Missouri’s Republican pols have been vociferous in condemning the stimulus package enacted last spring. From quibbling about the numbers of jobs saved, to viciously attacking the program because all our problems have not gone away a few scant months after our economy nearly bottomed out, their rhetoric has been uniformly shrill and accusing. For instance, according to Todd Akin, the stimulus was a “tragic waste of taxpayer money,” a sentiment echoed by Blaine Luetkemeyer who declared the “so-called stimulus package” to be a “catastrophic failure.” For Roy Blunt, the stimulus was an “absolute outrage.”
You get the idea – I could produce dozens of such quotes – pick your Republican and I can promise he or she put some ugly words out there about the stimulus – although, it does bear noting that Blunt and Lutekemeyer did manage to hold their tongues when they were hustling to take credit for stimulus awards to their districts – but that’s another matter altogether.
It is, however, just this excess of partisan bile that made it all the sweeter when we learned today, that the U.S. economy grew during the last quarter at the highest rate in six years, a result that many are attributing directly or indirectly to the stimulus effects:
This broad-based rise in GDP was surely fueled in part by the tax cuts and investment spending in the Recovery Act and other rescue actions, but some appears to be the result of private sector demand returning
According to Mark Zandi, a former economic advisor to John McCain, the “stimulus was key to the 4th quarter.”
Hard times are not gone yet – but things are definitely looking up. As the President observed after noting that the economy had contracted 6.4% in the first three months of last year:
You’ve seen a 12 percent reversal in the course of (last) year. This turnaround is the biggest in three decades, and it didn’t happen by accident
So when do you expect that we will hear the likes of Akin, Luetkemeyer and Blunt admit that they were wrong? And, even more to the point, when will Missourians tell them and the rest of their gang that trash talk and tantrums just won’t do it anymore – we need them to get on the bandwagon instead of trying to overturn it.