Richmond, VA - As George Allen continues to run a campaign based on protecting opportunities for a select few special interests and returning to the same policies that helped create the current economic mess, a chief architect of the economic meltdown and someone who's always put special interests first, Karl Rove, is again coming to Allen's rescue. Since their first negative, misleading attack last fall, Crossroads GPS’ Virginia ads have been debunked and criticized by newspapers, editorial boards, and independent fact-checkers across the state, and called "erroneous," and filled with "demonstrable falsehoods and distortions." Today's ad is no different.
Kaine for Virginia Communications Director Brandi Hoffine released the following statement in response:
"Another day, another false attack ad by Karl Rove to help bail out George Allen's campaign. Both Tim Kaine and George Allen have served in party leadership posts, but there's a big difference. As Governor, Tim Kaine put partisanship aside, and worked together with Republicans to find common ground. The result? At the end of his term, Virginia was ranked as best state for business four years in a row, best managed state, best state in which to raise a child, attracted numerous Fortune 500 companies, had a significantly lower unemployment rate than the national average, and made major investments in higher education. As Senator, George Allen toed the party line, turning a record surplus into a massive deficit, voting against pay-as-you-go legislation and supporting the policies that led to near economic collapse. So, this is a debate we're happy to have any day."
Today’s ad marks the third effort by Crossroads to buoy George Allen’s campaign with false, negative messaging. Last night, in a speech to more than 150 energized grassroots supporters, Tim Kaine laid out a positive, optimistic vision for our country’s future. This morning, he announced a commitment to eight general election broadcast debates in order for every Virginian to have the opportunity to hear directly from the candidates on the issues in this race.
Please see below for a fact check on Crossroads GPS' latest misleading television ad:
CROSSROADS CLAIM: “When Tim Kaine went to Washington… He left Virginia behind”
REALITY: George Allen is the only candidate in this race who has ever held office in Washington – Twice.
REALITY: Tim Kaine served the Commonwealth with distinction all four years, earned state the reputation as the Best State for Business, and kept unemployment well below the national average.
Three Different Groups Named VA Best State For Business In Kaine’s Last Year In Office, And 2009 Pew Study Praised VA’s Budgeting
• Forbes Ranked Virginia “Best State For Business” For All Four Years Of Kaine’s Term. The Virginian-Pilot reported, “Forbes.com has ranked Virginia the ‘best state for business’ for the fourth consecutive year, Gov. Timothy M. Kaine's office said Wednesday.” [The Virginian-Pilot, 9/24/09] • Virginia Was Named Top State For Business By CNBC In 2007 And 2009. [CNBC.com, 2007, 2009] • CNBC: Virginia “Has What It Takes” To Emerge From “An Economy Turned Upside Down.” CNBC reported, “It has been a year of seismic shifts in American business and in the competitive landscape. An economy turned upside-down. What state has what it takes to emerge from all that? America's top state for business 2009, Virginia.” [CNBC, Street Signs, 7/23/09] • Pollina Corporate Real Estate Report Named Virginia Most Pro-Business State In 2007 And 2009. [Kaine Administration Press Release, 3/19/07; Virginian Pilot, 6/24/09] • 2009 Pew Study Praised Virginia Budgeting During The Recession, Saying Virginia Was “Better Positioned To Weather Bad Times.” The Pew Center on the States issued a report in February 2009 titled, "Trade-off Time: How Four States Continue to Deliver," which praised Virginia as one of four states leading the nation in making wise budget decisions during the recession. The report specifically praised Virginia Performs -- a program created by Governor Mark Warner and expanded by Governor Kaine -- for allowing Virginia “to systematically tackle the state’s budget crisis and increase agency productivity.” As a result of Virginia’s budgeting and management practices, the report stated that the Commonwealth "will be better positioned to weather bad times.” [Trade-off Time: How Four States Continue To Deliver, The Pew Center On The States, 2/11/09]
Washington Post: “During Most Severe Economic Downturn Since The 1930s,” Kaine’s “Performance Did The State Proud.” In an editorial, the Washington Post reported, During his four-year term as Governor, “Mr. Kaine's formidable talents, intellectual, political and otherwise, were put to the test” by “the most severe economic downturn since the 1930s.” According to the Post, “Mr. Kaine rose to the occasion. . . . And even in cutting hundreds of jobs and $7 billion from the state's budget, he did so with an eye to preserving the safety net for its most vulnerable citizens. Virginia's financial and budgetary travails have been no worse than those of other states, but its future is almost certainly brighter than most. His performance did the state proud.” [Editorial, The Washington Post, 1/10/10]
Unemployment In Virginia Was Lower Than The National Average Under Kaine. Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that unemployment in during the recession was consistently two to three points lower in Virginia under Governor Kaine than the national average. [BLS Unemployment Statistics]
CROSSROADS CLAIM: “As Virginia lost over 65,000 jobs Kaine put partisan ambitions first.”
