Richmond, VA - In a second ad released today, George Allen’s allies at Crossroads GPS are defending him yet again with charges that distort the facts. Crossroads and the Allen campaign continue to claim Tim Kaine supports looming defense cuts, a claim the Associated Press has already labeled false. Earlier this month, the Associated Press reported a similar George Allen ad “distorts” Kaine’s position and “fosters a false impression that his Democratic opponent, Tim Kaine, supports potential deep military spending cuts.” After the GOP attempted to make similar claims against Tim Kaine, the Washington Times noted the hypocrisy since numerous Republicans supported the compromise in question, writing that the GOP attack on Tim Kaine “ricochets." In fact, Tim Kaine is the only candidate in this Senate race to lay out a plan to avoid massive defense cuts.
“Despite numerous fact checks and all evidence to the contrary, Crossroads continues to peddle George Allen’s lies about Tim Kaine and defense cuts,” said Kaine for Virginia Communications Director Brandi Hoffine. “Tim Kaine believes these sequestration cuts are the wrong cuts and Congress must reach a bipartisan deal to avoid them. He and other leaders, including Bob McDonnell, Paul Ryan, Eric Cantor, John Boehner, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, all supported last summer’s deal to raise the debt ceiling because it was the only viable path to avoid the nation’s first default. George Allen, on the other hand, wanted to use the debt ceiling crisis as “leverage” to force even deeper cuts that would have hurt Virginia. And this from someone who helped create the problem by adding more than $3 trillion to the national debt and voting four times to raise the debt ceiling during his previous budget-busting Senate term. At this point it’s clear that George Allen has no plan to reduce the debt he helped create and is more interested in playing politics with Virginia jobs.”
Throughout this campaign, Crossroads GPS’ Virginia ads have been criticized by newspapers, editorial boards, and independent fact-checkers across the state, and called "erroneous," and filled with "demonstrable falsehoods and distortions."
Crossroads has now tried a half-dozen times to boost George Allen’s campaign. Tim Kaine has twice offered George Allen opportunities to reach an agreement limiting the influence of these outside groups on this Senate race and George Allen twice declined, opting instead to bolster his re-election campaign with false, negative advertising.
Quick Facts You Should Know
AP: “Allen Airs Campaign Ad On Possible Defense Cuts That Distorts Kaine’s Position." [Associated Press, 7/24/12]
AP: “Kaine Was Clear” That His Support Of Debt Limit Deal Did Not Extend To Support For Sequestration. [Associated Press, 7/24/12]
During George Allen’s previous term in the Senate he voted four times to raise the debt ceiling without corresponding cuts and for more than $3 trillion in debt. [Politifact Virginia, 4/12/11]
At the time the compromise was reached, Kaine called the bipartisan compromise “far from perfect”… [Associated Press, 7/24/12]
Allen “has never offered a coherent alternative…Allen bellyached that the budget cuts should have been deeper, a posture he's chosen to ignore now… [Roanoke Times, 07/27/12]
“Like Kaine, Republican House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Gov. Bob McDonnell also backed the August compromise that kept the government from defaulting on its debts for the first time and defused a global financial meltdown. Allen opposed the compromise, saying the cuts would not have been deep enough.” [Associated Press, 7/24/12]
RHETORIC: Tim Kaine: Plan To Cut Defense Spending “The Right Thing” –Richmond Times-Dispatch, 7/21/12
REALITY: Kaine has always opposed defense sequestration cuts.
