The Associated Press with Tribune staff reports
On the same day last week that state budget director Chris Atkins announced Indiana would be able to tough out a series of automatic federal budget cuts, Lt. Gov. Sue Ellspermann announced the creation of a new office that will lobby for more federal defense spending.
That dichotomy — saying the federal government is spending too much money, while looking for as much of that money as possible — is old hat around the Indiana Statehouse.
Former Gov. Mitch Daniels wrote a book dubbing unchecked federal spending as the country’s next “red menace” shortly after accepting billions in federal aid with the caveat that he’d be a fool not to take the money if it’s being offered.
Gov. Mike Pence has softened Daniels’ assertion that “government never created a job” to say that “government has never created a job, other than a government job.” But the value of that “government job” is still very much in question.
The almighty federal dollar is one Indiana leaders love to hate, and hate to love.
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