02/27/2009 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Krugman: Obama Should Ignore "Huffing And Puffing" Stimulus Opponents

Economist Paul Krugman has been somewhat critical of President Obama's stimulus plan. But today in the New York Times he defends the proposal:

As the debate over President Obama's economic stimulus plan gets under way, one thing is certain: many of the plan's opponents aren't arguing in good faith. Conservatives really, really don't want to see a second New Deal, and they certainly don't want to see government activism vindicated. So they are reaching for any stick they can find with which to beat proposals for increased government spending.

Krugman goes on to debunk some of the arguments against the plan -- particularly the idea that tax cuts are inherently superior to new spending. But, he concludes, the critics don't matter much: "Most Americans aren't listening. The most encouraging thing I've heard lately is Mr. Obama's reported response to Republican objections to a spending-oriented economic plan: "I won." Indeed he did -- and he should disregard the huffing and puffing of those who lost."

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) has positioned himself as a leading opponent to Obama's stimulus plan. Both he and House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) pointed to the spending in the bill as the main cause of concern.

The full text of the House stimulus package can be read here.