Richmond, VA - No one would deny that this has been a bad week for George Allen and his allies. National and state publications have called them out for their false, misleading attacks and playing politics with our national defense. This week, George Allen launched disingenuous attacks on Governor Kaine that distorted his record, but major media outlets across the state point out that the truth is, Allen supported the gridlock and massive spending that helped lead to last summer’s debt crisis. Here's just a sample of coverage Allen has received this week:
Roanoke Times Editorial: Allen's leadership gap on the budget deficit
It's a little hard to follow the hysteria-laced attacks by Senate candidate George Allen and fellow Republicans against his opponent Tim Kaine...Kaine didn't have a vote last summer when Congress passed a bipartisan deal that raised the federal debt ceiling and laid the groundwork for deep spending reductions. But he supported the proposal because it put pressure on Congress to get its finances in order while averting default on national debts that could have deepened the ongoing global economic crisis...While his colleagues were on Capitol Hill taking tough votes, Allen was free to stand on the sidelines and criticize, but he has never offered a coherent alternative. Like 9th District Rep. Morgan Griffith, Allen bellyached that the budget cuts should have been deeper, a posture he's chosen to ignore now that he's airing ominous TV ads and firing off emails that accuse Kaine of laying waste to Virginia's economy. The budget deal contains nearly $500 billion in automatic defense spending cuts over the next decade that would squeeze the commonwealth, home to many defense contractors and military bases. But demands by Allen and other Republicans that the savings instead come from domestic programs are deliberately misleading. The across-the-board cuts already gouge another $500 billion from education, safety net and other services. The Office of Management and Budget has estimated that 700,000 children and mothers will lose nutritional assistance. More than 25,000 teachers and teaching aides will lose their jobs. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services predicts 2,300 medical research grants will be canceled, 100,000 children will be shut out of Head Start programs, and 80,000 more will no longer qualify for child care assistance. Every member of Congress who voted for last summer's budget bill did so hoping that the so-called supercommittee would come up with a substitute for the automatic cuts scheduled to begin in January. But any serious solution to the deficit would require difficult decisions about Medicare benefits, tax increases and, yes, cuts in defense spending as troops withdraw from the Middle East. Only a handful of congressional representatives dare to broach those topics. So far, Allen has demonstrated no evidence that he would help to fill that leadership gap.
Associated Press: Allen airs campaign ad on possible defense cuts that distorts Kaine’s position
Republican former Sen. George Allen is airing a new ad that deftly fosters a false impression that his Democratic opponent, Tim Kaine, supports potential deep military spending cuts under a debt-reduction compromise. The ad is rooted in Saturday’s debate between the candidates, when Allen attacked Kaine for supporting a bipartisan compromise in August that allowed Congress to increase the nation’s debt ceiling. The deal between House Republicans, the Democratic-controlled Senate and the OK of the White House, came hours before the deadline for raising the amount of money the government can borrow. As an incentive, the agreement prescribes draconian cuts both parties would find unpalatable — $487 billion to defense over 10 years plus $492 billion in automatic cuts if a bipartisan congressional “super committee” came up with $1.2 trillion in savings. The committee failed. 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. 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.”
Washington Times: Virginia GOP attack on Kaine ricochets
The Virginia Republican Party lambasted Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Tim Kaine on Monday for backing a congressional deal that’s led to the specter of $500 billion in defense cuts starting next year — despite a majority of the state’s Republican lawmakers, including House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, having voted for the plan...In the first general-election debate with Republican George Allen, Mr. Kaine called last year’s deal to increase the country’s debt ceiling “the right thing to do.” But according to an analysis released last week, more than 207,000 jobs in the state could be on the line, absent action from Congress. Thirty percent of Northern Virginia's government-rich economy relies on defense-spending contracts, and the southeastern Hampton Roads area is home to numerous military bases...But the original plan was backed by Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell and received bipartisan support from Virginia’s congressional delegation: six of the delegation’s eight Republicans voted for it. The lone dissenters were Rep. J. Randy Forbes, who represents the Hampton Roads region, and Rep. Morgan Griffith, who cited the absence of a hard balanced-budget amendment as a reason for his opposition. Mr. Kaine’s campaign said the Republican charges were way off-base. “As Gov. Kaine has said before, these sequestration cuts are the wrong cuts, and Congress must reach a bipartisan deal to avoid them,” said Kaine spokeswoman Brandi Hoffine. “George Allen opposed last year’s deal because he wanted even deeper cuts, and now his campaign is attempting to use the threat of 200,000 Virginia jobs lost to score political points.”
Associated Press: Chamber of Commerce airs ad hitting Kaine on taxes, regulations, a day after endorsing Allen
But the Chamber ad neglects Kaine’s role in eliminating Virginia’s estate tax and increasing the earning threshold for low-income residents that removed more than 100,000 households from the state tax rolls...It’s not the first time the big-business advocacy group has aided Allen. It aired a pro-Allen spot in February that never mentioned Kaine. At the time, Allen was vying for the GOP nomination against three conservatives. The ad, titled “Wrong Track,” uses a railroad allegory throughout. The viewer glides down tracks as one billboard after another zips by, each making a new claim. As the ad closes, the track dead-ends off a deep cliff. The allegations are broad enough that they convey some truth. However, like most of the acidic political advertising by independent outside groups in Virginia and other battleground states with pivotal Senate races, the context is so lacking that a full, balanced understanding of the issue is impossible.