NRCC Attacks Rep. Nye With Groundless Claims

October 28, 2010 2:21 pm ET

In a new ad titled "Clout," the NRCC once again attacks Rep. Glenn Nye (D-VA) for supporting legislation that allegedly failed to create jobs in Virginia, and makes the misleading suggestion that Nye is responsible for the relocation of a Virginia-based aircraft carrier to Florida. However, that decision isn't finalized, and Nye actually inserted a provision into FY2011 Defense Authorization Bill that would block funding to move the carrier. The ad also pretends that the Recovery Act caused Virginia unemployment to jump 14 percent, but since July 2009, when Recovery Act spending began to affect the economy, unemployment has fallen by approximately 1.3 percent in the state. In Virginia and around the country, the bill succeeded in saving and creating millions of jobs and helped avert another depression. 

NRCC: "Clout"

Glenn Nye's clout. Nye promised he would use his clout in Congress to keep the aircraft carriers in Norfolk. But the Defense Department announced they're moving a carrier to Florida. Losing a carrier could cost Virginia 11,000 jobs we can't afford to lose. Now that Nye and Nancy Pelosi passed the stimulus our unemployment is up 14 percent and we may lose 11,000 more jobs. Glenn Nye — no clout. The National Republican Congressional Committee is responsible for the content of this advertising.

Relocation Of Aircraft Carrier "Is Not A Done Deal"

The NRCC's ad cites a February 2, 2010 Virginia Pilot article to claim that the Defense Department announced its decision to relocate a Norfolk-based aircraft carrier to Mayport, Florida. In reality, Nye got a provision added to the 2011 Defense Authorization Bill that would prevent the move. There has yet to be a final decision regarding the relocation, and the carrier remains stationed in Virginia.

Proposed Carrier Move Is Currently Slated For 2019. According to

Reports from two Virginia lawmakers that the transfer of one carrier from Norfolk, Va., to Mayport, Fla., has been delayed five years to 2019 are not accurate, and that 2019 has been the goal for more than a year, a Navy spokesman said.

"The Navy is committed to using Mayport as a second nuclear carrier homeport," service spokesman Lt. Paul Macapagal said. "But that will not happen before the completion of required military construction projects there."

[, 4/28/10]

Nye Inserted A Provision Into FY2011 Defense Authorization Bill That Would Block Funding To Relocate The Carrier. The Washington Post's "Virginia Politics" blog reported:

But Nye has pushed back hard. He inserted a provision into the defense authorization bill for 2011 that would block funding for moving a carrier to Florida. (The bill has passed the House and now awaits action in the Senate.) Nye's campaign is touting a letter he received in June from Gov. Robert McDonnell (R) thanking Nye for his "leadership on behalf of the Commonwealth of Virginia" on the carrier issue.

[Washington Post, 8/10/10]

Sen. Webb (D-VA): "This Is Not A Done Deal." As reported by the Virginia Pilot:

Whether the Navy is successful may come down to a nasty fight in Congress, say some Virginia legislators, who argue the military hasn't provided any solid research to justify the relocation.

"This is not a done deal," U.S. Sen. Jim Webb, D-Va., said Monday. "I would be curious to see where the Navy believes that it can take a billion dollars away from shipbuilding, weapons procurement, ship maintenance and repair, and building a fleet in order to construct an alternate port which, on all accounts, doesn't seem to be needed."

[Virginia Pilot, 2/2/10]

Rep. Forbes (R-VA): "Almost Every Independent Analysis" Shows "That This Is A Poor Decision By The Navy." According to the Virginia Pilot:

Several Virginia members of Congress said Monday that despite the Navy's claim that Hampton Roads carries a higher risk of terrorist attack, accident or disaster, the military has not provided any classified or unclassified analysis to back their statement.nor

"What we have constantly come back to is the realization from almost every independent analysis that this is a poor decision by the Navy - if not a scandalous decision," said U.S. Rep. Randy Forbes, R-4th District, which includes Portsmouth and Chesapeake.

[Virginia Pilot, 2/2/10]

Rep. Nye Has Asked The GAO To Evaluate The Relocation Effort. From the Virginia Pilot:

Given the recession, said U.S. Rep. Glenn Nye, D-2nd District, which includes Virginia Beach and part of Norfolk, the state's delegation will press the Navy to explain how it can afford the Mayport project "particularly at a time when we've seen the administration propose the smallest pay increase for our armed forces in many decades."

Nye said he has asked the Government Accountability Office to examine the relocation effort.

