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The Courageous Bobby Jindal

Posted by Ender on February 21, 2009

Bobby Jindal

Bobby Jindal

Yesterday Bobby Jindal the governor of Louisiana officially declined at least some of his state’s portion of the stimulus bill.  Jindal did not want to burden La’s businesses with the additional taxes that would come with the money.  One of the portions he rejected was the $98 million that was to be used to enlarge the unemployment benefits to people who under current law would not receive them.  He rejected the money because it would be a huge burden on business in his state after the Federal money ran out.

“Increasing taxes on our Louisiana businesses is certainly not a way to stimulate our economy. It would be the exact wrong thing we could do to encourage further growth and job creation”

“Our state is facing a serious budget situation, and it would be irresponsible to enter into an expansion of benefits right now that would ultimately increase taxes on the very businesses we are working to support during these tough economic times”

Jindal is exactly right.  It takes a lot of courage to not take the government hand out.  It reminds me of the Coldplay lyric from the song “Fix You” it says “When you get what you want but not what you need.”  I think most State Governors are so eager to get what they want, which is the easy money.  They completely ignore that what they really need is fiscal discipline and fiscal responsibility.  They need to find a way to promote business growth, investment and job creation without burdening future generations for decades with irresponsible subsidies.

Jindal is one of three Governors who are looking to reject some of the Federal stimulus package.  The other two are Gov. Mark Sanford (SC) and Gov. Sarah Palin (AK).

These three deserve our support.  We need Governors who will lead their states with Free Market principles.  We need them to show the rest of the country that it works and it is the only way to recover.

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Update 2/22/09 8:14AM:

Mississippi’s Haley Barbour is also rejecting portions of the stimulus.

A few Governors are critical of the move to reject some of the funds.  Two of them are Crist from Florida and Schwarzenegger.  Now, seeing what Schwarzenegger has done to destroy the economy of California, do you think anyone should follow his advice on economic matters?  I didn’t think so.

Bobby Jindal will be debating his actions on Meet the Press this morning with Charlie Crist.

Stay tuned I will have a debate recap up sometime in the next two days.

Update 2/22/09 9:17pm:

Well, it turns out they weren’t really debating, which made it a whole lot less exciting. Jindal fielded several questions from the host.

I think he presented the conservative case well. Highlight of the interview was when Gregory tried to trap him with a La. senator’s (?) statement that the unemployment tax would be temporary. Jindal replied with something like “if you had read the portion of the bill that covered the unemployment tax you would have seen that the tax was listed as ‘permanent.'” Not temporary as the senator implied.

2 Responses to “The Courageous Bobby Jindal”

  1. The Dude said

    Governor Bobby Jindal looks like the kind of guy that I can trust to sell me car insurance. He made a tough choice, one that I believe will help his state, but I fear will have a strong blowback from the urban areas, which would have benefited (or so they think) from much of the funds that were just rejected. Of the three governors who have rejected this money, only Bob-O is one with a city that has a metro population of over 1,000,000 (Alaska – Anchorage, 280,000 / South Carolina – Columbia, 754,000 / Louisiana – New Orleans, 1,030,000). While I believe that he made a smart long-term choice, Bobby – or Piyush (as I call him) better hope that it pays of in the short-term as well, or he may be looking at the business end of an angry state…

  2. Ender said

    Rejecting the stimulus alone won’t save the state. Jindal is also looking to cut taxes. He is planning to give tax amnesty for two months, which will waive late penalties and cut interest in half. This should drive about $150 million in additional revenues for the state. So there will be some short term impact.

    The other thing to remember is that Jindal is a great communicator. If he is able to explain how his actions benefit the state the blowback will be substantially less.

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