KAINE HAS ALWAYS OPPOSED DEFENSE SEQUESTRATION CUTS
Kaine Actually Said That Supporting The Debt Deal “Was The Right Thing To Do,” Not Cutting Defense Spending. The Richmond Times-Dispatch wrote, “For his part, Allen spent considerable time attacking Kaine for his support of last year’s debt reduction deal . . . . ‘The deal was the right thing to do,’ Kaine said, noting that Republicans also supported the deal, including Gov. Bob McDonnell and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-7th.” [Richmond Times-Dispatch, 7/21/12]
AP: “Allen Airs Campaign Ad On Possible Defense Cuts That Distorts Kaine’s Position.” In an article headlined, “Allen Airs Campaign Ad On Possible Defense Cuts That Distorts Kaine’s Position,” The Associated Press reported, “At the time the compromise was reached, Kaine called it ‘far from perfect’ but said it temporarily preserved ‘economic stability by raising the debt ceiling and enacts important spending cuts that will help preserve our nation’s and Virginia’s credit rating. This is the beginning of a much longer process as we work to rebuild our economy.’” [Associated Press, 7/24/12]
AP: “Kaine Was Clear” That His Support Of Debt Limit Deal Did Not Extend To Support For Sequestration. In an article headlined, “Allen Airs Campaign Ad On Possible Defense Cuts That Distorts Kaine’s Position,” The Associated Press reported, “Republicans who supported and helped broker the deal last summer have since sought to turn the issue against President Barack Obama, claiming he is willing to decimate the nation’s military strength with the automatic spending reductions. In the weekend debate, Allen tried to graft the national tactic into his neck-and-neck Senate race against Kaine, claiming that Virginia — home to the Pentagon and the world’s largest U.S. Navy base in Norfolk — could lose more than 200,000 defense-related jobs. ‘George, the deal was the right thing to do — as Eric Cantor said, as Gov. Bob McDonnell said, as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce said,’ Kaine replied when Allen made the charge during the debate. But Kaine was clear in his reply that his endorsement of last August’s stopgap did not extend to approving of the super committee’s failure or of the continued partisan gridlock between House Republicans and Senate Democrats that jeopardizes a deal by year’s end. ‘This is a time when we really have to elevate what we do because the challenges are significant,’ Kaine said in his response. ‘We need people who will come together and try to find a deal and I believe Congress can still find a deal to avoid the need for cuts that are going to jeopardize our nation’s defense.’” [Associated Press, 7/24/12]
After The Supercommittee’s Failure, Kaine Urged Congress To Find “A Meaningful Solution That Will Avoid Harmful Cuts To Defense.” After the failure of the Supercommittee, Governor Kaine issued the following statement: “Congress has, yet again, let Americans down by demonstrating that they will not work together to find common ground. . . . I urge Congress, after the flameout of the supercommittee process, to tackle the issue together. There are good models on the table--the Simpson/Bowles proposal and the Gang of Six--that can be the basis of a meaningful solution that will avoid harmful cuts to defense and health care, cuts that have a particularly negative impact on Virginia. There's only one reason for failure--Congress placing their own political self-interest above the national interest.’” [Kaine Press Release, 11/21/11]
“Kaine Said During A Visit To Suffolk On Wednesday That In The Face Of [Defense Funding] Sequestration, ‘Congress Needs To Get Its Act Together.’” [Suffolk News Herald, 4/11/12]
Kaine Said He Opposed “Sequestration, The Mandatory, Across-The-Board Cuts The Military Faces,” Adding That They Are “The Wrong Cuts.” The Suffolk News Herald wrote, “During a stop at the Suffolk News-Herald, Kaine talked about the economy, the military, Hampton Roads’ transportation issues and the general state of political discourse in Virginia and the nation. ‘We need people who know how to work together,’ he said, referring to the stalemates recently in both the U.S. Senate and the Virginia Senate. . . . Kaine said he is concerned about the prospect of sequestration, the mandatory, across-the-board cuts the military faces if Congress cannot come to a budget agreement by January. ‘I think I know how to make cuts the right way,’ he said, adding that sequestration would be ‘the wrong cuts.’ ‘I think it means Congress needs to get their act together.’” [Suffolk News Herald, 4/12/12]
