Republicans Are Not Sabotaging the Recovery

Because Republicans don’t want to do Democratic policies doesn’t mean they’re sabotaging the economic recovery.

Expect to hear this line more often as the United States move closer to their general election — the American recovery was stalled if not outright sabotaged by opposition Republicans bent on defeating incumbent President Barack Obama. It’s nonsense.

The president, for almost two years, has urged Republicans to do more to support the recovery.

Since they lost their majority in the House of Representatives in the fall of 2010, Democrats haven’t been able to enact the sort of economic “stimulus” measures that they did in the halcyon days of the Obama Administration when more than $800 billion was spent on not so shovel ready jobs that did little to stop unemployment from rising to 10 percent and jobless compensation which did little to sustain consumer demand.

Immediately after their electoral defeat, Democrats started blaming Republicans for their “intransigence” and “obstructionism” because they refused to support Democratic policies — even if Republicans won on fighting just those policies.

The president has used every State of the Union address since to call on Republicans to adopt his spending policies and even convened a special session of Congress in September of last year to push a $447 billion American Jobs Act which Republicans rejected as another reckless experiment in deficit spending.

Obama’s ideas haven’t changed. The Democrat still wants more “investment” in infrastructure and green energy to create jobs. It hasn’t worked.

Republicans don’t just see high unemployment. Through the Obama years, they have never seen a deficit under a trillion dollars. The national debt is now the size of annual economic output. Conservatives believe that a debt crisis is imminent and the federal government should start reining in spending now. They have offered and passed through the House of Representatives two budgets to that effect.

Moreover, Republicans believe that the new rules and regulations enshrined in the financial and health-care reform laws that were enacted in 2010, hundreds of which remain to be written by newly created bureaucracies, inhibit economic activity. Especially small businesses are worried about the rising costs of regulation. And they fear higher taxes. President Obama insists that the wealthy — the sort of people who are able to invest in startup companies — should contribute their “fair share” just as the country is struggling to return to precession growth levels.

What this amounts to is not so much one party trying to sabotage another ahead of an election. It is two political parties with diametrically opposed views on what needs to be done to grow the economy. Isn’t that the point of having different political parties?

Democrats don’t seem to think so. They would rather Republicans line up behind their proposals and stop being so critical (i.e., being an opposition party) which would surely be convenient for them but maybe not so good for the country.