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Oh, no: Sen. Mikulski pitches dumb car-loan stimulus again; Update: 71-26, passes

By Michelle Malkin  •  February 3, 2009 04:00 PM

I’m watching Democrat Sen. Barbara Mikulski trying to attach her moronic car-loan stimulus plan again to the Senate version of the Generationl Theft Act of 2009. Doesn’t the auto industry have enough of our money already?

I nominated it for a Dumb Idea of the Day in last November:

Maryland Democrat Sen. Barbara Mikulski just wrapped up her pitch for another temporary stimulus gimmick — short-term tax incentives to car buyers. Unfortunately, she got Missouri GOP Sen. Kit Bond to co-sponsor this $2-3 billion feel-good amendment.

Under the bill she plans to introduce in a coming lame-duck session, interest payments on car loans, and sales and excise taxes would be tax-deductible, Mikulski said. The program, which would apply to new vehicles purchased through the end of 2009, would be part of legislation designed to stimulate the economy.

…Mikulski estimated that under her proposal, buyers of a $25,000 Dodge minivan would save $1,553. The incentives would apply to loans of up to $49,500. Households with incomes above $250,000 would not be eligible.

The estimated the cost of the proposal would be between $2 billion and $3 billion, she said.

Three quick points:

1) Now, these same Democrats who scream about global warming want Americans to buy more cars?

2) If they think these tax incentives are such good ideas, go ahead and make them permanent. Go. Ahead.

3) Spending beyond our means is what got this country into trouble in this first place. This kind of temporary political gimmickry is going to exacerbate the problem. Encouraging people to take out $50,000 car loans before the end of the year when they should be saving their money instead?


The inevitable lard-up continues…

Update 4:02pm Eastern. Good to see Democrat Sen. Max Baucus opposing Mikulski’s amendment, supported by GOP Sen. Kit Bond (ugh!), based on the cost. He says it would cost $11 billion.

Update 5:02pm Eastern. Mikulski amendment passes 71-26. Tack on another $11 billion to the spendulus price tag.

Posted in: fiscal stimulus

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