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June 8th, 2009
10:15 AM ET

S.C. governor's anti-stimulus stance

Gov. Mark Sanford talks to CNN's Kiran Chetry about his resistance to federal stimulus money.
Gov. Mark Sanford talks to CNN's Kiran Chetry about his resistance to federal stimulus money.

South Carolina stands to collect $2.8 billion in federal stimulus money, but the state's governor doesn't want all of it. In fact, Mark Sanford rejected $700 million. A lot of it was earmarked to go towards education and public works projects. Later today he will reluctantly sign the request for that money.

His state’s supreme court ruled Thursday he has to take the federal money. Governor Sanford spoke to Kiran Chetry on CNN’s “American Morning” Monday.

Kiran Chetry: Your state has an unemployment rate right now of 11.5%, the third-highest in the country. Also, according to some of the statistics, you have 15% of the people in South Carolina living in poverty, which is the 12th highest rate in the country. Doesn't your state desperately need all the money it can get?

Mark Sanford: Yes, but the question is in what form. I think when you look at the money that was going to come, in this case from the federal government, it came with very serious strings attached. In this case, it would have put us about a billion dollars in the hole 24 months from now. It would have prevented us making changes to the way our state government operates so we would have been on a firmer financial ground going forward. And it wouldn't have allowed us to shore up our finances in what could be a prolonged financial storm. So it came with very serious strings attached.

Chetry: You wanted to use some of that money to pay down the debt and they were not allowing you to do that?

Sanford: Yeah. We said, look, we're fourth in the nation on a per capita basis in our indebtedness. It seemed to us with this kind of windfall, and this money represents the lottery of all lottery wins for the state governments across the country, that it would be prudent to set some money aside. If a family won the lottery they wouldn't just go out and spend it all, they’d put some money aside for a rainy day, for paying down the credit card balance or paying off the mortgage and I don't know why state governments should be exempt from that same principle.

Chetry: It was actually some students and education officials that filed these lawsuits. One of them was an 18-year-old student by the name of Casey Edwards, a high school senior now going on to attend Duke. They were very concerned because they were saying it would have been teacher layoffs, etc., and that that $185 million will now go to prevent those things. Isn't it a good thing in terms of making sure teachers can get paid and layoffs prevented, since you are dealing with the third-highest unemployment rate in the nation?

Sanford: It's a longer conversation on the unemployment rate. We are the ninth fastest labor force growth in the United States of America. So one of the ways to lower the unemployment rate is to leave the upper northeast or “The Rust Belt;” load up the kids, load up the U-Haul, and say "we're out of here." That's a way of lowering your unemployment rate. We happen to have a lot of people entering our state and there’s an absorption number that sort of skews our numbers. But without challenging the number, let me say this, the court case that was brought was still predicated on, again, we've got to spend more money on education. I don't think dollars in education are the only cure to having a great educational system.

The question was can we make sure those dollars going to the education system actually go to teachers and actually go to classrooms, which is the front line of learning in the educational process. We will go this year in South Carolina from spending 3.3 to $3.5 billion, even without the stimulus money, on education in South Carolina. The tug-of-war all along in our state has been can we actually make some restructuring changes so less money is trapped in the administration, less money is trapped in outdated programs that no longer work and put that money into, again, the front line of education or law enforcement or a whole host of other services in our state. That's what the battle line was about. Holding some money back and paying down debt we thought to be eminently financially sensible rather than just taking the money and spending it and leaving in place a whole host of programs that in many cases don't work.

Chetry: You’ve basically become the nation's staunchest critic of the stimulus, the only governor to go to court over control of the money. Some conservatives are saying it positions you well for a presidential run in 2012. What's your response that some of this has to do with your political future?

Sanford: Well, you know, those who are critics say you're just doing it for that reason. What I would say in response is, give me a break. Look at the last 15 years that I've been in politics. When I was in Congress and turned away federal money nobody said I was running for president. I’ve got – you can call them zany, you can call them crazy, I call them principled – a long history of voting or acting this way when I think something is fundamentally skewed. When you look at the federal stimulus package and what you were just reporting on, stimulus money not producing the jobs the administration originally claimed, what I see is disastrous federal policy that will encumber the very students at schools across South Carolina right now with a mountain of debt they will be digging out of for a very, very long time.

