Richmond, VA - Following the release of another false ad by George Allen's allies at Crossroads GPS, Kaine for Virginia released this fact check and statement:
"If George Allen and Karl Rove want to talk about spending, that's a conversation we're happy to have," said Kaine for Virginia Communications Director Brandi Hoffine. "As governor, George Allen increased spending by 45 percent. As senator, he took a record surplus and turned it into a massive deficit, adding more than $3 trillion to our national debt. His record of fiscal recklessness and putting tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans ahead of investments aimed at helping students, seniors, veterans, businesses and families stands in stark contrast to Governor Kaine's record of working across the aisle to cut more than $5 billion in spending, recruit new companies to the Commonwealth in the midst of a recession George Allen helped create, and make historic investments in higher education, including millions in tuition assistance to help make college more affordable.
"George Allen's allies, like Karl Rove and other outside groups representing special interests, have spent millions to re-elect him. It's no surprise considering that the policies George Allen supported last time he represented Virginia in the Senate chiefly benefited those same groups. But, Virginia's families and businesses can't afford six more years."
Over the past year, 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 has twice declined, opting instead to bolster his re-election campaign with false, negative advertising.
Quick Facts You Should Know
AP: Kaine Cut Nearly $6 Billion And Balanced The Budget. [Associated Press, 11/10/11]
Kaine Left The Overall Tax Burden On Virginians Lower Than Allen. [Tax Foundation, accessed 11/28/11]
Kaine’s Higher-Education Proposal Added “$26 Million For Need-Based Financial Aid.” [Richmond Times-Dispatch, 2/8/09]
As Governor, Kaine Worked with Republicans to Pass the Biggest Higher Education Bond Package in Virginia History. [The Bond Buyer, 4/17/08]
As Senator, Allen was a Critical Vote for the Largest Cut to Student Aid in U.S. History, as Tuition Rose 40%. [Vote 363, 12/21/05, CQ Floor Votes; AP, 12/19/05;Trends In College Pricing 2011, College Board]
McDonnell Said Stimulus Helped Us In The Short Run And Said President Obama Deserved Some Credit. [The Washington Post, 6/3/12]
FACT CHECK: CROSSROADS AD "HOLES"
CROSSROADS CLAIM: When Kaine was Governor spending soared with budget shortfalls every year.
REALITY: Kaine cut billions in spending and balanced the budget every year.
AP: Kaine Cut Nearly $6 Billion And Balanced The Budget. The Associated Press reported, “While the recession depleted revenues, Kaine and the General Assembly cut nearly $6 billion and never finished a fiscal year with insufficient funds…” [Associated Press, 11/10/11]
Richmond Times-Dispatch: “In Reality, Kaine Worked With Legislators To Cut More Than $5 Billion To Offset Dwindling Revenue And Balanced The Budget As Required By State Law.” The Richmond Times-Dispatch reported, “In reality, Kaine worked with legislators to cut more than $5 billion to offset dwindling revenue and balanced the budget as required by state law.” [Richmond Times-Dispatch, 4/25/12]
CROSSROADS CLAIM: Kaine backed massive tax hikes.
REALITY: Kaine cut taxes and the tax burden on Virginians was lower under Kaine than it was under Allen.
Kaine Ended Virginia’s Estate Tax In Order To Make Virginia More Competitive In Attracting “Small Businesses And Retirees.” A Wall Street Journal editorial said, “Democratic Governor Tim Kaine and the Republican-controlled legislature struck a deal to abolish the state's estate tax. […] The tax only brings in about $140 million a year to Richmond from several hundred estates, but the levy has made it harder for Virginia to compete for small businesses and retirees with Florida and the 24 other states that no longer have a death tax.” [Wall Street Journal, Editorial, 9/6/06]
Kaine Signed Laws That “Would Remove About 140,000 Low-Income Virginians From The Tax-Rolls." The Roanoke Times reported, “Gov. Tim Kaine has signed legislation that would remove about 140,000 low-income Virginians from the tax rolls… Kaine signed bills…that will gradually increase the state income tax filing threshold from $7,000 to $11,950 for individuals and from $12,000 to $23,900 for married couples. The bills also increase the personal exemption from $900 to $930 for all taxpayers.” [Roanoke Times, 3/22/07]
Kaine Left The Overall Tax Burden On Virginians Lower Than Allen. According to the Tax Foundation’s data, the state & local tax burden for Virginians was lower during Kaine’s gubernatorial tenure than during Allen’s Governorship. [Tax Foundation, accessed 11/28/11]
During The Great Recession, Governor Kaine Presided Over The Biggest Decrease In The State Tax Burden On Virginians Since At Least 1977.According to the Tax Foundation, the decrease of the state-local tax burden on Virginians between 2008 and 2009 (from 9.6% to 9.1%) was the biggest since at least 1977. [Tax Foundation, accessed 11/28/11]
CROSSROADS CLAIM: Kaine made “devastating” cuts to higher education
REALITY: Kaine worked with Republicans to make historic investments in higher education.
