Republicans quickly criticized the idea of such a vast [stimulus] initiative, saying Congress should instead cut taxes to spur economic growth.
"Democrats can't seem to stop trying to outbid each other -- with the taxpayers' money," House Minority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) said in a statement. "We're in tough economic times. Folks are hurting. But the American people know that more Washington spending isn't the answer."
Actually the American people know that more Washington spending is exactly the answer the nation needs. You would think that Republicans would just shut up for a while, considering their policies drove this nation into a ditch.
Steve Benen of the Washington Monthly's Political Animal had some great advice for people during an economic crisis.
In a time of severe economic crisis, it's important that all of us -- voters, policy makers, investors -- remember to do two key things. First, keep a cool head and avoid panic. Second, pay absolutely no attention to congressional Republicans, who have no idea what they're talking about.
Luckily Barack Obama and Democrats in Congress seem to be taking this advice to heart and seem to better understand both the gravity of the circumstances this nation faces and the necessity for a remedy. While Barack Obama, during the presidential campaign, had talked about a $175 billion stimulus program, he now is looking at a stimulus package that may be four times larger.
Senator Chuck Schumer of New York told George Stephanopoulos yesterday that the stimulus should be between $500 billion and $700 billion. Schumer said:
"It's a little like having a new New Deal, but you have to do it before the Depression. Not after."
ABC News' Jake Tapper reports that Obama's transition team would like to see the stimulus package be passed by Congress and be in the Oval Office waiting for the new President literally the day of the inauguration. There are lingering concerns, though, that a Republican filibuster may scuttle the plan.
This is why we really need Al Franken to win in Minnesota, Martin to win in Georgia, and we need to pull in Collins and Snowe up in Maine to keep Republican's from interfereing. If Republicans want to offer constructive advice, or real suggestions, they should be at the table. If they are going to throw up road blocks for no other purpose than to scuttle the Democrats, then they need to be shut out of the room.