Chetry: By the way, are you considering a 2012 run for president?

Sanford: No, I'm considering, you know, can I make it through this next week. Given today, can I make it through the day in terms of getting all the paperwork signed in what the [South Carolina] Supreme Court has now compelled with regard to us accepting this money. Again, something we think will prove to be both a mistake from the standpoint of restructuring that made in South Carolina and a mistake from the standpoint of federal finances I think will not be solved in issuing more debt to solve a problem that was created by too much debt. I'm focused on here and now. And as chairman of the Republican Governor's Association focused on a bunch of seats coming up in 2010.


Filed under: Politics
soundoff (52 Responses)
  1. J.J. Jatson

    What is wrong with extra marital status? In Africa that is not a crime. You can even have 12 women or wives if you like. Provided you can feed them and train the children no problem. However with Western Civilisation these days in Africa I can see men now doing the work of women like cooking and cleaning up the children while the women now decide what the man will cook and when to come to bed with her. It was not so with our fathers in those days may be because our fathers were the bread-winners, but today most women are now the bread winners and that is why most men in Africa are now looking very fat with big tommies as pregnant women and large buttocks. While the women are looking slim and the men generally very fat. God help us or is this end times?

    June 25, 2009 at 2:39 am |
  2. Typical Liberal Math

    @ "cransom" 4:14
    Either you can't add or you have been so brain washed by your Messiah that you actually believe yourself. If there were only 345 American citizens your figures would be correct. There are 300 million Americans and if you just give a million dollar handout, like I'm sure your fellow libs would really appreciate, the cost would be closer to $3.45 Trillion. Since you are not educated enough to figure this out, I figure you are probably not educated enough to pay income taxes either... so who cares where the money comes from right???

    June 9, 2009 at 10:28 am |
  3. Tex in TX

    This is another scheme by Sanford to keep the poor marginalized so people like him can maintain their grip on power. The ones that are paying the price for his arrogance are the poor whites and blacks in SC. We need to get these neocon neanderthals out of government. They have no vision for their states except to maintain the status quo. States like South Carolina receive more from the Federal Government that they contribute. It is time to tell people–I am being generous–to put up or shut up! I hope I don't see this a–hole campaigning in Texas!

    June 9, 2009 at 8:47 am |
  4. cm

    He admits he needs the money, but he is concerned about strings? Its called responsibility and accountability, Governor. If you gave your kid an allowance, would you allow him to buy beer with it? Sanford seems to think that he can spend the money on whatever he please, rather than what is intended for. The idea that he should use money designated for education to pay a debt he incurred as governor is dodging his personal responsibility as a chief executive. While he does make a valid point about ending programs in education that do not work, he needs funds to support the programs that do work. I also take issue with his characterization of people moving into his state as a group of swarming locusts with U-Hauls, but maybe its because he frightened at the notion of his state turning blue soon.

    June 9, 2009 at 8:34 am |
  5. Jason

    I am so sick of these republican governors. Their states are in desperate need of money yet they want to make the people of their state suffer because of their pathetic partisan loyalty to a party that got us into this mess in the first place. Mr. Sanford...you make me sick. You're a disgrace to America and to the people of SC.

    June 9, 2009 at 4:11 am |
  6. Jay

    Since Sanford is giving example of a family let us look at it this way...what do you do when your some of your family members are going to suffer the worst in their life (in this case the 5000+ teachers getting layed off and 5000 SC families getting hurt)......I would go out to explore all the finances that I can avail and then invest that money into those family members in a way which will be productive in future...in this case the stimulus money is going to continue education for many and will reap rich returns for them which in turn will reap rich results for the state...fiscally responsible does not mean socially irresponsible...you nees social factors and financial factor to be inclusive not exclusive

    June 9, 2009 at 2:53 am |
  7. k guess

    so there are only 345 legal American citizens?

    June 9, 2009 at 1:26 am |
  8. Brice

    Everyone is for better education, free healthcare, taking better care of our elderly. Nobody is looking at the all the consequences. As long as we keep passing the debt to the next generation, America is going to end up owned by foreign corporations, not by the people.