AS GOVERNOR, KAINE WORKED WITH REPUBLICANS TO PASS THE BIGGEST HIGHER EDUCATION BOND PACKAGE IN VIRGINIA HISTORY
2008: General Assembly Agreed to $1.4 Billion Bond Package For Higher Ed, Which Kaine Called “Critical to Our Economic Success.” The Bond Buyer reported, “Virginia lawmakers late Tuesday reached a preliminary agreement on a $1.4 billion bond package to fund construction at the state's colleges, parks, and mental health facilities. . . . ‘The General Assembly has worked very hard over the last months to advance our higher education bond proposal,’ Kaine said in a statement. ‘The completion of their work will signal a record investment in Virginia's higher education institutions, which are absolutely critical to our economic success.’” [The Bond Buyer, 4/17/08]
- Roanoke Times: $1.4 Billion Bond Package For Higher Education A Rare Moment To Be Proud Of All Lawmakers. In an editorial, the Roanoke Times wrote, “Rare is the moment when Virginians can look to Richmond and be proud of every single lawmaker. It's been a long time coming, but just such an auspicious occasion occurred last week when all lawmakers agreed to a $1.46 billion bond package that, for the most part, will be spent bettering the state's universities and community colleges.” [Editorial, The Roanoke Times, 4/28/08]
Kaine’s Higher-Education Proposal Added “$26 Million For Need-Based Financial Aid.” According to the Richmond Times Dispatch, “Gov. Timothy M. Kaine's higher-education proposal would: . . . Add nearly $26 million for need-based financial aid for fiscal 2010, bringing the total to $143.9 million.” [Richmond Times-Dispatch, 2/8/09]
REALITY: As Senator, Allen voted for historic cuts to higher education while tuition went up by 40%.
AS SENATOR, ALLEN VOTED FOR THE LARGEST CUT TO STUDENT AID IN U.S. HISTORY, AS TUITION ROSE 40%
2005: Allen Was Critical Vote for Largest Student Loan Cuts in History. Allen voted for the final version of the 2005 budget reconciliation bill, which cut $12.7 billion from college loans, the largest cuts to the student loan program in its history. The measure was approved 50-50, with the Vice President voting to break the tie. [Vote 363, 12/21/05, CQ Floor Votes; AP, 12/19/05; Washington Post, 12/19/05]
- The Washington Post: “And In One Of The Most Controversial Provisions, The Agreement Would Shave $12.7 Billion Out Of The Federal Student Loan Program.” The Washington Post reported, “And in one of the most controversial provisions, the agreement would shave $12.7 billion out of the federal student loan program, in large part by locking in interest rates often at a higher level than the current variable rates. ‘This bill is the largest raid on student aid in history. At a time when millions of American families are struggling to keep up with skyrocketing tuition costs, it is shameful for Congress to raid student aid in order to pay for tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans,’ said Rep. George Miller (Calif.), the senior Democrat on the House education committee.” [Washington Post, 12/19/05]
- AP: “The Student Loan Program Would Endure The Largest Cut In Its History.” The AP reported, “As Congress moves to slash $40 billion in spending, no program will take a bigger hit than college loans, where almost $13 billion would be cut over five years. . . . [O]verall, the student loan program would endure the largest cut in its history, and most of the money would not be pumped back into education.” [AP, 12/19/05]
College Tuition Rose By Over 40% During Allen's Term In The Senate. The average published tuition and fees as measured in in constant 2011 dollars increased by 40.49% for public, 4-year institutions from 2000-2007. The price was $4586 for the 2000-2001 school year and $6443 for the 2006-2007 school year, representing a 40.49% increase. [Trends In College Pricing 2011, College Board]
ALLEN VOTED TO END PELL GRANTS FOR 84,000 STUDENTS
2003: Allen Opposed $2.2 Billion for Higher Education, Including $1.7 Billion for Pell Grants. Allen, on September 9, 2003, voted against the Kennedy amendment to H.R.2660, which would have provided an additional $2.2 billion for higher education, including $1.7 billion for Pell Grants, $157 million for federal work study programs, and $115 million for supplemental education opportunity grants. The motion was rejected by a vote of 49-46, with 5 Republicans, 43 Democrats and 1 Independent voting in favor. [Vote 331, 9/9/03, CQ Floor Votes]
