"I want to offer my sincerest congratulations to Governor McDonnell and the General Assembly for the amazing turnaround they've produced in Virginia's bottom line. Just a few short months ago, our budget was deep in the red, and the question from many pundits, and some in the General Assembly, wasn't 'Are taxes going up?' but rather 'How much are taxes going up?' Now, thanks to the leadership of Governor McDonnell, Virginia sits with a more than $400 million surplus.
Unfortunately, the differences between Richmond and Washington never cease to amaze me.
Under the leadership of Governor McDonnell, folks in Richmond reached across the aisle and solved the biggest budget quandary Virginia has faced in modern times. Working together, the General Assembly and Governor McDonnell were able to craft a balanced budget by reducing spending and without raising taxes - and it took exactly one extra legislative day to do it.
Yet, just up I-95, President Obama and Congressional Democrats have yet to even pass a budget for this year and are content to just 'kick the can' further down the road. In these difficult times their 'solution' to our budget issues involves increasing the size and scope of the federal government, escalating the national debt to historic proportions, and hoping that everything will work out in the end. And even with today's news that jobless claims hit 500,000 last week, the Democrats in Washington are planning for a massive tax hike on our families to pay for their ever increasing federal budget.
Our nation's financial situation is perilous. Yet, Congressional Democrats are doing nothing to try and get our fiscal house in order. Friends, that's not leadership.
A few months ago, there were a lot of voices on Capitol Square screaming that the sky was falling, and Virginia was forever doomed to second class status unless taxes went up immediately. Fortunately, under the leadership of Governor McDonnell and General Assembly Members, people came together, ignored those panicked shouts, and instead pursued common-sense strategies to balance our budget without raising taxes.
The end result is something Virginia can be proud of, and should serve as a model for the rest of the nation. Dire financial problems can be solved when leaders are willing to make the tough decisions, not just 'hope' for the best. We can find ways to solve our financial difficulties without picking the pocket of taxpayers if we are willing to make the same tough choices families are having to make every day."