The latest salvo from McDonnell-land is this revisionist desire for the George W. Bush era of economic growth.
President Bush put in a ten-year tax-cut on everything from the death tax to capital gains tax and it was followed by an unprecedented period of economic recovery and economic growth. In fact, it almost overheated the economy through about 2006. So, I think that's the way you stimulate business. And that's the kind of governor that I'm going to be to reduce those impediments to entrepreneurship, to let small businesses grow and thrive and create some opportunity.Just like John McCain before him, Bob McDonnell clearly thinks that the "fundamentals of [Bush's economy was] strong." Of course, Bush's economic growth model almost led to a Great Depression, but don't let that minor detail get in the way of cutting taxes for the wealthiest Virginians!
This failure to acknowledge economic reality is becoming a theme for McDonnell. First, it was his "sort of unemployed" comment, which I described in this post on Blue Commonwealth. To sum it up briefly, McDonnell tried to claim that his family was "feeling a little bit of it as well" because he's "sort of unemployed" given that he recently retired as Attorney General. Of course, he did so to devote time to campaigning and fundraising, which he could do given that he was very much employed (with a healthy salary, I'd bet) by a Virginia Beach law firm. So, this law firm lawyer some how thinks that he's like the many Virginians that are legitimately out of work. Fantasyland.
Next up, McDonnell decided to show he feels Virginians' pain by ... urging the Republicans in the House of Delegates to reject federal stimulus money for certain unemployment benefits. He made some specious claims about the federal government forcing "unfunded mandates" on the Commonwealth, even though nothing in the stimulus bill requires states to continue funding anything after the stimulus money is used up. (More here on McDonnell's non-reality based claims). Again, a disconnect with the economic realities facing the more-than-just-sort-of-unemployed Virginians (not to mention the actual text of federal statutory provisions, which is quite a neat trick by a former Attorney General.)
So, out of touch with Virginian's economic woes and the facts. But pretty much in step with the modern day GOP. Keep an eye on this trait of McDonnell going forward -- he'll be playing fast and loose with the economic facts about everything, even his own economic situation, throughout this campaign.