- Budget Officials At Education Department Estimated 84,000 Students Would Have Lost Their Pell Grant Eligibility If Senate Amendment Had Not Passed. The Chronicle of Higher Education reported, “[L]awmakers also approved an amendment that prohibits the Bush administration from changing the formula the federal government uses to calculate a student's need for financial aid. Budget officials at the Education Department have estimated that 84,000 students would lose their eligibility for Pell Grants in the 2004-5 academic year if the change, announced in May, went into effect.” [The Chronicle of Higher Education, 9/19/03]
2006: Allen Voted For Tax Breaks For Big Oil Over Tax Breaks For Tuition. In May 2006, Allen voted for the final version of the $70 billion tax reconciliation bill, which removed a provision that had allowed taxpayers to deduct up to $4000 of college tuition. The tuition deduction was included in earlier versions of the bill but was stripped in the final version. The tuition deduction could have been paid for by reducing a tax break for oil companies. Republican Senators Olympia Snowe and George Voinovich voted against the bill. Allen voted yes. [Vote 118, 5/11/06, CQ Floor Votes; CNNMoney.com, 5/11/06]
- GOP Tax Reconciliation Bill “Does Not Contain A Provision Allowing Taxpayers To Deduct Up To $4,000 Of College Tuition.” The Hill reported on “the GOP-sponsored tax reconciliation bill that does not contain a provision allowing taxpayers to deduct up to $4,000 of college tuition.” [The Hill, 5/11/06]
- GOP Tax Reconciliation Bill Removed The Extension Of Tuition Deduction, Which Would Have Been Paid For By Reducing A Tax Break For Oil Companies. CNNMoney.com reported, “The Senate on Thursday passed a GOP-supported final tax reconciliation bill . . . With the exception of some popular provisions like AMT relief, many elements in the reconciliation bill have been sharply criticized by Democrats and some moderate Republicans. They contend some of the tax breaks, especially the extension of the investment tax rates, are too costly and benefit too few taxpayers - namely, upper-income ones. Democrats also have objected to the removal of an extension for tuition deduction, which they say could have been paid for if tax writers had left in a provision that would have reduced a key tax break for oil companies, which would have raised $4.3 billion in revenue.” [CNNMoney.com, 5/11/06]
- Lieberman Blasted Bill For Putting Tax Cuts For Big Oil Ahead Of Tax Breaks For College Tuition. A press release from the office of Senator Lieberman stated, “Today, May 11, 2006, Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-CT) said he will vote against the Tax Reconciliation Conference Report because of the bill's failure to relieve the financial burden of the middle class while giving unnecessary taxes breaks to big corporations and the rich. Lieberman blasted Republican tax conferees for restoring more than $5 billion in tax breaks which favor big oil during a period of record gas prices for the Connecticut consumer. He protested the exclusion of a college tuition deduction and extension of the research and development tax credit.” The press release quoted Lieberman as saying, “[T]his Republican bill showers tax breaks on the nation's wealthiest, who don't need the help, the oil industry, which is enjoying record profits, and explodes the debt, placing a hidden tax on our children and grandchildren. . . . The final conference report, also protects the ‘last in first out’ (LIFO) accounting loophole and foreign tax credits Big Oil companies get for overseas operations. . . . Look at what's missing from this bill: The state and local sales tax deduction, the college tuition deduction, the welfare to work tax credit that encouraged employers to lower welfare roles by creating jobs; and the research and development tax credit that helped spur the innovation we need to compete in the global economy." [Press Release, Office of Senator Lieberman, 5/11/06]
REALITY: While Allen was Governor, he united Democrats, Republicans and the business community against his proposed cuts to higher education.