Kaine Said The White House And Congress Should Come Up With An Alternative Plan To Sequestration, Calling Them “The Wrong Cuts.” The Washington Post wrote, “On the subject of sequestration — a roughly $1 trillion cut to federal spending that would begin in January and has many of NVTC’s members concerned — Kaine said that if he were in office now, he would encourage the White House, the Pentagon and members of Congress to propose an alternative plan. ‘It’s much better to have a package that is the right cuts, not the wrong cuts,’ he said.” [Washington Post, 6/1/12]
ABC Roanoke: “Both Republican George Allen And Democrat Tim Kaine Say They Oppose The Massive Government Spending Cuts That Are Set To Kick In On January 1st.” WSET-ABC 13 (Roanoke) reported: “The two former Virginia governors vying for a U.S. Senate seat found some common ground while appearing before a panel of Northern Virginia business leaders today. Both Republican George Allen and Democrat Tim Kaine say they oppose the massive government spending cuts that are set to kick in on January 1st. They both say they favor simplifying the tax code, and also agreed that the University of Virginia's governing board was wrong to fire President Teresa Sullivan without a meeting.” [WSET-ABC 13 (Roanoke), 6/28/12]
Roanoke Times: “Kaine Said He Also Opposes The Defense Cuts And Has Called On Congress To Find A Compromise To Avert Them.” The Roanoke Times wrote, “Kaine said he also opposes the defense cuts and has called on Congress to find a compromise to avert them. Kaine’s campaign points out that Gov. Bob McDonnell and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Henrico County, backed last summer’s debt limit compromise, which ended a protracted partisan impasse that had pushed the federal government to the brink of default. The automatic defense cuts are in play because a congressional ‘supercommittee’ that was created under the Budget Control Act failed to come up with a long-term deficit reduction plan, largely because of a partisan dispute over taxes.” [Roanoke Times, Blue Ridge Caucus, 7/24/12]
“That Debt Limit Plan Was Supported, Too, By Congressional Republicans…Kaine Has Since Called On Congress To Find A New Deal To Reduce The Deficit.” The Washington Examiner wrote, “That debt limit plan was supported, too, by congressional Republicans, including House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., and Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell. Kaine has since called on Congress to find a new deal to reduce the deficit. But Allen promises to make the looming military cuts an issue moving forward, despite arguments by Kaine and fellow Democrats that the attacks as flatly false.” [Washington Examiner, 7/24/12]
Richmond Times-Dispatch: Kaine “Said That Congress Should Work To Find A Deal To Avoid The Deep Cuts To Defense.” The Richmond Times-Dispatch wrote, “Kaine countered by saying it was ‘the right thing to do,’ and noting that many Republicans also backed the plan, which passed congress with broad bipartisan support. Kaine has also said that congress should work to find a deal to avoid the deep cuts to defense.” [Richmond Times-Dispatch, Virginia Politics Blog, 7/24/12]
Real Clear Politics: “Kaine Has Said He Supported The Debt Deal To Avoid Default, But Has Called For Congress To Look For A Solution To The Sequestration Cuts.” Real Clear Politics wrote, “Kaine has said he supported the debt deal to avoid default, but has called for Congress to look for a solution to the sequestration cuts. The Democrat’s campaign blamed Allen for the current budget dilemma.” [Real Clear Politics, 7/25/12]
REALITY: The debt deal received bipartisan support, but George Allen, who had previously voted four times to raise the debt ceiling, would have instead chosen to default.
