March 13, 2009
The United States faces a Zimbabwe-style economic collapse if it keeps “spending a bunch of money we don’t have,” South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford said Wednesday.
[efoods]Sanford, a Republican, has been an outspoken critic of the Obama administration’s $800 billion stimulus plan. He said he’ll turn down about a quarter of his state’s $2.8 billion share unless Washington lets him use that money to pay down debt.
“What you’re doing is buying into the notion that if we just print some more money that we don’t have and send it to different states, we’ll create jobs,” he said. “If that’s the case, why isn’t Zimbabwe a rich place?”
Zimbabwe has been in the throes of an economic meltdown ever since the southern African nation embarked on a chaotic land reform program. Its official inflation rate topped 11 million percent in 2008, with its treasury printing banknotes in the trillion-dollar range to keep up with the plummeting value of its currency.
But with South Carolina’s unemployment rate now the second-highest in the country, state lawmakers will attempt to override Sanford and take the $700 million if he turns it down, Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer said.