1995: The Virginia Business Higher Education Council Was Formed To Defeat Allen’s Plan To Cut Higher Education Funding. An article that appeared in both the Roanoke Times and the Virginian-Pilot detailed Allen’s failed effort to pass a $2.1 billion tax cut at the expense of higher education and other priorities. The article stated, “The governor wanted to save $150 million by slicing education funding, 1,100 state jobs, police protection and a number of popular social programs such as ‘Meals on Wheels’ for senior citizens. . . . Momentum to defeat Allen's plan grew slowly. . . . The decisive blows to Allen, however, did not come from constituent letters, polls or backroom meetings in the Capitol. Instead, the knockout came from corporate boardrooms, where a group of the state's most influential businessmen united against the governor. Calling itself the Virginia Business-Higher Education Council, the group formed in late 1993 out of concern that Virginia colleges were slowly being gutted by budget cuts. During the recession, the legislature had sliced $400 million from higher education to balance the state budget. As a result, tuitions in Virginia climbed to the second-highest in the nation. The businessmen feared that soaring costs would make college education inaccessible. They had been hoping, as the state's economy began to improve, that money would be restored to universities. When Allen proposed an additional $47 million cut to higher education, the group jumped into action. . . . The group's opposition was a blow to Republicans. About two-thirds of the group's members had contributed substantial sums to Allen's 1993 gubernatorial campaign. Now, many of the same people were standing up at budget hearings and all but accusing the governor of inventing a financial crisis to further his political ambitions. In private, the group was promising help for friendly legislators who encountered election-year problems because they opposed the tax cut. The coup, however, was achieved by [John] Hazel. Working behind the scenes, he persuaded three former governors - Republicans Godwin and Linwood Holton and Democrat Gerald Baliles - to sign a letter deploring the cuts to higher education. The release of the letter on Feb. 1 provided the final measure of protection to Democrats worried about bucking the governor.” [Roanoke Times, 2/26/95; Virginian-Pilot, 2/27/95]
CROSSROADS CLAIM: Kaine supported the Recovery Act.
REALITY: The Recovery Act helped the economy, as even Governor McDonnell has acknowledged.
EVEN GOVERNOR MCDONNELL ADMITTED STIMULUS HELPED
McDonnell Said Stimulus Helped Us In The Short Run And Said President Obama Deserved Some Credit. The Washington Post reported, “Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) wandered off script somewhat Sunday as a surrogate for the Mitt Romney presidential campaign, conceding that President Obama’s stimulus measures helped his state weather the economic crisis. . . . ‘Did it help us in the short run with health care and education and spending to balance the budget? Sure,’ . . . During his CNN appearance, when asked whether Obama deserved ‘just a tiny bit of credit’ for helping the economy, McDonnell said: ‘Well, sure. I think there are national policies that have had some impact.’” [The Washington Post, 6/3/12]
U.S. Has Created More Jobs In Last Two Years, Than Were Created In The Entire Time Allen Was In The U.S. Senate. The U.S. has added more private sector jobs in the last two years – 3.9 million -- than were added during Allen’s entire tenure in the Senate. [Bureau of Labor Statistics]
Washington Post: “CBO’s Own Analysis Found That The Package Added As Many As 3.3 Million Jobs To The Economy.” Reporting on the congressional testimony of CBO Director, Douglas Elmendorf, the Washington Post reported, “CBO’s own analysis found that the package added as many as 3.3 million jobs to the economy during the second quarter of 2010, and may have prevented the nation from lapsing back into recession.” [Washington Post, 6/6/12]
CBO Director “Emphatic About The Value Of The 2009 Stimulus;” 80 Percent Of Economists Agree That Stimulus Lowered Unemployment. The Washington Post wrote, “Did the stimulus work? Certainly not according to Republicans, who regularly blast President Obama’s ‘failed’ economic policies on the campaign trail… But on Wednesday, under questioning from skeptical Republicans, the director of the nonpartisan (and widely respected) Congressional Budget Office was emphatic about the value of the 2009 stimulus. And, he said, the vast majority of economists agree. In a survey conducted by the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, 80 percent of economic experts agreed that, because of the stimulus, the U.S. unemployment rate was lower at the end of 2010 than it would have been otherwise. ‘Only 4 percent disagreed or strongly disagreed,’ CBO Director Douglas Elmendorf told the House Budget Committee. ‘That,’ he added, ‘is a distinct minority.’” [Washington Post, 6/6/12]