[Virginia Pilot, 2/2/10]

Actually, Virginia Unemployment Is DOWN Since Recovery Act Spending Reached The Economy

President Obama's Policies Did Not Affect The Economy Until July 2009. According to economist Robert J. Shapiro: "From December 2007 to July 2009 - the last year of the Bush second term and the first six months of the Obama presidency, before his policies could affect the economy - private sector employment crashed from 115,574,000 jobs to 107,778,000 jobs." [, 8/10/10]

Virginia Unemployment Actually FELL By Approximately 1.3 Percent Since July 2009. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Virginia had seasonally adjusted unemployment of 288,446 in July 2009. In September 2010, the latest data available, Virginia had preliminary unemployment of 284,728. That amounts to approximately a 1.3 percent drop. [Bureau of Labor Statistics, accessed 10/15/10]

Virginia's Unemployment Rate Has Fallen Since July 2009. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Virginia's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in July 2009 was 6.9 percent. In September 2010, the latest data available, the preliminary unemployment rate was 6.8 percent. [Bureau of Labor Statistics, accessed 10/15/10]

The Recovery Act Boosted The Economy And Prevented Further Job Losses

The Economy Shed Almost 8 Million Jobs Under Republican Policies Before The Recovery Act Could Affect The Economy. According to economist Robert J. Shapiro:

From December 2007 to July 2009 - the last year of the Bush second term and the first six months of the Obama presidency, before his policies could affect the economy - private sector employment crashed from 115,574,000 jobs to 107,778,000 jobs. Employment continued to fall, however, for the next six months, reaching a low of 107,107,000 jobs in December of 2009. So, out of 8,467,000 private sector jobs lost in this dismal cycle, 7,796,000 of those jobs or 92 percent were lost on the Republicans' watch or under the sway of their policies. Some 671,000 additional jobs were lost as the stimulus and other moves by the administration kicked in, but 630,000 jobs then came back in the following six months. The tally, to date: Mr. Obama can be held accountable for the net loss of 41,000 jobs (671,000 - 630,000), while the Republicans should be held responsible for the net losses of 7,796,000 jobs. [, 8/10/10, emphasis added]

Based on Shapiro's research, the Washington Post's Ezra Klein created the following chart showing net job losses before and after the Recovery Act was enacted:


[Washington Post8/12/10]

CBO: The Recovery Act Created Jobs, Lowered Unemployment, And Boosted GDP. According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, through the second quarter of 2010, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act:

  • Raised the level of real (inflation-adjusted) gross domestic product (GDP) by between 1.7 percent and 4.5 percent,
  • Lowered the unemployment rate by between 0.7 percentage points and 1.8 percentage points,
  • Increased the number of people employed by between 1.4 million and 3.3 million, and
  • Increased the number of full-time-equivalent (FTE) jobs by 2.0 million to 4.8 million compared with what those amounts would have been otherwise.

[CBO, 8/24/10]

Reuters: The Recovery Act May Have "Prevented The Sluggish Economy From Contracting" Between April And June. According to Reuters

The massive U.S. stimulus package put millions of people to work and boosted national output by hundreds of billions of dollars in the second quarter, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said on Tuesday.

CBO's latest estimate indicates that the stimulus effort, which remains a political hot potato ahead of the November congressional elections, may have prevented the sluggish U.S. economy from contracting between April and June.

CBO said President Barack Obama's stimulus boosted real GDP in the quarter by between 1.7 percent and 4.5 percent, adding at least $200 billion in economic activity. [Reuters via ABC News, 8/24/10]

Job Statistics Trend Shows Recovery Act Is Working. Below is a graph prepared by the Speaker's office showing net private sector job gains or losses per month since December 2007.


[Bureau of Labor Statistics via The Gavel, 10/8/10]

Princeton, Moody's Economists Say "Highly Effective" Government Response To Crisis Saved 8.5 Million Jobs. According to the New York Times: "Like a mantra, officials from both the Bush and Obama administrations have trumpeted how the government's sweeping interventions to prop up the economy since 2008 helped avert a second Depression. Now, two leading economists wielding complex quantitative models say that assertion can be empirically proved. In a new paper, the economists argue that without the Wall Street bailout, the bank stress tests, the emergency lending and asset purchases by the Federal Reserve, and the Obama administration's fiscal stimulus program, the nation's gross domestic product would be about 6.5 percent lower this year. In addition, there would be about 8.5 million fewer jobs, on top of the more than 8 million already lost; and the economy would be experiencing deflation, instead of low inflation. The paper, by Alan S. Blinder, a Princeton professor and former vice chairman of the Fed, and Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Analytics, represents a first stab at comprehensively estimating the effects of the economic policy responses of the last few years. 'While the effectiveness of any individual element certainly can be debated, there is little doubt that in total, the policy response was highly effective,' they write." [New York Times7/27/10, emphasis added]