On Meet The Press David Gregory tried to sow some Democratic discord with the Republican talking point that Obama is a big spending liberal, but he was shot down by Gov. Jerry Brown (D-CA).
DAVID GREGORY: I wanted to get your views for a minute on the big politics of the day. First of all, you’re running for your fourth term as governor. You’re very popular. You took a state that a lot of people felt was ungovernable, chiefly because of the budget deficit, and now there is a surplus. Is there a national leadership lesson that California provides?
GOVERNOR JERRY BROWN: Well, you’ve got to be tough on spending. No matter how liberal you want to be, at the end of the day, fiscal discipline is the fundamental predicate of a free society. And you just have to maintain that. Secondly, you do have to find a way to create a governing consensus, a coalition.
In California, we do have a majority Democratic party. And we don’t have any constitutional blocking points like the 60-vote requirement in the Senate or the division of parties between the House and the Senate. So if you want–
DAVID GREGORY: But it is interesting, isn’t it, that is there a lesson for President Obama? No matter how liberal you are, you said, “Here the president’s about to present a budget where he’s saying, ‘Look, the deficits are coming down, at least for now, we’ve got to spend more. And we’re only going to get the economy going in a meaningful way if we spend more on infrastructure and the like.'”
GOVERNOR JERRY BROWN: Well, yeah. Spend more. But in the framework of adjusting your long-term liabilities so we’re in balance. So that’s not inconsistent. You can invest and create jobs. But over the long term, your revenue has to meet your liabilities. And that’s not the case today.
David Gregory was pushing the myth that President Obama is a tax and spend liberal. Gov. Brown was correct. The nation can spend money on things that grow the economy and create jobs. When the economy grows, federal tax revenues increase, and budget surpluses can be created. Bill Clinton showed exactly how this can be done during his two terms in office.
It is not inconsistent with sound economic policy for the president to call for more spending if that spending will help to balance the books in the long term.
David Gregory was trying to create some division among Democrats while pushing another bogus falsehood about the policies of this president. Gregory is directly repeating Republican talking points, and he seems to have no idea of what he is talking about.
Brown’s insistence on reality is why Democrats don’t get to hold center stage on the Sunday shows very often. If more Democrats were on programs like Meet The Press, Gregory would not be able to get away with lazily passing off Republican attacks as facts.
Meet The Press deserves a moderator that will focus on facts. David Gregory and his Republican fictions need to be sent packing.
Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association