WHEN THE RECOVERY ACT PASSED, ECONOMY WAS IN FREE FALL
2008: Real GDP Contracted At An Annualized Rate Of 8.9% In The 4th Quarter Of 2008. According to data from the Commerce Department’s Bureau of Economic Analysis, real gross domestic product contracted at a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 8.9% in the 4th quarter of 2008. [Press Release, Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1/27/12]
The U.S. Lost 779,000 Jobs In January Of 2009. The Associated Press reported, “January's  job losses were the smallest since the recession began and are down from the huge loss of 779,000 jobs in January 2009.” [Associated Press, 2/5/10; Press Release, Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2/5/10]
March 9th, 2009: Dow Closed At 6,547.05, A 12-Year Low. In an article headlined, “For Dow, Another 12-Year Low -- S&P Also Finishes At Lowest Level In More Than A Decade As Wall Street Resumes Its Retreat On Economic Worries,” CNNMoney reported, “Stocks tumbled Monday, with the Dow and S&P 500 ending at fresh 12-year lows. . . . The Dow Jones industrial average (INDU) lost 80 points, or 1.2%, to end at 6,547.05, its lowest point since April 15, 1997. The S&P 500 (SPX) index lost nearly 7 points or 1%, to end at 676.53, its lowest point since Sept. 12, 1996.” [CNNMoney.Com, 3/9/09]
CROSSROADS CLAIM: Kaine backed wasteful spending
REALITY: Allen is the expert on wasteful spending. Kaine cut billions. Allen turned surpluses into deficits and increased the debt by over $3 trillion, over $16,000 for every second he was Senator.
AS SENATOR, ALLEN VOTED FOR $3 TRILLION IN NEW DEBT
As Senator, Allen Voted To Add Over $3 Trillion To The National Debt, Over $16,000 Every Second He Was In Office. PolitiFact Virginia wrote, “Under the budgets approved during Allen’s term, debt climbed by $3.202 trillion. Congress sets budgets through a series of appropriations bills, and Allen supported all of the roughly four dozen bills to hit the Senate floor during his term. . . . Radtke said debt increased by $3 trillion during Allen’s Senate term, a figure equal to $16,000 per second. The actual figures were $3.202 trillion, or $16,896.68 per second.” [Richmond Times-Dispatch, “PolitiFact Virginia,” 4/15/11]
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 REFUSES TO DISCLOSE THE EARMARKS HE SECURED AS SENATOR
Allen Had An “Appropriations Request” Button On His Senate Website. According to Government Executive Magazine, Allen had an “Appropriations Request” button on his website. [Government Executive Magazine, 5/1/06]
March 2006: Allen Said, “Every Single Earmark I’ve Gotten, I’m Proud Of;” Allen Said Legislators Who Attach Earmarks Should Be Identified. PolitiFact reported, “Allen clearly sought pork for Virginia. ‘Every single earmark I’ve gotten, I’m proud of,’ he told a town hall meeting in Chesterfield County on March 20, 2006, according to a Richmond Times-Dispatch article. Allen said then that legislators who attach earmarks to appropriations bills should be identified.” [PolitiFact, 4/18/12]
- A Few Months Later, Allen Refused To Identify Earmarks He Requested In Fiscal 2006. PolitiFact reported, “A few months later, Allen and other members of Virginia's congressional delegation refused cooperate with a Times-Dispatch reporter’s request to identify the earmarks they requested during fiscal 2006.” [PolitiFact, 4/18/12]
Allen Voted For Budgets That Contained 52,319 Earmarks Worth $121.8 Billion. PolitiFact reported, “Allen, as a senator, voted on the budgets from fiscal years 2002 to 2006. The 2007 budget did not pass until the end late January of that year, a few weeks after Allen left the Senate. He was defeated the previous fall by Democrat Jim Webb. The five budgets Allen voted on included 52,319 earmarks valued at $121.8 billion, according to the Citizens Against Government Waste. Hansen said that Radtke’s campaign, seeking to be conservative in its claim, chopped off about 25 percent the Citizens’ numbers and estimated Allen voted for 40,000 earmarks valued at $90 billion.” [Politifact Virginia, 4/18/12]
REALITY: Allen “dramatically” expanded state spending as Governor.