    I understand S. Carolina paid her taxes, and deserves her portion. Are you ready for the consequences when it comes due in a couple years? What then, sell State bonds to China?

    June 8, 2009 at 11:16 pm |
  9. sylhines

    Sanford has given various answers to the education question during the last four months. He wanted to reform the education system and the money would preclude such reforms. Now he has been in office some 8 years, why the reform so late in his tenure. He opposed the UC money and almost let the fund run dry before the legislature forced him to apply for federal funds as all states were doing. He then wanted to fire the entire UC Board which the legislature blocked and he railed for an audit.

    I have not understood the strings ploy, which was an early rallying point for southern governors. There are no strings worthy of refusing the funds in these dire times. Stanford is and was posturing like the other reactionary governors, but they all got caught in the spotlight and he is simply reacting like a deer in a set of headlights.

    Stanford refused the education funds because they were intended for publlic education(minority students) not private/religious schools who are his supporters which he is a product of. Every smart southern politican has attempted to avoid federal funding for equality of opportunity, a dixiecrat position enacted after the Brown vs Board supreme court decision, overturning separate but equal educational policies in the south. Those reactionaries, including Regan has attacked the Dept. of Education time and time again. Regan played to that theme buy attempting to dismantle the Dept. in his first term.

    Sadly, South Carolina is last in about all measurable achievement levels of education, low birth weight, SAT scores, decent housing etc.
    There is a new, more educated population in South Carolina today and that is what his rambling attempt to paint the unemployed population as new arrivals from the north east. It is the retirees, highly educated from new England (notice he called them rust belt) that will help turn that state around. North Carolina, Georgia and Tenn. has run away from their neighbor in terms of growth and business. Good bye Mark, time for a new day and component leadership.

    June 8, 2009 at 11:02 pm |
  10. CBH

    I have one question. What is the answer to all our money problems. What should the President do? Tax cuts and less government spending isn't the answer, so what do we do? Someone tell me.

    June 8, 2009 at 9:21 pm |
  11. Bob

    This guy Sanford is a shining example of why the conservatives will again get trounced AGAIN in 2010......He simply doesn't get it: voters are demanding that the federal and state governments get involved by using public funds for public works programs and education....The voter also understands that the proposals of right wing advocates like Sanford will only grow the poverty levels steeper, with less of a safety net for the unemployed...So what's Sanford's "plan"? Good question........I guess "he'll get back with 'ya on that".......

    June 8, 2009 at 8:56 pm |
  12. TS

    I think that the public outlash from the left side of the political spectrum is far too focused on "He's gonna run!" Why is it whenever a state leader takes a position against the stimulus they are labeled as front runners for 2012? The only people who care about the 2012 election in 2009 are those who have nothing else to use as an argument.

    The stimulus plan has more pork than a pig farm and all these statesmen are doing is taking the precautions the Congress should have. Had this ridiculous set of bills gone through the normally cautious process that we have scene in the past perhaps it would not be necessary for those on the state level to reject parts of it.

    June 8, 2009 at 8:23 pm |
  13. 9corona

    Much like the men and women who passed the stimulus bill, many of the blogger's here have not read the bill. By taking the money the federal government is forcing states to take, will increase state run programs; but the federal government is only paying/allocating money for 24 months. Within the next 24 months your property, school, sales and (where possible) state taxes will go up to continue the funds required under the stimulas package. Forcing states to take federal money to expand state runned programs is unconstitutional.

    June 8, 2009 at 8:00 pm |
  14. Bill

    Debt is like a big hole you get yourself into. You cannot climb out of that hole with a shovel, you only dig yourself in deeper. Refusing to increase your debt, is the first step in getting a ladder. That is how you get out of a hole.

    June 8, 2009 at 6:26 pm |
  15. No Incumbents 2010

    Sanford is playing politics by throwing his state's economy under the bus so he can pander to the far right in advance of the 2012 Presidential primary. There is no other reason he would make the unfounded legal claim in a frivilous lawsuit that one state can dictate to the federal government how the federal government can spend money. Maybe he should run for the Senate so he could filibuster all the spending he doesn't want. Sanford in in charge of his state can only has himself to blame for his state's high indebtedness.

