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Dems attack Perry over stimulus funds

Good to see.

Texas Democratic lawmakers Thursday defended President Barack Obama’s stimulus package against criticism from Republican leaders, saying Texas is making economic progress with the help of recovery funds.

Texas state Sen. Leticia Van de Putte, D-San Antonio, said that without the $16.5 billion in funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, steep cuts would have been made to the state’s budget.

“We would have been in severe trouble if we had not had it,” Van de Putte told reporters in a Democratic National Committee-sponsored conference call.

Van de Putte said the stimulus money has led to the creation of about 69,000 transportation jobs, an $800 pay raise for public school teachers and accounts for $1.7 billion in other education funds.

State Rep. Jim Dunnam, D-Waco, said the state did not have to reduce Medicaid spending as it did in 2003 when the Legislature cut the program.

More of this, please. It cannot be said often or loudly enough that we needed $12 billion in stimulus dollars to balance the state budget. Rick Perry can preen all he wants about how he didn’t want all those nasty federal funds, but the truth is he grabbed them with both hands because we needed every penny and then some. As for the unemployment funds that he did manage to reject, let’s always remember that everything Rick Perry has done on unemployment funds has cost us all more money. He’s wrong, he’s vulnerable on these points, and everybody needs to know it. Thanks to EoW for the catch.

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