Posts tagged Job creation program
Republicans pledged to govern on a platform of job creation after their soaring 2010 midterm election victory. The U.S. economy was clearly in the crapper — the reasons for this are outside the scope of the article — and there needed to be an honest debate on the causes and cures for the economic mess we found ourselves in.
Most analysts agreed that focusing on economic issues was a winner for the Republicans. Whatever one’s feelings on President Obama, and the causes for the current crisis, there is broad agreement amongst Americans of all political stripes that the unemployment rate is too high.
The Republicans say they’re focusing on job creation. On gop.gov, they claim there are 28 “bipartisan job creation” bills awaiting Senate action, not-so-subtly implying that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and the Democrat-“controlled” Senate are holding up key bills. (In reality, with cloture rules, no one party “controls” the Senate, but that’s another story for another day.)
However, when one looks a little beneath the surface, these so-called “job creation” bills are nothing more than naked partisan swipes at the President and Democrats. For example, number two on the Republican’s list is HR 1633, the Farm Dust Regulation Prevention Act of 2011, which prevents the Environmental Protection Agency from making regulations about particulate matter from farms. I suppose a rather tortured case can be made for job creation in this case, but it’s a difficult sell during an election year.
HR 3012 is the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act of 2011. Rather than attempt to improve the educational system in this country, it proposes to lighten visa restrictions on high-tech workers from China (and no other country). While I’m generally in favor of this initiative, I’m having a difficult time connecting the dots so they create a path to the goal of reducing American unemployment.
A careful examination of these “job creation” bills reveals that the vast majority have to do with easing supposedly burdensome government regulations. That may create jobs, but the regulations that are being eased (like farm dust) are small potatoes compared to the number of jobs the economy needs to create.
In the absence of any effective job creation strategy from either side of the aisle — a symptom of the “do-nothing Congress” — Republican presidential candidates have turned to moral issues. Now comes a push by Republicans in Congress on whether employers should be required to provide contraceptive prescriptions, clearly another in their series of important job creation bills.
So it is that this week’s news is about the Big Bad Obama Administration “forcing” health care plans to cover contraceptive services, even when the employer may be morally opposed to contraception. I’d like to examine the likely success of such a strategy. (more…)