    June 8, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  16. DERRICK DOUGLAS SR

    YEAH GOV U HAVE BEEN IN OFFICE FOR THE LAST 8 YRS ALMOST AND I HAVE NOT SEEN U BALANCE ANY BUDGETS OR SHOW ANY ACCOUNTABILITY FOR AS MONEY BEING SPENT ON PROGRAMS 4 OUR STATE OPEN THE BOOKS AND SHOW WERE UR SO CALLED
    SPENDING HAS HELPED THE STATE OVER THE LAST 8 YRS U TOOK OVER FOR HODGES AND HAVE NOT DONE ANYTHING BUT TALK JUST LIKE THAT JERK LIMBAUGH WHO HAS ALL THE ANSWERS BEHIND A MIC !!! PUT WON'T MAN UP ANYWHERE ELSE
    PLZZZZZZZZZ GIVE US A BREAK GLAD U DON'T GET A 3RD TERM TO SCREW US MORE

    June 8, 2009 at 6:22 pm |
  17. AJZipperer

    Mark Sanford graduated from Beaufort Academy, a private prep school for the privileged, currently costing about $12,000 per year. Sanford does not care a fig about what happens to public schools or public school children. That's why he refused the federal stimulus money for education. What do wealthy, privileged people like Sanford know about the struggles of the working poor and the middle class? Like Marie Antoinette, he knows nothing and suggests ridiculous alternatives. The majority of South Carolina voters elected Sanford because he pushed their racists buttons. Blinded by prejudice, they could not anticipate what a disater he would be for South Carolina. When South Carolians stop voting their racial prejudices and start voting Christian concern for everyone, they will begin to have competent, level-headed political leaders who will enable the state to progress in education and the standard of living.

    June 8, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  18. Doug, North Caorlina

    Ya lets let South Carolina set the standards for the country they have done so well with education, health care, civil rights, give me a break.

    June 8, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  19. cransom

    Here is the plan...
    Take back all stimulus money, bailouts, bring home the boys....
    Spend $345 million dollars and give $1mil to ever legal American citizen.
    Strings...
    Must pay off mortgage or buy new home-Housing solved.
    Must pay off all credit of any kind-Banking solved.
    Must buy 1 new car-Dealers happy.
    Invest in childrens' education or invest in business opportunity-Banks happy again.
    Spend $10,000 on family vacation
    Difference returned to Federal gov't.-Incetive to invest all of it and return nothing. Total Cost-3.45 million not trillions!!!!!

    June 8, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  20. Geoff, Sherrills Ford NC

    Anybody notice that Casey Edwards, who is so concerned about her South Carolina state education system is planning to go on to Duke, a North Carolina private college? Somebody convince me that there are no teacher layoffs in states that spent the stimulus money on education? While teachers are on vacation for the next three months how about a stimulus dollar spent on a project that helps create a private sector job. In the end, money spent to create government jobs just increases the size of government. I know how about a tax break to purchase a newer more fuel efficient car from a troubled auto manufacture... oops too late they work for the government now too.

    June 8, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  21. Disbeliever

    I support the Governor in his attempts to minimize our state's debt. I laugh at all those who can't understand the need to be fiscally responsible. The education crisis is not new. What was the plan for education in the state back in December before the stimulus money became available? How was the Department of Education going to avoid layoffs then? Are we not just delaying the problem 24 months till the Federal money dries up? The Department of Education needs to solve their problem without the need for Federal stimulus otherwise we will be facing layoffs and program cuts again in 2011. Lets look at the real problem in the Department of Education and avoid all the smoke and mirrors hiding the truth.

    June 8, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  22. Jim

    Sanford's claim that accepting the stimulus money would leave South Carolina around a billion dollars in the hole 24 months from now is false. That said, I'm not opposed to a tax increase–we need to roll back the irresponsible tax cuts enacted by George Bush and his regressive Republican cohorts.

    June 8, 2009 at 3:54 pm |
  23. Mike, FL

    SC has the third highest pvoerty rate in the nation and not to mention one of the worst public education systems! Out of all the states who probably can't afford not to take the stimulus money is SC!

