Sunday, April 11, 2010

MN-02 : Kline Needs A New Stump Speech

Why is it that whenever I hear John Kline speak, the memorable quote “The negativity in this town sucks" pops into my head ?

Minnesota sports fans are all too familiar with the Rick Pitino’s words that he used after a tirade against Boston media and fans; as it is often played on KFAN radio to protest anything bad happening in Minnesota sports.

The message is clear … things are not as bad as it seems but if the messengers repeat gloom and doom, people presume the worst.

That’s Mr. Kline (R-MN-02) objective … he wants everyone to blame all of America’s problems on Speaker Pelosi and President Obama … never mentioning the Bush years … which coincided with his years in Congress.

Mr. Kline’s most recent press release states “More than a year after majority leadership enacted their budget-busting government stimulus plan, the national unemployment rate remains nearly two percentage points higher than the White House predicted, and 15 million Americans are still looking for work.

Mr. Kline is right … the Obama Administration did predict a lower number … the fault goes to the Administration for providing too optimistic a forecast. But part of the reason may be to halt the “negativity” that was engulfing the country. This overshot may be more about the difficulty in economic forecasting than the efficacy of the stimulus … but more on that later.

In January 2009 when President Obama was sworn in, the global economy was in the midst of a recession, credit markets were frozen and the financial institutions faced the prospects of huge losses.

The first step to recovery had to be to calm financial markets. That has worked. On Friday, the Dow Jones hit "11,000 with less than 10 minutes left in the session, then closed at 10997, a gain of 70 points for the day.”
That was the first time since September 2008 (during the tenure of President Bush) it had eclipsed 11,000 … in other words, the stock market has recovered nicely under President Obama.

The second step was to halt the bleeding at the state level. So for example, schools got funding to stave off laying off teachers … such as Second District schools :
$ 16,707, 809 for Independent School District 196

$ 10,065,132 for Independent School District 833

$ 7,240,714 for Independent School District 191

$ 6,439,165 for Lakeville Area School District

$ 5,546,590 for Independent School District 112

$ 4,245,664 for Shakopee School District

$ 3,967,430 for Prior Lake - Savage School District

$ 3,704,868 for Independent School District 192

$ 3,226,995 for Hastings Independent School District 200

$ 3,107,745 for Independent School District 656

$ 2,731,768 for Independent School District 659

$ 2,482,639 for Independent School District 199

$ 2,128,638 for New Prague Independent School District 721

$ 1,805,686 for Waconia Independent School District 110

$ 1,280,181 for Independent School District 256

$ 1,040,109 for Watertown-Mayer School District

$ 993,932 for Independent School District 717

$ 959,295 for Belle Plaine Independent School District 716

$ 737,393 for Montgomery-Lonsdale Schools 394

$ 696,034 for Carver County Independent School District 108

$ 584,770 for Independent School District 2397

$ 540,819 for Cannon Falls Independent School District 252

$ 523,237 for Independent School District 255

$ 490,079 for Zumbrota-Mazeppa School District 2805

$ 449,678 for Waterville-Elysian-Morristown Schools 2143

$ 383,269 for Kenyon-Wanmingo School District 2172

$ 307,866 for Independent School District 195

$ 275,163 for Goodhue Independent School District 253

$ 163,166 for Cleveland Public School District 391

All parents (and taxpayers) understand that these federal dollars saved schools from having to make choices that they did not want to make.

And just this week, Governor Pawlenty and MN-DOT released the highway construction projects … once again, the stimulus helped create jobs that otherwise may not have occurred.

Regardless of how it is characterized, the stimulus has done its part to stop the jobs freefall that was inevitable … the key question is would the number of job losses had been greater or lesser without the stimulus … on that, the simple answer is: it worked.

Yes, no one will be satisfied until all Americans that want a job can get one … sadly, we must accept the fact that some of those jobs that have moved overseas may never return. Therefore, job retraining programs being offered thorough the Minnesota’s Technical College programs -something that again the stimulus helped fund – offer great opportunities for workers.

Jobs will come once business are confident and demand is in place.
More good news here.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis reports : reports "Real gross domestic product -- the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the United States -- increased at an annual rate of 5.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2009. In the third quarter, real GDP increased 2.2 percent."

Comparing that data to the last year during the Bush Administration, the Bureau of Economic Analysis reports "Real gross domestic product -- the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the United States -- decreased at an annual rate of 6.3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2008".
Yep, Bush left us with negative GDP and Obama has already righted that ship.

Another measurement, the Commerce Department reported that U.S. wholesalers have now had eleventh straight monthly increase in sales.

We're not out of the woods, but the vector is turning in the right direction.
Local jobs could still be a problem ... especially for Minnesota ... that's why H.R. 4812, Local Jobs for America Act would ensure that those teaching and firefighters will stay employed a little longer.

Yes, Mr. Kline ... it's time to retire that "negativity" speech ... although in fairness, for the Second District, your performance has been pretty "negative" ... you voted against these programs. And your "Pork-free diet" has only hurt the District.


kecker said...

Amusing that this blog is supposedly a central view of MN politics, especially CD1.

However, of 23 posts (so far) ALL of them are bashing Republicans, despite them being the minority in both Minnesota and the US levels of government.

And of those 23, 16 are bashing Kline (CD2), including 15 of the last 16.

Why don't you just own up to what this blog is?? Just another liberal blog publishing DFL talking points?

Holly Cairns said...

I'm more liberal and believe there a lots of times this blog displays the central view. It's the Republicans that are having problems within their own party-- there used to be moderate Republicans, but where are they, now?