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Sean Duffy stands by criticism of stimulus

I linked earlier to an October 2009 piece in which I'd interviewed Sean Duffy, the GOP candidate in Wisconsin who's getting a lot more attention now that Rep. David Obey (D-Wis.) has announced his retirement. In the interview, Duffy was dismissive of the economic stimulus package that, as chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, Obey had a huge role in crafting. Since then, we've had two quarters of GDP growth and a month of positive job numbers. So had Duffy changed his mind?

"Not at all," said Duffy. "We have economic cycles. At one point we were going to come out of this. If you think back to February 2009, David Obey and the other folks were saying we were in an emergency. Congress had, if I remember correctly, 24 hours to review the bill. It was urgent for them to pass it. They led us to believe there would be an instant uptick in the economy. And frankly, that didn't happen. We saw a continual slide. Just because an economy eventually turns around, to say that is because of the stimulus package is misguided. We were told it would keep unemployment at 8 percent -- in this district it's at 12 percent. And we're looking at $13 trillion in debt. There will be more economic consequences from that debt than any positive consequences from the stimulus package."

By David Weigel  |  May 5, 2010; 5:46 PM ET
Categories:  2010 Election  
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