Sunday, December 13, 2009

Will Crist Back New GOP Statement on Stimulus, Shun Florida Jobs It Created and Saved?

From FDP:

New criticisms of the federal stimulus program by Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele leave Gov. Charlie Crist, to answer if he agrees with Steele's statements and how he reconciles them with his own varying positions on the stimulus.

"Does Charlie Crist agree with statements by the leader of his Party that the stimulus is 'an indisputable failure' or does he think the 30,000 jobs its kept in Florida have helped our state in the midst of an economic catastrophe?" Florida Democratic Party spokesman Eric Jotkoff asked. "Charlie Crist changes positions on the stimulus as often as most people change socks. Does Crist stand with his national Party bosses or with the working people of Florida? Was he threatened with political retribution for his stimulus endorsement?"

Steele referred to "the indisputable failure of" the federal stimulus program, calling it "reckless" in an opinion editorial, published Monday, in Politico. Yet, the federal stimulus has so far saved or created 29,322 jobs in Florida, according to federal reports. [Politico, Op-Ed by Michael Steele, 12/7/09;, 12/7/09,]

Asked in February why he'd "broken with some in [his] own party to back this stimulus," Crist affirmed his endorsement of the stimulus saying, "Because Florida needs it frankly." But earlier this month, when asked about his support of the stimulus, Crist said, "I didn't endorse it." [The Weekly Standard, Online Blog, 11/5/09,]

Steele had previously warned of RNC retribution for GOP candidates who supported President Obama's stimulus plan saying, "We'll come after you." [ABC News, The Note, 11/5/09]

Questions loom:

Does Gov. Crist back RNC Chairman Michael Steele's latest statements on the stimulus, and if so, does he consider the 29,322 Florida jobs it saved or created each "indisputable failures"?

Was Gov. Crist given advance warning of Steele's op-ed, and did Steele or other Republican Party leaders intimating potential retribution for his previous support of the stimulus ever approach Crist or his staff?

If Gov. Crist continues to retract his previous endorsement of the stimulus program, why does he believe Florida would be better served without those 30,000 jobs?

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