Biden on Stimulus Spending: Avoid the Pork

By Nitya

Mar 18, 2009 4:50pm

ABC News’ Jennifer Duck reports: Today Vice President Joe Biden spoke with the city and county officials from nearly every state overseeing local stimulus spending. His message?  Avoid the pork.  In other words, "No swimming pools.  No tennis courts.  No golf courses.  No Frisbee parks." "It’s got to pass the smell test, folks," Biden said.  "The president and I can’t stop you from doing some things, but I’ll show up in your city and say this is a stupid idea." The Vice President also took a jab at the governors who are opposed to taking stimulus money.  "Last week, we had the governors here — 49 out of 50 showed up, even the states who say that they don’t want the money," Biden said with a laugh. Biden announced on camera a $100 million commitment from the stimulus funds to provide meals for low-income and older Americans.  "While there are more seniors in need, there’s an increasing threat that the programs they depend on are on the brink of reducing their services because they’re being shut down," he said. Biden told the roomful of officials he was flattered the president asked him to take on the role of helping local officials and was maybe a little too honest but genuine when saying, "My ability may not equal my passion." The Vice President even promised to return calls personally and directly.  "You may have to get a phone call back from me from Afghanistan, but I’ll return it," he said.  "I’m not joking.  This is how important this is." "The American people are counting on us," Biden added.  "They’re counting on us to get it right." –Jennifer Duck

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