    June 8, 2009 at 3:53 pm |
  24. Informed Carolinian

    If the people in this state would finally get it through their thick skulls that the LEGISLATURE writes the budget and NOT the governor, you would realize that it's the LEGISLATURE who set up this situation to lay off teachers and keep the messed up system the way it is – not Mark. Our legislature is full of spite and fearmongering. I support what he was trying to do 100% and I (still proudly) voted for Obama.

    June 8, 2009 at 3:53 pm |
  25. Jeff

    First theBanks and the car companies, Now they want to take over the states. State Rights, no such thing .

    June 8, 2009 at 3:51 pm |
  26. Jason

    I don't spend a lot of time trying to understand politicians but I have to ask a few questions:

    1. Hasn't the stimulus money already been approved and won't it be spent somewhere?

    2. Isn't this federal debt that will be paid back with federal taxes?

    3. South Carolinians will be paying back their share of this debt whether they accept their share of the funds or not, correct?

    This is like winning the lottery and not going down to the lottery office to claim it. Someone please help me understand.

    June 8, 2009 at 3:49 pm |
  27. John, from SC

    To Dave:

    Yes, Dave, we should keep funding these programs which in your words, "got us into this mess". However, I do not think that Education and Public Safety got us into this mess. Partisan politics and the greed of the wealthy got us into this mess, and Sanford openly and vigorously accepted the money to go into politics and to the wealthy. Simple Reaganomics at work: Give all the rich all the money and kick the poor for their inability to eat and need to beg.

    June 8, 2009 at 3:45 pm |
  28. Bosco, SC

    I think a lot of you are missing what the argument was from people who were angry about him turning down the money. It isn't only that we desperately need money – it's that it is being paid for regardless of whether we accept it or not. THAT is the issue – NOT whether you agree with the stimulus as a whole or not. If SC turns the money down, it does nothing to save anybody any money – it will just be reallocated.

    I personally do not agree with the stimulus but that doesn't mean I agree with Sanford. It is a dumb move by him and not in the best interests of the state. It was political posturing.

    Again – this is not about whether you agree with the stimulus or not. That is an entirely different argument.

    June 8, 2009 at 3:42 pm |
  29. Theresa

    I like this man's way of thinking. He makes a lot of sense. This country needs to get back to common sense before Obama runs it down into a big sinkhole of debt.

    June 8, 2009 at 3:40 pm |
  30. John, from SC

    Thank you Governor.
    Thank you for taking all the money slotted for Government finances, and balking at the money for education and safety.
    Thank you for holding our children and safety ransom with this money.
    Thank you for not choosing to hold yourself ransom, or your government ransom instead.
    Thank you for being smarter than us, regular citizens of South Carolina.

    Sincerely,

    June 8, 2009 at 3:39 pm |
  31. Bayou Billy

    @ Allan Simmons

    Since when has 'joining a Tea Party Movement' been equivocal to common sense? Get your head out of the sand, buddy.

    Ever hear the phrase "You've got to spend money to make money"?

    June 8, 2009 at 3:27 pm |
  32. ItsReallyMe

    If only everyone was this concern when Bush was President...maybe we wouldn’t be having this conversation. Instead Republicans brush it to the side and made excuses. Another question why is there a striking resemblance between slave states and red states? And why is there a striking resemblance between SAT scores and red states. I’m no genius but you do the math. Why are you a Republican or a Democrat? Is it because your pappi was a Republican? Is it because you make less thatn 150K a year and you are still a Republican. South is so lost...we have teachers who support the govenor. Can you please explain. I would rather have a job to pay higher taxes then not to have one at all. Hey but thats just my opinion. Im no scholar.

    June 8, 2009 at 3:24 pm |
  33. Bernice

    Any person who comes to SC can see first-hand the impact that unemployment has had and why this stimulus money is so very important. He can play with words all he likes, but I think Gov. Sanford has no clue what it is like to be without the basic necessities and what is it like to worry where your next meal was coming from because your unemployment benefits have run out or how you are going to pay for that doctor's visit when you have no job and no health benefits. Go check out counties in SC like Chester and Allendale, who have high unemployment rates, and so many people who would love a job and are eager for a chance to get back in the workforce.

    June 8, 2009 at 3:22 pm |
  34. Amazed

    I love the arguements for the stimulus! The one where you claim we won't be in a mountain of debt in two years because our economy will grow out of it. Sounds like risk taking and speculation. Aren't those two things the very "evils" that got us into our current situation? So if your speculation that is not founded in any logic does not pan out then you must admit the stimulus has put us an even more dire situation as a country.

