Look who loves a good federal bailout:
Texas Gov. Rick Perry likes to tell Washington to stop meddling in state affairs. He vocally opposed the Obama administration’s 2009 stimulus program to spur the economy and assist cash-strapped states. Perry also likes to trumpet that his state balanced its budget in 2009, while keeping billions in its rainy day fund. But he couldn’t have done that without a lot of help from … guess where? Washington. Turns out Texas was the state that depended the most on those very stimulus funds to plug nearly 97% of its shortfall for fiscal 2010, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
This is one of the areas in which the political economy of the United States has had its most severe breakdown. Over the past year, conservatives have simultaneously complained about inadequate job growth and excessive public sector employment even though public sector employment has been declining and offsetting private sector job growth. At the same time, conservative state-level politicians who would have been in disastrous shape if not for the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act have been running around the country pretending to believe that it’s a huge burden on them.