ALLEN OPPOSED BIPARTISAN DEBT LIMIT COMPROMISE
Washington Post: Allen’s Stance On Debt Deal A “Cynical Flip-Flop;” Allen Opposed While Cantor And McDonnell Supported. In August 2011, the Washington Post criticized Allen in an editorial headlined, “An Early Flip-Flop For Senate Candidate George Allen.” The Post wrote, “As a one-term Republican senator, George Allen voted four times to raise the nation’s debt ceiling — an expansion totaling $3.2 trillion — explaining at one point that, while it was unpleasant, increasing the limit was the responsible thing to do. Today, as a candidate trying to regain the Virginia Senate seat he lost in 2006, Mr. Allen has found the new debt-limiting religion, and he’s peddling it with the fervor of a convert. Condemning the spendthrifts in Washington among whom he used to move so collegially, Mr. Allen now blasts the eleventh-hour deal in Congress to avoid default, saying it provides no ‘long-term solution to our debt crisis.’ A spokesman confirms that Mr. Allen, had he been in the Senate, would have voted Tuesday with the minority to defeat the deal. So much for Mr. Allen’s erstwhile concern for doing the responsible thing. Mr. Allen’s cynical flip-flop can be seen partly in the context of Virginia’s Republican primary for the Senate, in which he faces former state Tea Party head Jamie Radtke, whose bona fides as a debt-ceiling diehard are unassailable. . . . [B]y insisting that a balanced-budget amendment be included in any deal, he sets the bar beyond the realm of political reality. In effect, Mr. Allen’s stance was no less likely to lead to default than Ms. Radtke’s. . . . Even as he condemned the debt deal, his fellow Virginia Republicans, including Gov. Robert F. McDonnell and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, were supporting it. . . . As a candidate for the Senate, his attempts to rebrand himself as an insurgent ring hollow.” [Editorial, Washington Post, 8/3/11]
- Allen Voted to Raise the Debt Limit Four Times. [Vote 148, 6/11/02; Vote 202, 5/23/03; Vote 213, 11/17/04; Vote 54, 3/16/06]
Cantor Negotiated Sequestration Deal And Whipped Freshman Tea Party Representatives To Vote For It. The New York Times reported, “Staff members from the office of Mr. McCarthy and Representative Eric Cantor of Virginia, the Republican majority leader, leaned on the aides of on-the-fence members, fuming, at times, said several staff members, that their bosses would not simply commit and move on. To get the bill to pass, Mr. McCarthy and Mr. Cantor worked the phones, as well as the hallways and the floor of the House.” [New York Times, 8/2/11]
Six Out Of Eight Of Virginia’s Republican Congressman Voted For Sequestration Deal. The Richmond Times Dispatch reported that six of Virginia’s Republican congressman voted for sequestration deal. They include: Robert J. Wittman, R-1st; Scott Rigell, R-2nd; Robert Hurt, R-5th; Robert W. Goodlatte, R-6th; Eric Cantor, R-7th; Frank R. Wolf, R-10th. [Richmond Times Dispatch, 8/2/11]
Gov. Bob McDonnell Offered Support For Debt Ceiling Deal. The Virginian-Pilot reported, “Offering measured praise for the late-breaking federal debt ceiling deal that averted a potential credit default, Gov. Bob McDonnell cautioned Tuesday that it is just a ‘small first step’ to get government spending under control. ‘I am pleased that we have avoided default, which would have threatened Virginia's AAA bond rating and have been catastrophic for our economy, and that this legislation cuts spending and does not raise taxes,’ the governor said in a statement. ‘Throughout this debate I have been clear that Congress must raise the debt limit by August 2 and that any increase in the debt limit should be accompanied by a reduction in federal spending. This legislation, while not perfect, achieves both of those objectives.’" [The Virginian-Pilot, 8/2/11]
Fairfax County Chamber Of Commerce Supported Deal To Raise Debt Ceiling. The Washington Post Virginia Politics blog reported, “Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce President Jim Corcoran, mindful of the billions of dollars that pour into Northern Virginia from the federal government, called on Congress and the White House on Tuesday to cut a deal to raise the debt ceiling or risk damaging Virginia’s economic powerhouse.” [The Washington Post, Virginia Politics Blog, 7/26/11]
U.S. Chamber Of Commerce Supported Debt Ceiling Compromise. In a statement, U.S. Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Thomas J. Donohue said the following: ‘We strongly urge the House and Senate to quickly pass this bipartisan compromise bill that would increase the debt ceiling, avert default, reduce spending, and start the process of getting our fiscal house in order.’” [US Chamber Of Commerce Release, 8/1/11]
