Tags: vitter | acorn | payoff

Sen. Vitter: ACORN Getting 'Political Payoff'

Thursday, 29 Jan 2009 08:50 AM

Louisiana Republican Sen. David Vitter doesn’t think much of the Democrats’ economic stimulus bill. And he tells Newsmax TV he especially doesn’t like its provisions allocating billions for so-called “community organizations” like the controversial Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now.

Vitter lashed out at the proposal to give $4.2 billion to ACORN, which actively recruited voters for President Barack Obama and all Democrats during in the run up to the November election. [Editor's Note: See the full interview - go here now.]

“That’s just a political payoff,” Vitter tells Newsmax’s Ashley Martella. ACORN’s inclusion in the massive $825 billion economic stimulus package comes “not in spite of their voter registration fraud activity, really because of it in my opinion in terms of support from some of the liberals in Congress,” he said.

“It’s exactly the sort of thing Democrats tried to pass last year in the housing plan that I also opposed,” Vitter says. “In that bill we were at least able to change the language so that money couldn’t go to ACORN and other similar groups. But in this bill they’re right back at it and they’re trying to get the money to ACORN again,” he explains.

ACORN is under investigation in several states for voter registration fraud, Vitter points out.

Since Republicans seem to be united in their opposition to the stimulus bill as written, Newsmax asked Vitter if there’s any chance of a GOP filibuster.

“I think this is absolutely going to be filibustered in the sense that President Obama and his allies will have to get 60 votes in the Senate,” he says. “Now, obviously Democrats are already very near that, but I think they’re absolutely going to have to get 60 votes in the Senate to be able to pass this.”

Is President Obama being forthright when he talks of inclusion and a bipartisan approach to the stimulus plan?

“The president talks about being very open, wanting to pass a bipartisan package. He says all the right things, but of course the proof is in the pudding, and so far the bill was written in the Capitol by the Democrats and the White House and all significant Republican amendments are so far being opposed and killed. So that’s not really the actions that would make up a bipartisan process,” he responded.

Newsmax also asked Vitter if Democrats are opposing his and other Republicans attempts to include much bigger tax cuts in the package.

“I think President Obama feels like he’s gone very far in terms of what he has in the bill already and he’s probably right that a bunch of Democrats oppose some of that.”

“My concern about the tax cuts is number one, it’s too little, too small a part of the package. Number two, some of the tax cuts aren’t tax cuts at all, they’re spending programs.”

“They’re tax cuts for people who don’t pay taxes; they’re sending checks to those folks, so that’s not a tax cut,” Vitter points out.

“And number three, they’re one-time rebates. Unfortunately history has proven, including under President Bush, that that just doesn’t work; you need a change of the rates and a more permanent tax cut to have a real solid impact to promote the economy.”

[Editor's Note: See the full interview - go here now.]

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