Beltway Happenings
January 24, 2006--Stating that "we have to invest in our competitiveness," Gov. Ed Rendell (D-PA) announced the Democratic Governors Association's "America Competes" plan.  The plan would focus more federal resources on energy independence, health care, education, and trade. 

Rendell emphasized that the plan should be seen outside "the narrow spectrum of what's the political motivation."  "It's about helping Americans," Rendell said.  He noted that the National Association of Manufacturers has advocated many of these ideas.  In a letter to President George W. Bush, Rendell and DGA Chair Gov. Bill Richardson (D-NM) wrote that, "We hope that you will incorporate some of our ideas in your upcoming State of the Union address."

Rendell said that some of the components of the plan such as a 17 percent tax credit for companies that provide employees with health insurance and expanding pre-kindergarten will have a cost, but, he said, "We find money when there's a crisis."  Speaking of American competitiveness he said "It's not a good picture, and the trend lines are getting worse."  "We have to wake up," he said. 

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Copyright © 2006  Eric M. Appleman/Democracy in Action