REALITY: Virginia lost jobs because of a national recession George Allen’s policies helped create.
CQ: George Allen Voted With George W. Bush Over 95% During Senate Career. According to Congressional Quarterly, during his career Senator George Allen had a Presidential Support score of over 95%. [Congressional Quarterly Annual Almanacs 2001-2006]
Allen in 2001: “By Using That Fiscal Discipline Over 10 Years, We'll Completely Eliminate The National Debt.” Allen was interviewed by Wolf Blitzer on CNN 2/18/01. BLITZER: “As you know, there are some Republicans like Jim Jeffords of Vermont, Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island, suggesting they also agree it's too much, it should be a more modest tax cut.” ALLEN: “What we Republicans are trying to come up with, along with President Bush, is a very responsible approach, where you, first and foremost, I think, take a businesslike approach, and every dollar that comes in from Social Security gets put into a lockbox. And that discipline helps reduce the national debt. And indeed, by using that fiscal discipline over 10 years, we'll completely eliminate the national debt.” [CNN Late Edition With Wolf Blitzer, 2/18/01]
Allen Took America's Largest Budget Surplus And Turned It Into A Massive Federal Deficit. The Washington Post reported, “When Bush took office in January 2001, the government was forecasting a $5.6 trillion budget surplus between then and 2011.” As CNN put it: “[T]he federal budget surplus for fiscal year 2000 amounted to at least $230 billion, making it the largest in U.S. history.” The Washington Post continued, “Instead, it is now expecting to accumulate an extra $3 trillion in debt -- including a record $415 billion in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30.” [CNN,9/27/2000; Washington Post, 10/8/04]
Allen Voted Against Restoring PAYGO Rules At Least Six Times. Allen voted against restoring pay-as-you-go (PAYGO) rules at least six times, which would have required tax cuts and new entitlement spending to be offset with revenue increases or spending cuts. [Vote 38, 3/14/06; Vote 340, 11/17/05; Vote 283, 11/3/05; Vote 53, 3/16/05; Vote 38, 3/10/04; Vote 200, 5/23/03]
REALITY: GEORGE ALLEN USED HIS ENTIRE SENATE TERM TO POSITION HIMSELF TO RUN FOR PRESIDENT
Allen’s Number One Priority As Senator Was His Job As Chairman Of The National Republican Senatorial Committee
• Allen Upon Becoming NRSC Chairman: “I'm Going To Give All My Commitment To This Cause Of Enhancing Our Majority.” The Daily Press reported, “‘It is exciting,’ Allen said of the prospect of joining the Senate leadership. . . . The campaign committee chairmanship would increase Allen's national exposure, which already has been on the rise after less than two full years in the Senate. He has become a familiar face on the cable news networks. . . . The new position could also fuel speculation that the still-boyish-looking senator, who turned 50 this year, harbors presidential ambitions. . . . A 2008 campaign for the White House, however, assumes Allen wins re-election to his Senate seat in 2006. Allen brushed off such speculation in an interview Friday, but declined to rule out a future presidential race. ‘I'm going to give all my commitment to this cause of enhancing our majority,’ he said. ‘The future can take care of itself.’” [Daily Press, 11/10/02] • Allen Campaigned For NRSC Chairman Job By Setting “Blistering Fundraising Pace” As A Freshman Senator. Roll Call reported, “Allen has drawn the most attention of the three because of the blistering fundraising pace he has set since knocking off then-Sen.Chuck Robb (D-Va.) in 2000. Allen co-chaired the President's Dinner in June that raised $30 million for the NRSC and NRCC and has already established three political action committees and a 527 organization to funnel money to candidates.” [Roll Call, 9/9/02]
Allen Used His Job As Senator As A Steppingstone To Higher Office
• Allen Took Six Trips To Early Primary States To Explore Presidential Bid. [C-SPAN, 6/17/06] • Allen: “If I Had My Druthers, I Would Have Been Born In Iowa.” The Daily Press reported on a speech Allen gave in Iowa: “‘My parents were actually married in Sioux City, Iowa.’ said Allen, who was born in California. ‘If I had my druthers, I would have been born in Iowa. But at that time, I had to be really close to my mother.’” [Daily Press, 3/19/06]
CROSSROADS CLAIM: “Tim Kaine as national party chair, I still have to kind of pinch myself.”
