When an Opinion Journal article focuses on the same topic as a Washington Post article, you know that it’s important. That’s why I took notice when both focused on the Jimmy Carter Memorial Bill. First, let’s look at James Freeman’s Opinion Journal op-ed:

President Obama’s $825 billion (and counting) “stimulus” is steamrolling through Congress. One group of conservative Republicans is betting that it will only worsen the country’s economic plight.

That’s where the House Republican Study Committee comes in. “No Trillion Dollar Spending Spree” is the message from this conservative caucus. Led by its new chairman, Rep. Tom Price of Georgia, the RSC now counts more than 100 House Republicans among its members. Mr. Price calls the Democrats’ proposal “the non-stimulus plan” and says it “simply won’t work” because it offers no market incentives to create jobs. What the plan does offer are multibillion-dollar gifts to state governments, teachers unions, and the environmental lobby, with such gems as a $6 billion program to “weatherize modest-income homes.”

It’s time conservatives showed they had a spine. It’s even better that they’re listening to their base. The Jimmy Carter Memorial Bill is loaded with lots of wasteful spending. Five years ago, this bill would’ve passed with little opposition. Today, there’s vocal opposition to it. Some of that opposition is coming from Democrats, though for a different reason:

In testimony before the House Budget Committee yesterday, Alice M. Rivlin, who was President Bill Clinton’s budget director, suggested splitting the plan, implementing its immediate stimulus components now and taking more time to plan the longer-term transformative spending to make sure it is done right.

“Such a long-term investment program should not be put together hastily and lumped in with the anti-recession package. The elements of the investment program must be carefully planned and will not create many jobs right away,” said Rivlin, a fellow at the Brookings Institution. The risk, she said, is that “money will be wasted because the investment elements were not carefully crafted.”

It isn’t that Ms. Rivlin is opposed to spending fistfuls of taxpayer money. It’s that she’s opposed to hastily spending the taxpayer’s money.

It’s worth noting that, in suggesting that the spending bills be split, that she talked about things that would stimulate the economy and things that would improve infrastructure. She didn’t mention a thing about $4.2 billion in grants to ACORN and like-minded organizations. She didn’t mention $335 million in funding to the CDC for STD education and prevention.

UPDATE: According to MajorityTracker.com, the roll call for final passage was 244-188. The Ayes and Nays haven’t been posted yet. Check this link later today for the Ayes and Nays.

UPDATE II: The Washington Post is reporting that “11 Democrats and 177 Republicans [voted] against it.” It’ll be interesting to see which Democrats broke ranks with Ms. Pelosi.

UPDATE III: The NY Times has posted an interactive chart that identifies the 11 Democrats who voted against the stimulus package. Voting against the spending bill were Collin Peterson, Gene Taylor, Walt Minnick, Brad Ellsworth, Heath Schuler, Parker Griffith, Bobby Bright, F. Alan Boyd, Frank Kratovil, Paul Kanjorski and Jim Cooper.

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Cross-posted at California Conservative

5 Responses to “WSJ, Washington Post On Jimmy Carter Memorial Bill”

  • kb says:

    I didn’t think Peterson would have the stones to vote against it. Good for him. His blue dog credentials are hereby restamped.

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