In case you missed it, Christie Vilsack came out against government efficiency on her government efficiency tour, which continues across Iowa’s 4th Congressional District today. Vilsack read prepared remarks stating she was opposed to a proposed USDA rule that would save taxpayer dollars and make poultry inspections more efficient.
The “poultry slaughter rule” was proposed by the USDA to modernize the poultry slaughter inspection system. The rule would allow USDA inspectors more flexibility to patrol the processing plant to ensure the plant is meeting food performance standards.
The Des Moines Register reported Christie Vilsack was put into a contrary position by coming out against her husband, USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack, who is attempting to save money and increase the speed of the inspection process by privatizing poultry inspectors.
I don’t blame Iowans in the 4th District for being confused by Christie Vilsack’s opposition to government efficiency while she is promoting her government efficiency plan. This is yet another example of Christie Vilsack trying to duck issues and have it both ways. Iowans in the 4th District deserve to know whether Vilsack is for saving taxpayer dollars, as her tour claims, or if this is another issue she’d rather Iowans not know her true position.
Christie Vilsack says she understands the burdens of our national debt, but her opposition to saving the taxpayers’ hard-earned money tells me she wants to continue down the President’s path of raising our debt ceiling and spending money we don’t have.
Christie Vilsack wasn’t done there. Multiple media outlets reported she continued to duck questions on issues and give vague answers on policy that matters to the 4th District.
When asked about the assertion, Vilsack said, as she has before, that she would not say how she would have voted on an issue, such as health care reform or the stimulus package, had she been in Congress at the time.
“I don’t think it makes sense to go back and replay something,” Vilsack said. “I’m happy to talk about my frame of mind, or what I’m thinking, but I don’t think I can literally tell you how I would have voted on something. … I can’t help it that I don’t have a record and Steve King does.”
When asked if she favored the proposed Buffet Rule, which would eliminate tax incentives typically available to wealthy Americans, Vilsack said, “Everybody needs to pay their fair share. We need to make sure the middle class doesn’t bear the burden.”
When asked if that was a yes or no, she laughed and said, “That’s my answer.”
When asked about the President’s stimulus package that added to the national debt Christie Vilsack said, “Well I, you know, I don’t think it makes sense to go back and replace something, I wasn’t in Congress then…”
When WHO’s Dave Price asked Vilsack about raising taxes, Vilsack responded, “Well I think that everyone needs to pay their fair share.”
Price followed up by asking if that was a “yes” or a “no.” Vilsack fired back, “That’s my answer.”
Vilsack has been criticized by Republicans lately including Steve King, R-Kiron, who she will face in November, for dodging answers to questions like how she would have voted on Barack Obama’s health care plan. When reporters asked her about those criticisms, Vilsack said she only felt comfortable explaining her frame of mind, but not how she would have voted, because it’s not possible to know since she wasn’t in Congress at the time.
“I’m happy to talk about generally how I think on an issue,” Vilsack said.
At a press conference later in the day, Christie Vilsack said she agreed with the sentiment, but she also said she didn’t know enough to commit to a position.
Jimmy Centers is the Communications Director for the Steve King for Congress Campaign