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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

O Arizona: Senator Kyl, Tear Down That Stimulus Money Wall

The Obama administration is firing back at Sen. Jon Kyl for calling for an end to economic stimulus spending, and it's aiming where it hurts the most -- at home in Arizona.

The White House on Tuesday released letters from four cabinet secretaries to Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, a Republican, citing Kyl's comments and outlining transportation, housing, Indian education and other projects in his home state they said would be eliminated if the senator has his way.

Kyl, the No. 2 Senate GOP leader, has said the stimulus spending hasn't succeeded in boosting the economy and that it's adding to the deficit. He's suggested on his Senate Web site and in interviews that spending not already allocated be halted.

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, one of two Republicans in Obama's cabinet, made no attempt to conceal his needling.

Kyl "publicly questioned whether the stimulus is working and stated that he wants to cancel projects that aren't presently under way," LaHood wrote Brewer. "If you prefer to forfeit the money we are making available to your state, as Senator Kyl suggests, please let me know."

Responding to the letters, Kyl charged in a statement that the White House was resorting "to coordinated political attacks with the Democratic National Committee and the politicization of departments of government by using cabinet secretaries to issue thinly veiled threats to the governor and the people of Arizona." He also urged the president to "consider whether the unallocated stimulus money could be put to better use."

LaHood noted in his letter that at least $520.9 million of the $48 billion for transportation projects under the economic recovery act are intended for Arizona projects, including transit projects in Phoenix.

link: White House Turns Up Heat On Kyl - Phoenix News Story - KPHO Phoenix


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