Published October 24, 2008
Key to recovery: the road or the dollar?
U.S. Rep. Brian Baird and his Republican challenger have some interestingly different views on economic recovery. They clashed on the $700 billion bailout/rescue package bill, and now butt heads on the possibility of a second stimulus package.First, Baird's take, issued after he sat in on a meeting with Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke:
Last time we practically dropped money from helicopters. All across Southwest Washington, there are infrastructure projects that have already been approved they just need the funding to be allocated to them. Roads need to be fixed. Schools need to be repaired. We have waste water treatment plants that either need to be updated, or built from scratch. Yet, due to this economic crisis, thousands of people in Southwest Washington are currently out of work. It seems to me the quickest way to solve two problems at once would to get these people back to work rebuilding America.I asked Delavar about this yesterday in writing a profile of the larger Baird v. Delavar race. "I think it's misguided. Part of the equation I agree with him on, I agree that these projects re ready to go and we should get them funded," Delavar said. "What we donít agree on is whether that is going to be the solution on the economy, and I strongly disagree, no it isn't."More spending without higher taxes should come with cuts in spending, he added, saying "the best place to cut that spending in our military involvement oversees."Then there was a loud rumbling noise."Harleys, you got to love 'em," Delavar said, before explaining that he doesnít think the massive construction projects of the 1930s ended the Great Depression. "We already have enough government jobs," he said. "The solution is undoing the decades of damage to the dollar. Weíre on the edge of it being denied as the world's reserve currency. A new bridge isnít going to fix that."