Washington Post: “As Governor, Mr. Allen Expanded State Spending Dramatically...” [Editorial, Washington Post, 8/3/11]
PolitiFact: As Governor, Allen Increased Spending 45 Percent; His Claim That He Reined In Spending Rated “False.” In September 2011, PolitiFact Virginia wrote, “His campaign web site says that when Allen was governor, ‘He challenged critics and sentiment that suggested it couldn’t be done, reining in government spending and substantially reducing the size of the state workforce.’ . . . When Allen took office in January 1994, he inherited an overall $14.7 billion budget for the state fiscal year that started the previous July 1. At the end of his term in January 1998, he left behind a $20.7 billion proposed budget for the fiscal year that started the following July 1. That means Allen endorsed $6 billion in additional spending when he was governor -- a 40.7 percent increase. But looking at overall spending may be unfair. Slightly more than half of outlays during Allen’s years came from the non-general fund, over which a governor has limited control. The fund consists of earmarked revenues such as college tuition and federal highway grants. A better gauge comes from examining the general fund, which supports public education, health programs and public safety. It’s mostly supported by state income and sales taxes. The general fund was almost $6.8 billion when Allen took office. At the end of his term, he proposed a $9.9 billion general fund budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 1998. That means Allen endorsed $3.1 billion in additional general fund spending when he was governor -- a 45.6 percent rise. . . . Our ruling: Allen takes credit for ‘reining in state spending’ when he was governor. . . . We rate the statement False.” [PolitiFact Virginia, 9/12/11]
Allen Was Elected “On A Promise To Reduce The Size And Cost Of Government,” But His Farewell Budget Was “The Largest Ever In Virginia.” In December 1997, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported: “Gov. George Allen, elected four years ago on a promise to reduce the size and cost of state government, yesterday unveiled a record farewell budget fattened by almost $ 4 billion and proposed spending nearly every nickel of it.” The Times-Dispatch went on to note that Allen’s two-year budget was “the largest ever in Virginia.” [Richmond Times-Dispatch, 12/20/97]
- Newport News Daily Press Editorial: Allen “Campaigned As A Slayer Of Big Government,” But Left Governor’s Office “Playing Santa Claus.” In December 1997, the Newport News Daily Press opined that while Allen campaigned for governor “as a slayer of big government,” he left “playing Santa Claus” as he faced a run for the Senate in 2000. The Daily Press wrote: “Allen campaigned as a slayer of big government, eliminator of bureaucratic excess and a tax-cutter. During his first year he promised a tax cut of $2.1 billion over five years. To balance the budget, he proposed slashing everything from education to mental health. Included was a 50 percent reduction in state funds to privately operated museums. Lack of public support saved him from himself. Now Allen is leaving office. He is four years away from the promises of the campaign of 1993. He is much closer to the campaign of 2000, when, he has said, he expects to run for the U.S. Senate. So last week, instead of making announcements about draconian budget cuts, he was going around the state playing Santa Claus and making promises of generous funding recommendations for the very agencies he once attacked. Not once did he propose a tax cut.” [Editorial, Newport News Daily Press, 12/17/97]
- Allen Once Sounded Eager to Curtail the Size Of State Government, But Then Presented A $40 Billion Record Breaking Budget. The Richmond Times-Dispatch reported, “In Virginia, Santa Claus wore cowboy boots. Gov. George Allen showered billions of dollars of goodies in his recommended state budget for the next two fiscal years. By plane and sport-utility vehicle, the Republican governor traveled the state, delivering pricey presents, perks and pet projects. It was an extraordinary performance by the departing governor, who once sounded more like the Grinch eager to curtail the size and reach of state government. Instead, Allen on Dec. 19 presented the biggest two-year budget - about $ 40 billion - in Virginia's history.” [Richmond Times Dispatch, 12/31/97]
- Larry Sabato On Allen’s Outgoing Budget: “I Thought Republicans Opposed The Wanton Expenditure Of Tax Funds. Apparently, Pork Is Fine If Produced By A Republican Santa Claus.” [Richmond Times-Dispatch, 12/31/97]