Tom Foley is all bluster and no reality

FI-Letter-to-the-EditorTo the Editor

Put yourself in the shoes of Tom Foley, the presumptive Republican candidate for governor.

His nemesis, Dan Malloy, came to office facing the largest per capita budget deficit in the nation and an economy weakened by the financial crisis of 2008-9 and has guided us to balanced budgets, economic recovery, private sector job growth, debt reduction, smaller government, education initiatives and the implementation of the most successful American Care Act roll-out in the country.

That’s impressive given the size of the problems he inherited and, frankly, I wouldn’t want to be in Mr. Foley’s shoes.

Candidate Foley’s response in a recent news article? Bluster and business. He claims that “the governor and reality diverge.” He references some supposed gap between what we hear from Gov. Malloy and what we “know is really happening.”

What counts for most people is the creation of 59,000 new private sector jobs and unemployment down to 6.9%. The gloom has lifted after the 2008-9 downturn. House prices are out of their trough. It’s morning in Connecticut again. That’s what is “really happening.”

However, Mr. Foley must feel he has more to offer us than incumbent Malloy. The answer would seem to be business. And according to Mr. Foley, business in Connecticut is lousy — a CNBC survey says so. Trouble is the survey places four old Confederate states at the top of the list as great places to “do business.” This is hardly credible.

Foley’s improvement plan is not spelled out but it doesn’t need to be. We know it will be the familiar Republican themes of lower taxes and less regulation even though no reputable economic study has ever established the correlation between these factors and economic growth. The fact is that business taxes are lower in Connecticut than in any of the contiguous states and New Jersey. And when it comes to regulation I can cite my own experience as a business owner and entrepreneur that Connecticut is a great place to do business.

Back to the drawing board, Mr. Foley: less empty rhetoric please and give us some serious business ideas.


John Blankley

The author is a member of the Greenwich Board of Estimate and Taxation.

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