Today we have two articles which delve into a disturbing possibility which has developed over the past 3 1/2 years. Has the Republican Party purposefully sabotaged the economic recovery from the Great Recession for no other reason but to regain power? It’s a tough question to answer definitively and is hard to believe all members of the party would subscribe to prioritizing the attainment of the presidency over the needs of average Americans amidst such an economic crisis. However, it’s just as difficult to dismiss such an accusation given the actions witnessed since the Obama presidency began. From the national GOP leaders inauguration evening adoption of a strategy to oppose everything put forth by the Administration to their subsequent, consistent opposition to middle class tax cuts, small business support legislation and anything stimulative in nature to record senatorial filibusters, the trend which has developed speaks volumes. It speaks to a coordinated effort to essentially disrupt economic recovery to ensure a Republican victory in 2012.
Did Republicans deliberately crash the US economy?
So why does the US economy stink?
Why has job creation in America slowed to a crawl? Why, after several months of economic hope, are things suddenly turning sour? The culprits might seem obvious – uncertainty in Europe, an uneven economic recovery, fiscal and monetary policymakers immobilized and incapable of acting. But increasingly, Democrats are making the argument that the real culprit for the country’s economic woes lies in a more discrete location: with the Republican Party.
In recent days, Democrats have started coming out and saying publicly what many have been mumbling privately for years – Republicans are so intent on defeating President Obama for re-election that they are purposely sabotaging the country’s economic recovery. These charges are now being levied by Democrats such as Senate majority leader Harry Reid and Obama’s key political adviser, David Axelrod.
For Democrats, perhaps the most obvious piece of evidence of GOP premeditated malice is the 2010 quote from Senate minority leader, Mitch McConnell:
GOP Blocks More Than 1 Million Jobs for an Entire Year
Today is the day we got the monthly jobs report, which unfortunately did not meet expectations. But today is also important for a related reason — it’s the one year anniversary of the introduction of the American Jobs Act, a vital jobs bill that Republicans have been blocking since day one.
The plan included stimulus spending in the form of immediate infrastructure investments, tax credits for working Americans and employers to encourage consumer spending and job growth, and efforts to shore up state and local budgets to prevent further layoffs of teachers, firefighters, police officers, and other public safety officials.
ThinkProgress’ Travis Waldron explains just how much the bill would’ve done if Republicans hadn’t repeatedly voted it down in the Senate and refused to even take it up the House:
–Moody’s Analytics estimated the American Jobs Act would create 1.9 million jobs and add two percent to gross domestic product.
–The Economic Policy Institute estimated it would create 2.6 million jobs and protect an addition 1.6 million existing jobs.
–Macroeconomic Advisers predicted it would create 2.1 million jobs and boost GDP by 1.5 percent.
–Goldman Sachs estimated it would add 1.5 percent to GDP.
The American economy has continued to recover since the American Jobs Act failed. But growth could have been faster: the public sector shed 7,000 jobs in August, adding to the more 700,000 it has lost since 2009. That includes hundreds of thousands of teachers and educators, firefighters, and police officers. Had the public sector spent the last three years growing at its previous rate, unemployment would be at least a full point lower than it is now.