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TNDP Chair Calls Out Republican Hypocrisy On Recovery Act

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Tennessee Democratic Party Chairman Chip Forrester wants to know how many members of Tennessee’s Republican congressional delegation have requested Recovery Act funding or written letters of support for Recovery Act projects in Tennessee.

U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander and U.S. Rep. Zach Wamp voted against the stimulus package last year and have made critical statements about the measure. Alexander, however, requested Recovery Act funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Wamp praised a $71.2 million Oak Ridge National Laboratory Recovery Act project for creating jobs.

“If that isn’t the definition of hypocrite, I don’t know what is,” Forrester said. “The Recovery Act created or saved about 2 million jobs in the U.S. and kept this economy from falling off a cliff. But Republicans rail against the Recovery Act while playing partisan politics in Washington.

“They come back home, though, and smile into the cameras while taking credit for stimulus dollars that fund vital infrastructure projects and create much-needed jobs. Mr. Alexander and Mr. Wamp have been called out by the media on this hypocrisy.

“I would like to know if the other Republicans representing this state in Congress have been as hypocritical about the Recovery Act. Or have they decided to play games with the economic security of the people they are supposed to be representing by turning down job-creating projects.”

To date, nearly $6 billion in stimulus money has been committed to Tennessee, creating or retaining more than 10,000 jobs across the state and providing much-needed infrastructure improvements. The Tennessee Department of Transportation, in fact, recently obligated all of the $572 million in Recovery Act funds made available to it for highway infrastructure projects.

U.S. Reps. Marsha Blackburn, Phil Roe and John Duncan also voted against the Recovery Act, as did U.S. Sen. Bob Corker.