No Thanks But Thanks?
Not to belabor this Sarah Palin point, but Ben Smith notices that she has not closed the door on taking stimulus money just yet.
Palin supporters and her budget director, Karen Rehfeld, said the bluster over the governor's stance on the stimulus money is somewhat misplaced.
In fact, the administration hasn't yet rejected a single dollar of the stimulus funding, Rehfeld said in an interview from Juneau on Saturday.
She sent an e-mail Friday to all legislators promising that state agencies "will continue to complete the necessary paperwork and applications and meet the specific deadlines" to collect all the stimulus money pending a public debate on whether to keep it.
The Lt. Governor concurs.
Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell showed up to deliver Palin’s message – that she’s not necessarily “rejecting” the money, but wants a public debate on how it’s spent and whether it would cost the state in the long run.
Among the questions: Is the governor’s team trying to have it both ways – saying "no" to the money while leaving the door open to spending it?
I would say the answer is "of course she's trying to have it both ways." There's actually a fair bit of public outcry in Alaska (see here) over rejecting the money, and so we see the usual backpedaling. But whether she takes the money or not, Palin can get on the stump in Iowa and New Hampshire and claim that she said "Thanks but no thanks" to President Obama's socialist booty. It wasn't true the last time, either, and that never bothered Republicans.
...meanwhile, Mark Sanford explains his rejection of the stimulus money with neo-Hooverist tripe. He thinks too much debt created the economic meltdown. 'Nuff said.