Sens. Chambliss, Isakson share insights during Chronicle visit

Friday, May 1, 2009 5:40 PM
Last updated 9:01 PM
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Georgia’s two U.S. senators spoke with The Augusta Chronicle today, giving their insight into national hot button issues and stating where they stand on them.

Sens. Saxby Chambliss and Johnny Isakson, both Republicans, addressed the economy, the state of the Republican party, the direction of the country and President Obama’s first 100 days, among other issues.

Here are their responses to some of the issues posed by The Chronicle:

President Obama’s first 100 days:

Everyone knew what Mr. Obama wanted to do when he ran for president, Mr. Isakson said.

“I don’t think anybody in Washington expected him to put all of it on the table in the first 90 days,” he said, adding concerns about some of the actions the president has taken. “Government does a lot of things well. Running a business isn’t one of them.”

His concerns extended to Mr. Obama’s budget, especially with the backdrop of the nation’s growing debt compared to its gross domestic product.

“It taxes too much, it spends too much and it borrows too much,” Mr. Isakson said of the budget.

His colleague shared the concerns, pointing to the $897 billion stimulus package as an example of ill-advised spending.

Mr. Chambliss also said the president’s mantra of change hasn’t always been apparent, especially when it comes to his cabinet members, which includes lobbyists and some who hadn’t paid taxes when they were nominated.

The direction the country is headed:

Constituent calls to Mr. Chambliss’ office have usually involved the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, but a significant number is now about the direction of the country, the senator said. The actions of today are drastically shaping the country’s future.

“We’re going to be an entirely different country than any American has ever seen before,” he said.

Both senators agreed that the April 15 Tea Parties held throughout the nation are representative of the frustrations of average people.

Mr. Chambliss said it will interesting to see how the movement evolves.

“I think there was a lot of pent up frustration and anger that is still there,” he said. “I think there is going to be a lot more anger the longer this goes.”

Economic stimulus:

“It is in no way creating jobs,” Mr. Chambliss said, adding that the money won’t be there after two years to sustain any job creation.

Mr. Isakson said the stimulus money will increase funding for programs, but will not increase jobs.

The stimulus packages in the past haven’t improved the economy and have actually made conditions worse, he said. President Bush tried it, and it didn’t work.

Mr. Chambliss said the health of the economy hinges on fixing the housing market, and without making those repairs the economy will never recover.

State of the Republican party:

Mr. Chambliss said Republicans need to establish an agenda to move forward.

“Right now, I can’t tell you what our agenda is, and I’m right in the middle of it,” he said.

But the Democratic majority in Congress isn’t solid, the senator said, adding that Democrats up for re-election might begin voting against their party.

Despite the perception portrayed in the media, Mr. Isakson said Republicans aren’t the “party of 'No.’”

“This business of we’re the party of 'No’ is wrong,” Mr. Isakson said, listing Republican proposals, including ways to address the housing market and ways to stimulate the economy.

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TrukinRanger 05/01/09 - 07:01 pm


Niko Mahs
Niko Mahs 05/01/09 - 07:56 pm
"Right now I can't tell you

"Right now I can't tell you what our agenda is, and I'm right in the middle of it" Saxby Chambliss. Hey Zaxby, got any hot wings or brains for that matter? And Johnny let's hear more yes votes and then I might begin to believe what you're saying!

Rose 05/01/09 - 08:26 pm
I don't trust either one of

I don't trust either one of them. Leave it to AC to sit down to tea with those two fakes.

gus0426 05/01/09 - 10:52 pm
All 3 of you - at least they

All 3 of you - at least they are not the party of Comrade Barry!

patriciathomas 05/02/09 - 12:53 am
It's their job to be the

It's their job to be the party of "no" when the opposition is pushing liberal laws. I don't hear enough no's out of these two. I don't hear conservative leadership out of these two. I don't see any difference between these two and the typical D.C. politician that is busy increasing their wealth and ignoring the country. These two could have a D or R after their name and it wouldn't change their influence on congress. They need to be replaced by two Newt Gingrichs.

dmcadam 05/02/09 - 07:45 am
I love the quotes of our

I love the quotes of our senators. Their statments are nearly empty of substance.

Chambliss: "“We’re going to be an entirely different country than any American has ever seen before,”

News flash Saxby, this is the USA, we are constantly reinventing ourselves. Ten years ago most people had no idea how rapidly computers, the internet, cell phones and other technology would profoundly affect our lives.

dmcadam 05/02/09 - 07:53 am
Isakson is trying real hard

Isakson is trying real hard to resurect his image as a moderate. If he hadn't caved in to the stupidity of the past several years of Bush, he'd be in much better shape to run for re-election.

As it is, he has to overcome his support of torture, illegal wiretaps, a war based on lies, and a free-market ideology that ran our economy into the ditch.

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