America Needs A President Who Is Smart And Experienced Enough To Turn This Economy Around
The Omaha World Herald recently endorsed Mitt Romney for President contending that Romney could break the partisan gridlock, reduce the deficit, and improve the economy. The World Herald's endorsement shouldn't come as a surprise to anybody since that newspaper has always endorsed the GOP Presidential nominee - including George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004. Are the World Herald's claims about a potential Romney Presidency credible? Do they stand up to any scrutiny?
The World Herald began the editorial by cherry picking economic statistics in a deceptive way that leaves out the historical context.
Contrary to the World Herald's piece, history didn't start this month.
When President Obama took office, the economy was losing 700,000 jobs per month. Over the last 2.5 years, the economy has created 5.2 million new private sectors jobs. Since October 2011, the economy has created 150,000 new jobs per month.
Other economic measures have turned around. GDP shrank 8.9% in the last quarter of 2008. Over the last 2.5 years, GDP has grown around 1.5% to 2% per quarter. The World Herald also failed to mention the stock market. When President Obama took office, the Dow Jones was around 8,000. At the present time, the Dow is around 13,000 and nearing a five year high.
Yes, there is still more work to do and things need to get better.
However, it is beyond dispute that we're all better off now than we were four years ago. But can Romney improve on this performance? Is there anything in his proposals and background that would give us any confidence he could break the gridlock and improve the economy?
Sadly, the answers to these questions are no. It is seldom mentioned that Romney is the least experienced major party nominee since Wendell Wilkie in 1940. Romney's only experience in government was his four years as Governor of Massachusetts. The New York Times recently reported that Romney neither mastered the art of reaching across the aisle nor achieved success as governor. Apparently, Romney's relations with Democrats in the Massachusetts Legislature were acrimonious at times. By the time Romney left office in Massachusetts that state ranked 47th out of 50 states in job creation. Moreover, Romney's approval rating had sunk as low as 35%.
Romney's current economic proposals would be as ineffectual as his economic plans were in Massachusetts. The GOP nominee's economic plan largely consists of a 20% across the board tax cut that favors the wealthy and the deregulation of big business - including Wall Street. Romney has yet to tell us how he would pay for his tax cuts and projected defense spending increases. Independent economic analysts have indicated that Romney's plans would add an additional $500 billion to the deficit on an annual basis.
The former Massachusetts Governor's economic plans would also fail to reduce unemployment. According to Mark Hopkins, a senior adviser at Moody's Analytics, Romney's policies would "do more harm in the short term. If we implemented all of his policies, it would push us deeper into recession and make the recovery slower." Hopkins also said that "lowering corporate tax rates and the marginal tax rate on high income earners would have little impact on short term job growth. Cutting these taxes won't solve the problem of weak demand."
The World Herald editorial called for a President who is smart and experienced enough to turn this economy around. What they didn't mention is that President Barack Obama is that "smart and experienced President." As we've discussed here, President Obama has already turned around the economy and has plans to make it even better.
President Obama's American Jobs Act would create 2 million new jobs and reduce the unemployment rate to 7%. Unfortunately, the Republican controlled House won't allow an up or down vote on this promising plan. We Democrats need to end the job killing gridlock in Washington, D.C. by re-electing President Obama and sending our excellent slate of Congressional candidates to Washington, D.C.
Dennis Crawford is our newly elected 2nd Associate Chair. He will begin serving his term on the NDP's executive board at the first State Central Committee meeting following November's election. Thank you to Dennis for his contribution to the NDP's blog.