The Clarion-Ledger, 3/3/9

Despite Gov. Haley Barbour’s criticisms of the $787 billion stimulus package signed into law by President Barack Obama, Mississippi is expected to accept most of the money the plan would provide the state.

Barbour has indicated he will reject about $50 million of the more than $2.3 billion in stimulus money for the state.

So why the vocal opposition?

Marty Wiseman, head of the Stennis Institute of Government at Mississippi State University, said Barbour’s position on the stimulus is part pragmatism and part politics.

He said Barbour honestly wants to avoid burdening the state with a costly new program related to unemployment benefits. At the same time, the governor was following national Republican Party guidelines in criticizing the stimulus package.