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South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford today announced he would refuse federal stimulus cash since his request to use some of the money to pay down state debt was rejected by the White House. This is worth noting, not only from the standpoint of the Obama Administration ramming policy down the throat of a state, but also because many in the media have been unfairly jumping on Gov. Sanford of late and calling him a hippocrite for saying he wouldn't take stimulus money and then flipping. Needless to say, this is simply untrue.
A press release issued from the Governor's office read in part:
“We’re obviously disappointed by the White House’s decision, because it cuts against the notion of federalism and the idea of each state having the flexibility to act in a manner that best suits its needs,” Gov. Sanford said. “As a result, we will not be seeking the use of these federal funds for the way they put our state even further into an unconscionable level of debt. If our General Assembly chooses to make use of this federal money, we’d ask them to use existing state resources to begin paying down our state’s sizable liabilities. Now is the time to do so, because it will give us more flexibility in addressing future needs at a state level if this economic downturn is indeed protracted. We simply cannot afford to base 10 percent of our state budget on money that will disappear in two years’ time.”