Not sure how this is going to fly with Democrats (read: it’s not), but Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) took to the chamber floor today and, in the middle of a long speech about the importance of bipartisan cooperation in confronting the sunken economy, suggested that the hundreds of billions of dollars expected to go to states as part of an enormous stimulus bill come in the form of loans.
From McConnell’s prepared remarks:
Congressional Democrats have talked about sending hundreds of billions of dollars to the states. If we loan these funds, rather than give them away, states will be far less likely to spend it frivolously. And the taxpayer would have greater assurance their money is well spent.
No word on how states, which are furiously cutting services in the face of enormous budget shortfalls, would be expected to pay back these loans afterward (short, of course, of cutting services). In this context, McConnell’s words sound less like a gesture of bipartisanship than they do a warning to Democrats to cave to GOP demands.