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Recovery – How We Got Here

Posted on by Karina

According to Politico, House Republicans are attempting to claim credit for improvements in the economy:

19 days in, GOP leadership takes credit for job growth

It took less than three weeks for the new Republican Congressional leadership to claim credit for an apparent economic upturn.

An aide to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Brian Patrick, emailed reporters this morning:

THERE ARE THE JOBS: Republicans Prevent Massive Tax Increase, Economy Begins to Improve: U.S. companies plan to hire more workers in the coming months amid growing optimism over the economy, a quarterly survey released Monday showed, providing further evidence that the jobs market is turning around. In the fourth-quarter poll of 84 companies by the National Association for Business Economics found 42% of companies interviewed, ranging from manufacturing to finance, expect to boost jobs in the six months ahead. That’s up from 29% in the first three months of 2010. Only 7% in the latest survey predict they will shed jobs in the coming six months, down from 23% at the start of last year.

The Dow Jones wire story Patrick linked makes no mention of the GOP.

The 111th Congress and President Obama inherited an economic meltdown: 8 million jobs lost—including no net new private sector jobs over 8 years; the national debt had nearly doubled; $17.5 trillion in household wealth had evaporated. In response, Democrats enacted economic recovery initiatives which resulted in the creation of more than 1 million American private sector jobs last year and swinging the country’s economic growth from -6.0% to +2.6%:

Private Sector Job Growth

House Republicans can claim credit for the economy improving just like they can claim credit for the sun rising in the east this morning. Time and again, Congressional Republicans voted against the legislative efforts of Democrats and President Obama to create jobs, bring the economy out of the recession, and forge a new economic foundation for future growth—a few of the bills:

AMERICAN RECOVERY & REINVESTMENT ACTSIGNED INTO LAW

  • 100% OF HOUSE REPUBLICANS VOTED NO
  • Responsible for up to 3.6 million jobs, including teachers, police and firefighters
  • More than a third was tax cuts for 98% of Americans and small businesses
  • Rebuilding America with clean energy and 21st century jobs

HIRING INCENTIVES TO RESTORE EMPLOYMENT (HIRE) ACTSIGNED INTO LAW

  • 97% OF HOUSE REPUBLICANS VOTED NO
  • Will help create 300,000 jobs, unleash tens of billions of dollars to rebuild infrastructure
  • Tax cuts for businesses to hire, accelerated write-offs for small businesses
  • Cracking down on offshore accounts for corporations and the wealthy 

SMALL BUSINESSES JOBS ACTSIGNED INTO LAW

  • 99% OF HOUSE REPUBLICANS VOTED NO
  • Provides new tools to help American small businesses export goods and compete abroad.
  • Projected to create 500,000 jobs.
  • Provides 8 tax cuts for small businesses, totaling $12 billion, to spur investment, growth, access to capital, new starts and hiring.
  • Unleashes up to $300 billion in private sector lending for small businesses.

HEALTH INSURANCE REFORMSIGNED INTO LAW 

PREVENTING OUTSOURCINGSIGNED INTO LAW 

STUDENT AID & FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY ACTSIGNED INTO LAW 

  • 100% OF HOUSE REPUBLICANS VOTED NO
  • Largest investment in college aid in history to make education more affordable
  • Increasing Pell Grants and strengthening community colleges and minority-serving institutions

CASH FOR CLUNKERSSIGNED INTO LAW

WALL STREET REFORMSIGNED INTO LAW

  • 98% OF HOUSE REPUBLICANS VOTED NO
  • A lack of accountability for Wall Street and big banks cost 8 million jobs
  • Common sense new rules to foster the flow of credit to create American jobs
  • Ends taxpayer-funded bailouts and the idea of “too big to fail”
  • Protects & empowers consumers to make sound decisions on homes, credit cards, and other finances

COMPETES ACT REAUTHORIZATIONSIGNED INTO LAW

  • 89% OF HOUSE REPUBLICANS VOTED NO
  • Our innovation agenda—investing in modernizing manufacturing; basic R&D; high risk/high reward clean energy research; and teaching science, technology, engineering and math
  • Keeps our nation on a path to double funding for basic scientific research, crucial to some of our most innovative breakthroughs;
  • Creates jobs with innovative technology loan guarantees for small and mid-sized manufac-turers and Regional Innovation Clusters to expand scientific and economic collaboration;
  • Promotes high-risk high reward research to pioneer cutting edge discoveries through ARPA-E and promotes job creation in clean energy; and
  • Creates the next generation of scientists and entrepreneurs by improving science, math, technology, and engineering education at all levels
  • Supported by U.S. Chamber of Commerce, National Association of Manufacturers, Business Roundtable

And that’s not even counting a myriad other jobs bills like the Disaster Relief and Summer Jobs Act or the Home Star Jobs Act that passed the House (with little to zero Republican support) only to be blocked by Senate Republicans.

As Steve Benen in the Washington Monthly writes:

So to review, Republicans in the Bush era brought the global economy to the brink of catastrophic collapse; Obama and congressional Dems helped turn things around; and now those same Republicans whose policies failed want credit for Democratic successes.

I know some folks will find this persuasive, and maybe even some of these GOP officials have deluded themselves into believing their own rhetoric. But it doesn’t make the argument any less ridiculous.

After spending the last two years opposing economic recovery initiatives, House Republicans have focused on anything but job creation and reducing the deficit for the three weeks they’ve been in charge. Democrats know that we have more work to do and stand ready to work in a bipartisan way to create jobs for the middle class and reduce the deficit. If House Republicans wish to take credit for economic recovery, it would be helpful if they participated in its recovery.

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