Everyone knows the economy is still recovering from the worst recession since the Great Depression, but here’s the good news; we know what works. Research on the Obama stimulus package is in; the tax cuts did little to help the recovery while state fiscal relief and infrastructure investment did the most to boost the economy. For the layman this means in a recession government spending works and tax cuts do not.
Conservatives want to argue that increasing government spending only crowds out the private sector and actually hinders the economy. That just isn’t true. As I have pointed out before the slow growth in the economy is due to a lack of demand. This means people are not buying things and there are idle dollars sitting around. The “crowding out” argument can only be used during full employment when all resources are being utilized. This is not our current situation. Government is spending dollars not being spent; it is not taking away dollars from the private sector.
We know government spending works and it does not hurt the private sector, and we know tax cuts in a recession do not work. So what does the GOP want to do? They want to lower taxes and cut government spending. They are demanding these policies because Republicans want to (pre-maturely) shift the main issue from economic recovery to decreasing the national debt. The problem is Republican proposals (the ones that cut taxes and reduce spending) actually increase the debt.
The GOP has become the party that puts ideology before facts. The Republican candidates’ plans solve neither of America’s biggest problems. They want to decrease spending, which will hurt the recovery, and they want to cut taxes, which will have little impact on the recovery, but it will increase the national debt.