The U.S. Chamber Of Commerce On Debt Deal: “This Legislation Is The Right Thing To Do.” In a key vote letter supporting the Budget Control Act of 2011, the US Chamber of Commerce said: "As is the nature of all compromises, this bill is not perfect. It does not fix America’s long-run debt and deficit problems, nor reform the tax code, two things that Congress still must do. But this legislation is the right thing to do, now. This legislation increases the statutory debt ceiling in a manner that does not trigger an increase in taxes, but instead would force Congress to cut spending. The Chamber strongly supports the “Budget Control Act of 2011.” The Chamber will consider including votes on, or in relation to, this issue in our annual How They Voted scorecard." [U.S. Chamber Of Commerce, Key Vote Letter, 8/1/11]
U.S. Chamber Of Commerce: “This Legislation—The Product Of A Bipartisan Agreement Among Congressional Leaders And President Obama—Must Be Approved To Avert Default.” The U.S. Chamber of Commerce said, "The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than three million businesses and organizations of every size, sector, and region, strongly supports the “Budget Control Act of 2011,” which would increase the statutory debt ceiling. This legislation—the product of a bipartisan agreement among Congressional leaders and President Obama—must be approved to avert default, reduce spending, and begin the process of getting America’s fiscal house in order." [U.S. Chamber of Commerce Press Release, 8/1/2011]
Donohue Threatened To “Get Rid Of” Republicans Who Didn't Support Raising Borrowing Limit. Time reported, "At a Chamber of Commerce event on Monday in Atlanta, Chamber President Tom Donohue had a pointed message for Republicans who won’t raise the borrowing limit: ‘We’ll get rid of you.’ Wall Street is fed up with the debt-limit brinkmanship; John Boehner received a chilly reception when he laid out Republican demands in New York City last month. In Atlanta, Donohue offered the House Speaker the kind of backhanded compliment that can leave a mark. ‘He’s growing into his shorts,’ Donohue said. ‘He’s put on his big boy pants.’ [Time, 6/14/11]
Speaker Boehner Called the BCA “A Positive Step Forward.” The office of Speaker of the House John Boehner issued the following press release: “This is a positive step forward that begins to rein in federal spending, but it's only a step.” [Boehner Press Release, 8/1/11]
Sen. McConnell Praised The Budget Control Act As One Of The “Things We Agree On… [That] Will Get Us A Trillion Dollars In Savings Over 10 Years.” The following exchange occurred on NBC’s Meet The Press: DAVID GREGORY: “Isn't this classic? Politicians talking out of both sides of their mouths? We can't have an ultimatum, ‘my way or the highway,’ but we will not talk about tax increases as we go forward to try to bring this budget into balance over time.” SEN MINORITY LEADER MITCH MCCONNELL: “Well, regretfully, it never gets talked about, but there actually are things we agree on. We passed the Budget Control Act last August, this past August. It will get us a trillion dollars in savings over 10 years.” [Meet the Press, 9/18/11]
REALITY: Even Karl Rove supported the debt deal.
Rove Supported The Debt Ceiling Deal, Just As Kaine Did. In an op-ed published in The Wall Street Journal, Karl Rove wrote, “The main danger for Republicans is that while 76 of the 87 House GOP freshmen voted with Mr. Boehner, a substantial minority of GOP activists did not want the debt ceiling raised regardless of what the consequences were for the economy." [Rove Op-Ed, Wall Street Journal, 8/4/11]
REALITY: Allen’s support of Cut, Cap and Balance would likely lead to cuts to defense.
Wall Street Journal Editorial: Inevitable Consequence Of Republicans’ Balanced Budget Amendment Would Likely Be Defense Cuts. In an editorial criticizing the Republicans’ balanced budget amendment proposal, the Wall Street Journal wrote that it was not “clear that the amendment could avoid unintended consequences. In the current fight over spending and the debt, the GOP Congressional leadership has worked well to protect the defense budget from a President who constantly cites the need to cut it. But under a mandated need to balance spending, the inevitable horse-trading would likely default to cutting defense while ducking fights on domestic programs.” [Editorial, Wall Street Journal, 7/19/11]