Republicans from Washington, D.C., including Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele, are crisscrossing the state in an attempt to confuse Tennessee voters into believing the weak job market is a result of current economic policies.
“I’m confident Tennessee voters remember what got us into this mess in the first place,” Tennessee Democratic Party Chairman Chip Forrester said. “It was the failed economic policies of a Republican White House that was more concerned about helping the bottom line of its Wall Street and Big Business buddies.
“This Congress and this White House have turned things around for us. We’ve emerged from a deep recession, but we still have a long way to go before this economy churns out the level of jobs it was before George Bush took office.
“Tennessee Republicans like Sens. Bob Corker and Lamar Alexander, along with Reps. John Duncan, Phil Roe, Zach Wamp and Marsha Blackburn, seem to have a memory block about what happened. They want to blame Democrats when they know full well it was their Republican leadership that nearly sent our economy into a ditch.”
Forrester pointed out that the entire Republican congressional delegation from Tennessee voted against the Recovery Act last year, a package that has committed $6 billion in federal funding to help the state create or retain more than 10,000 jobs and provide much-needed infrastructure improvements. Included in that funding package is $500 million in Race to the Top funds helping Tennessee complete a comprehensive reform of its schools.
“It is shameful that each of them has the audacity to come back home and take credit for the very projects they voted against,” Forrester said of the state’s Republican congressional delegation.
“Whether it’s a new $11 million school construction project over in Hamblen County or a $483 million investment at the Spring Hill General Motors plant to create 500 jobs, Republicans want to take credit for it. If that isn’t the ultimate example of hypocrisy, I don’t know what is.”
Forrester also called the Republicans so-called “Pledge to America” a gimmick that would send our economy into the same ditch from which we are now climbing out.
“They would rather continue to protect corporate loopholes and their Wall Street buddies than help ordinary hard-working Tennesseans find a job or send their children to a good college,” Forrester said. “Their pledge is nothing more than a gimmick. We cannot afford to go down that path again.”