Friday, February 13, 2009
Do not believe for a moment that Judd Gregg withdrew his nomination because of the stimulus bill, or the firestorm that arose because of his not voting on the stimulus bill.
Remember, Gregg approached the White House for the job, not conversely, when the substance of the stimulus package was well-known, especially to Gregg who is ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee.
Moreover, Gregg supported the basic concept of stimulus on CNBC, but said it was inappropriate for him to cast a vote while he was under consideration for the Commerce Secretary's post. He flummoxed Larry Kudlow by asserting that the federal government was the consumer-of-last-resort in a contracting economy, and Kudlow came back later pleading with Gregg to remain true to Kudlow's principles.
Gregg also told Kudlow that deficits (for which Gregg maintained his hawkishness) would actually be worse if the stimulus did not pass due to decreased tax revenues and increased unemployment and Medicaid payments than the money they were spending.
So, Gregg was fully on-board not just with joining the Administration, but with the stimulus policy. The President had expressed, and Gregg was there to provide in internal councils, a need to reform major entitlement programs.
Do not, therefore, believe the baloney that Gregg withdrew because of disagreements on the stimulus or profound differences on other economic matters....(Click for remainder).