Virginia Prospers in Spite of Kaine
In his July11 commentary (“The truth speaks well of Kaine”), Sen.John Edwards claims to want a senator who will rise above partisanship and special-interest politics. It’s funny that his choice for senator is the former chairman of the Democratic National Committee, Tim Kaine, who has repeatedly said he will do what President Barack Obama asks of him.
Edwards takes aim at my organization, Americans for Prosperity, and criticizes a recent bus tour in which we highlighted the failed policies of the Kaine administration in Virginia, and the failed policies he’s advocated for as Obama’s hand-selected national leader.
Edwards’ piece reads like a page of liberal talking points: misleading statistics, blaming Bush and revisionist history.
Kaine’s tenure as governor was marked by billions of dollars in proposed tax increases. Virginia’s constitution requires a balanced budget, but does not specify how it is balanced. Kaine chose to propose massive tax increases each year of his governorship, seeking to raise everything from the gas tax and the sales tax to the income tax and countless others. The nonpartisan Politifact ruled that Kaine proposed raising taxes billions of dollars in just four years.
Kaine can hardly claim credit for leaving the state with a smaller general fund budget than he inherited. Thankfully in Virginia, we have a conservative House of Delegates that provided strong fiscal management, shot down Kaine’s tax increases and made responsible cuts to the state budget without a tax increase. In fact, under Kaine’s “leadership” VDOT sat on $1 billion while closing rest areas in a childlike attempt to force lawmakers to raise the gas tax.
Recently, Kaine said, “If you decline to state your position, I’ve got a pretty good idea of what your position is … .” The problem is, even when Kaine tells you what his position is, you can’t trust him. In 2005, when he was running for governor, Kaine pledged not to seek a tax increase until revenues could be set aside for transportation. But after only seven days in office, Kaine proposed his first of many billion-dollar tax increases.
Virginians are used to the Kaine tap dance. After all, walking the tight-rope comes naturally to Kaine, who says he’s pro-life but governs pro-choice; he says he’s against the death penalty, but governs otherwise. He claims he supports the Second Amendment, but as mayor of Richmond used taxpayer dollars to bus supporters to an anti-gun rally and considered suing gun manufacturers for gun-related crimes.
This is a typical tactic of the left, run from the facts, but the fact is: When given the chance to lead and stand up for Virginia and policies that have made Virginia a great place for business, Kaine declines to take a stand against his party and do what is financially best for Virginia.
He failed to stand up for Virginia businesses when the president attacked our right-to-work laws. He declined to take a stance on a National Labor Relations Board that is doing its best to kill profitable businesses. He remained silent as government regulations made it permissible for unions to organize a workplace with as few as three people.
It’s clear that Virginia is a great state in which to live, work and raise a family in spite of, not because of, Tim Kaine.