of months make! Just this week when Moody’s Investor Services said that Virginia would be one of five states to have its bond rating downgraded as a result of a federal default, McDonnell changed his tune. On MSNBC, Bob “Flip-Flop” McDonnell insisted, “There’s got to be a compromise, I’m not going to tell them how to do it. I’d suggest they try spending cuts – everybody knows they’re spending too much. But they’ve got to get this done immediately or the uncertainty for the business community is going to be just devastating to our country.”

    I hate to point out to McDonnell just what drastic, abrupt cuts in federal spending would mean for the state he pretends to lead, but I will. This state gets back from Washington $1.40 for each $1 we send to the federal government. There are over 300,000 federal employees living in Virginia. The state has predicated the economic health of Hampton Roads on military spending. In other words, we are one of the states that depends on the welfare of the federal government for its well-being.

    As Jacob Brankley from Blacksburg wrote as a comment to the Richmond Times-Dispatch about McDonnell, “Interesting that the governor stayed on the sidelines as if this wasn’t his problem until the state’s Aaa credit rating was on a downgrade watch list because of VA’s reliance on federal spending. It was laughable to watch him on CNBC bragging about how VA is the top state for business when in fact it is profoundly if not crucially reliant on federal spending. Republicans want smaller government and spending cuts instead of higher taxes. Well, just where do they think that the federal spending cuts should come from? To cut federal spending would be to hit VA’s primary source of revenue. They can’t have it both ways. Are they so deluded as to think they can have their cake and eat it too? I’m sure the governor feels that there should be steep cuts in federal spending…just so long as none of them hit his state.”

    That;s exactly on the mark. There is no way Virginia could be the relatively affluent state we know if Ken Cuccinelli, Bob McDonnell, and their followers actually got their way. This won’t be the last flip-flop McDonnell will be forced to execute.

    • KathyinBlacksburg

      truth to voters. The policies of his party are the real job killers.  How have Virginians let him get away with this?  They must have reached new levels of cluelessness.  But voters are beginning to see more clearly by the day that WI-style austerity is harmful even without federal austerity and the high percentage of federal workers that Virginia has.  

      Add to the mix federal austerity and you have a huge problem. So, here’s the thing: Most Republicans know, or should know that Red States get more federal dollars than blue states.  (That, along with gerrymandering/redistricting, is how Red States are kept that way).  So GOP leaders, including governors, are hoping to pull the rug out from under their own voters, who disproportionately experience the beneficence of American voters?  You have to be either a sadist, and/or an extreme ideologue to hold such a position.

      Amazingly, these same Republican governors, who like McDonnell purport to want austerity for their state’s federal dollars, jumped in front of the camera to take credit for the President’s stimulus package. McDonnell even used  huge chunk of Virginia’s share to balance the books instead of actually, say, create jobs!