Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Pelosi-Reid Economy

In January 2007, when Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid took control of Congress, the unemployment rate was 3.8% and the national debt was $466.9 billion. Today, unemployment is 9.8% and the nation is $13 trillion in debt.

Pelosi and Reid have tried to convince voters they inherited all the debt from President Bush, but it was their bailouts, takeovers and power grabs that have blown the budget for years to come. These bills were written by Democrats and made law with Democrat votes.

The only thing that changed when President Obama took office is that the Democrats’ economic agenda went from bad to worse. The Democrats have made the big-spending Republicans they knocked out of power in 2006 look like bean counters.

The first failed stimulus bill written by the Democrats to issue $600 checks so America could go shopping was crowned with the mother of all government handouts when President Obama signed his $787 billion stimulus bill in 2009. The Democrats topped that off with yet another “jobs bill” worth $678 billion, last March. Three stimulus bills and trillions of dollars later, what do American taxpayers have to show for it? Three straight years of job losses.

Stop the Spending. Support the Comeback.

The Pelosi-Reid 2008 stimulus also approved $300 billion in new loans for the Federal Housing Authority for risky, sub prime borrowers and authorized Treasury to start buying shares of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in July 2008.

In the fall of 2008, with an assist from then-presidential candidate Barack Obama who left the campaign trail for Washington to help broker the deal, Democrats wrote the $18.7 trillion TARP bill to bailout banks that couldn’t balance their books because of the trades they made on shaky housing loans.

When Republicans tried to block the second $650 billion installment of the TARP funds from being released in January 2009, the Democrats stopped them, even though there was little accounting for how the first $650 billion was spent. To this day, the public doesn’t know where all the TARP money has gone.

The Obama administration then gave Fannie and Freddie, organizations at the center of the financial meltdown, unlimited access to government coffers on Christmas Eve 2009. Today Fannie and Freddie own or guarantee half the nation’s mortgages, worth about $5.5 trillion. Experts estimate it will take between $889 billion to $1 trillion tax dollars to keep Fannie and Freddie afloat. After all these housing bailouts, more than a million homes are expected to be foreclosed this year–a record high.

The biggest debt bomb, however, didn’t come until 2010. It took the Pelosi-Reid Congress years to write their budget-crushing, 2,300-page health care takeover. When they were done, taxpayers were on the hook for more than $12.6 trillion to pay for the new federal health care entitlement by the year 2023.

Stimulus. TARP. ObamaCare. These three words are being written into the political obituaries of politicians who voted for the programs — for good reason. These three bills, made law by the Pelosi-Reid Congress in only three years, will take decades’ worth of work by regular folks, who dutifully clock in and out of their jobs 40 hours a week or more, to pay off.

In 2006 then-Senate Minority Leader Reid called President Bush and the Republican Congress “the most fiscally irresponsible in the history of our country” and said “no other president or Congress comes close.” That may have been true, until he and Speaker Pelosi took their gavels. Rather than cutting the deficit, they used the spending mistakes of the Bush-era as a license to pile up exponentially more debt.

The day Pelosi became speaker and Reid became leader, the government’s debt was 62% of gross domestic product. In 2012 government debt will be 100% of GDP. When the Obama stimulus bill passed in February 2009, 12.5 million Americans were unemployed. Today, 14.6 million Americans, 2 million more, are looking for work. Even more depressing is the fact that the jobs outlook remains bleak for years to come. The Obama administration’s economic team has forecast that the national unemployment rate will average 9% or higher until 2012.

The high unemployment and debt rates prove Democrats haven’t stimulated the economy. They’ve tranquilized it.

Stop the Job Losses. Support the Comeback.

In a little over three years of the Pelosi-Reid Congress, the number of unemployed has increased by over 2 million, federal spending has increased 25%, our national debt has increased by 122%, and yearly deficits have risen over 550%. Today, 71 cents of every dollar spent by Washington is borrowed from nations like China. The $3.6 trillion in federal spending this year is equal to $84,543 for every American household.

Americans simply cannot afford the Democrats’ agenda any longer. It’s time to enact commonsense policies we know will work. Conservatives will fight to pass a balanced budget amendment, repeal ObamaCare, eliminate wasteful pork-barrel spending, stop the Democrat tax increases and instead enact broad-based permanent tax relief. These are the pro-growth policies that will allow our economy to create long lasting jobs.

Although Obama won’t be on the ballot in November, the Pelosi-Reid economy will. Americans who have lost work as a consequence of their misguided economic plans should put the Democrats out of work, too.

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