    Federal and local governments have spent way to much for years, and now President Obama has put years of out of control spending on steroids. Wake up, get back to fundamental sound financial, educational, and social policies.

    June 8, 2009 at 3:21 pm |
  35. Bill, Bloominton IL

    Arvind: you should run for office. Your arguement was very Washington like. Lets defy logic and throw the money at this problem anyway. if we have the same result in two years, so what? You could have spent money on GM quicker than the politicians did and we still have the same result, only 6 month later. And we are still out the money.

    June 8, 2009 at 3:13 pm |
  36. fred astaire

    The more people that "nurse themselves" on either the Fed or State governments, the more democratic votes in 2012.
    Welfare, continous welfare is slavery all over again.
    When inflation hits, the poor will experience a "tax" tenfold orver the middle class. How sad we cannot look past today.

    June 8, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  37. Frank, Las Vegas

    His state has one of the lowest education scores in the nation and he wants to keep it that way. After all if he actually educates them, he and the GOP would never win another election. Keep your people uneducated and they will believe anything you say.

    June 8, 2009 at 2:39 pm |
  38. Jerry

    We elect people to MANAGE responsibly. Any politician can piss away money! Enough of this "stimulus" BS. It isn't working.

    June 8, 2009 at 2:37 pm |
  39. Seth

    Lets keep printing more money,and have more bailouts and have the gov't control everything.WOW,I hope your all happy America,is becoming a THIRD WORLD NATION.

    June 8, 2009 at 2:27 pm |
  40. Joe

    What most people fail to realize and so far have failed to really touch on are the "strings" attached to the stimulus money.

    There are strings that require funding levels be met on things such as higher education. Further there are strings about extending unemployment benefits.

    The real question is what do you do with these strings when the federal money expires (which by the way only lasts for two years) and the states are forced to pay for all these extras simply on their own budgets?

    If the states can't pay for their existing/current programs and budgets without federal assistance what makes anyone think they can pay for their budget + strings? Also, is the fact that the states recover at an approximate rate of 12 to 18 months slower than the national economy.

    Additionally, the last testimony snippet i was able to catch reported that only roughly 5% of the stimulus has been spent and that the job "savings" touted by the administration will be difficult or impossible to verify.

    June 8, 2009 at 2:25 pm |
  41. Jay

    Chris D: Maybe it is you who needs to acquire more information. "Right to work" stipulates that unions cannot bar a prospective employee from employment if he or she chooses not to join said union.

    June 8, 2009 at 2:23 pm |
  42. Gary

    Dave you are right on the money with your Basic math question. I do not live in SC, therefore I cannot comment on the Governor there. From what I read in this article, I agree with him. I feel sorry for the teachers that would have been affected in a RIF, but the state has to cut costs somehow. If more states and the Federal government would run as a company instead as a political machine they would be in much better financial standing.

    June 8, 2009 at 2:22 pm |
  43. Allan Simmons

    Hey folks this country is out of money!!!!
    We can't tax and spend our way out of this one.
    I was one of 20,000 from ATT whom were laid off in February even
    though ATT made 17 Billion profit last year.

    I will however start up a business in 2009 and create 60 plus job's if the state of CA and Fed's can get out of my way.

    China has bought 580 Billion of US debt when will this chicken come home to roose.
    Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security are ponzi schemes...

    This country needs fiscal restraint and a return to common sense.
    Time to join the tea party movement and call for end to reckless spending and work together as American's to fix this before it is too late....

    June 8, 2009 at 2:09 pm |
  44. Dave

    So, we should keep funding the programs that helped to get us in this mess?

    Gov. Sanford is right on here, just too many ignorant Americans who rely on liberal CNN reporting here....Just look at the posts on this site.

    I have a BASIC math question for you...What do you get when you spend more than you make? DEBT! How do you pay for it? Higher taxes. What does higher taxes mean? Less earnings for individuals and less hiring for businesses...Unfortunately, the liberal left idiots don't understand this...Even many of the ignorant Right doesn't understand it either.

    Of course, my comments will probably be blocked...