REALITY: Allen had no problem with a Republican serving concurrently as Governor and National Party Chair
Allen On Gilmore As RNC Chair While Governor: “He Is The Perfect Choice To Serve In This Prominent Position.” Associated Press reported, “[A]s President-elect Bush's pick to lead the Republican National Committee, Gilmore will become an important salesman for Bush's $1.3 trillion tax cut. . . . ‘Jim Gilmore has worked tirelessly across Virginia and beyond to advance our party and its ideas,’ said Republican Sen.-elect George Allen, Gilmore's predecessor as governor. ‘He is the perfect choice to serve in this prominent position.’” [Associated Press, 12/22/2000]
Crossroads GPS’s Own, Karl Rove, Chose VA Governor Gilmore To Be RNC Chairman
• Bush Chose Virginia Governor Gilmore To Be RNC Chair At Karl Rove’s Behest. The New York Times reported, “As part of his broader political portfolio, Mr. Rove essentially controls the Republican National Committee. It was at his behest that Mr. Bush installed Gov. James S. Gilmore III of Virginia as the party chairman. ‘Karl called and said, “We think it would be a good thing to do if you'd like to do it,”’ Mr. Gilmore recalled.” [New York Times, 2/18/01] • Rove Installed VA Governor Gilmore As RNC Chairman. Slate reported, “Rove is the pooh-bah of national party politics: He helped install Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore as chairman of the RNC. [Slate Magazine, 7/7/01] • Rove Negotiated Selection Of VA Governor Gilmore To Be RNC Chairman. The Weekly Standard reported, “In Virginia in June, [Rove] addressed both the state party convention and a gathering of well-heeled Republican donors hosted by Gilmore. Rove, by the way, negotiated the selection of Gilmore as RNC chairman last winter with the governor's chief of staff, Boyd Marcus.” [The Weekly Standard, 8/20/01]
CROSSROADS CLAIM: “Selling policies he knows hurt Virginians.”
REALITY: The policies Kaine advocated as Chairman helped Virginia
CBO Estimated Stimulus Would Create Up To 3.6 Million Jobs. [PolitiFact, 10/21/11]
Richmond Times-Dispatch Editorial: “Federal Stimulus Spending - Which Republicans Have Condemned - Spared The Commonwealth From Making Deeper Cuts.” A Richmond Times Dispatch editorial discussed Gov. Bob McDonnell’s handling of the Virginia budget: “First, federal stimulus spending - which Republicans have condemned - spared the commonwealth from making deeper cuts. Virginia's ‘balanced’ budget therefore relies in part on federal deficit spending.” [Richmond Times Dispatch, 10/14/10]
Millions Of Virginians Were Helped By Health Care Law, By Ending Insurance Company Abuses, Adding Free Preventive Care Under Medicare, And Allowing Young Adults To Stay On Parents Plan. [Department of Health And Human Services]
CROSSROADS CLAIM: Tim Kaine supported “Medicare spending cuts”
REALITY: $500 Billion in Medicare cuts has been repeatedly debunked
PolitiFact Ruled NRSC Claim That Sherrod Brown “Voted To Cut $500 Billion From Medicare” False. PolitiFact reported, “The NRSC’s claim cites a real figure -- $500 billion -- that is part of the health reform debate. But it incorrectly describes it as $500 billion in Medicare cuts. . . . On the Truth-Meter, the NRSC’s claim rates as False.” [PolitiFact Ohio, 6/23/11]
Politifact Oregon Ruled Claim That Suzanne Bonamici "Supports The $500 Billion Cut To Medicare Passed Last Year" Was False. [PolitiFact Oregon, 11/14/11]