    June 8, 2009 at 1:02 pm |
  45. Beeker25

    Sanford is a smooth talkin' politician and just posturing to run in 2012 which he will have to compete with others in the primary. His comment on the employement statistic just shows me that he doesn't know what he's talking about because numbers don't lie and he's saving money in the wrong time rather in the good times. It reminds me of what the GOP tried to do in the 1930's and it created a mess which Roosevelt had to fix. You are seeing the same parallel.
    So I say GET LOST MARKIE MARK!

    June 8, 2009 at 12:57 pm |
  46. Chris D.

    anthony June 8th, 2009 11:33 am ET

    We’ve been hiring teachers and lower class sizes in America for twenty years. What do we have to show for it? A linear increase in union dues and commensurate union control over the political process. Student learning gains? None, outside of districts without strong charter school pressure. And what about those poor “teachers” and “students” who filed these lawsuits to force Sanford’s hand? Union stooges, or union financed stooges, there is no doubt about that.
    ---------------------------------
    Ah Anthony, ye who have little info....South Carolina is a "right to work state"......Therefore no unions can be organized.

    June 8, 2009 at 11:53 am |
  47. Chris D.

    The stim money for education is to keep teachers, but isn't also to build, and renovate/rebuild schools that have long needed it? Which would mean hiring construction, painters, electricians, ....workers? isn't that stimulus? I won't knock Sanford's frugalnes, but not at the expence of those in his state who are going through this recession....it's easy for a man who's employed and lives well to talk a certain way.......Anyway conservative values of cut, and save will come in handy down the road.....Right now, in crisis, money had to be spent.....It cost, to stay the boss.

    June 8, 2009 at 11:50 am |
  48. ryan

    Gov. Sanford is very sincere in his conservative movement about taking any money for SC. He has no idea what it is like to be in need of any assistance...He was born into wealth, remains wealthy, & to my knowledge has never held a real job....only elected to office...other than perhaps an atty and we know they don't really work...

    June 8, 2009 at 11:50 am |
  49. anthony

    We've been hiring teachers and lower class sizes in America for twenty years. What do we have to show for it? A linear increase in union dues and commensurate union control over the political process. Student learning gains? None, outside of districts without strong charter school pressure. And what about those poor "teachers" and "students" who filed these lawsuits to force Sanford's hand? Union stooges, or union financed stooges, there is no doubt about that.

    June 8, 2009 at 11:33 am |
  50. J

    Arvind, you obviously missed the point, plus you have no numbers to back up your "crock" comment, so please, start running on facts, not emotion. You are upset because someone is standing up against Obama for his "credit card socialism" mentality. You should rethink your position an what is fiscally responsible rather than ad hominem attacks because Sanford is a Republican. Stick to the facts.

    June 8, 2009 at 11:25 am |
  51. Reggie SC the RED State

    this guy should eb IMPEACHED. You're going to lay off 5,000 teachers. Our unemployment will go up even more. State agencies are already taking cuts. This guy is so stuck on running that his blindnes is going to ruin it for the other republicans that will be running in 2010. I see why the republican party is getting hit hard...no one uses any common sense!!!

    I wish we could get someone with a tap/drop of common sense to make decisions for our state....but who am I kidding??? We are still a RED STATE!!!

    June 8, 2009 at 11:10 am |
  52. Arvind Agrawal

    Kiran, Sanford has been selling this snake oil for a while. U asked if he was just posturing to win the GOP primary? He dodged it..
    The stim money is to avoid teacher layoffs etc. He says it will leave the state in debt after 2 yesrs. What crock...
    If the economy improves he won't have any problem, if not, stim will prevent layoffs for 2 yrs. He can lay them off at that time..the laid off people will do anything if they were spared for 2 years. Looks like the Gov don't feel this pain.
    He then wants to use the money to set it aside...or balance his budget. He compares the stim money to a Lottery. Not only a flake..
    but a smooth talking liar bent upon dumping on Obama any which way. If he is so principled, why does'nt he return the whole 2.4B....or give to Arnold S. who will gladly take it.
    If he fears a revolt in the state or doesn't like the court verdict he should resign. He won't do it for he is a double talking pol.

    June 8, 2009 at 10:47 am |