Romney’s… I Mean McCain’s… Wait I Mean Bush’s 5 Point Plan.
I’ve been travelling recently and haven’t had much time to make a post so I thought while I’m still out-of-town I would mention this – previously reported but interesting nonetheless.
What Romney’s 5 point economic plan looks like to me is a set of political talking points that has been a staple of the Republican platform for quite some time. I have less confidence that this is what Romney or his economic advisors “thought up” – and more likely it is what campaign members have picked up from focus groups and have recycled over the past two presidential elections.
Lets look at Romney’s 5-point economic plan:
1). Achieve energy independence on this continent by 2020. America is blessed with extraordinary natural resources, and developing them will create millions of good jobs – not only in the energy industry, but also in industries like manufacturing that will benefit from more energy at lower prices.
2). Trade that works for America.
3). Provide Americans with the skills to succeed through better public schools, better access to higher education, and better retraining programs that help to match unemployed workers with real-world job opportunities.
4). Cut the deficit, reducing the size of government and getting the national debt under control so that America remains a place where businesses want to open up shop and hire.
5). Champion small business. Small businesses are the engine of job creation in this country, but they will struggle to succeed if taxes and regulations are too burdensome or if a government in Washington does its best to stifle them. Mitt will pursue comprehensive tax reform that lowers tax rates for all Americans, and he will cut back on the red tape that drives up costs and discourages hiring.
Point 1: Drill oil
Point 2: Improving trade (this is a very vague 2nd point)
Point 3: Improve the educational system and retraining for job replacement
Point 4: Reduce spending
Point 5: Lower taxes and regulations
Let’s look at McCain’s 5 point economic plan:
1). I will open new markets to our goods and services. My opponent will close them.
2). I will cut government spending. He will increase it.
3). Education — education is the civil rights issue of this century. Equal access to public education has been gained, but what is the value of access to a failing school? We need to shake up failed school bureaucracies with competition, empower parents with choice.
4). We all know that keeping taxes low helps small businesses grow and create new jobs.
5). We’ll attack — we’ll attack the problem on every front. We’ll produce more energy at home. We will drill new wells off-shore, and we’ll drill them now. We’ll drill them now.
Point 1: Improve trade (be reducing tariffs)
Point 2: Reduce spending
Point 3: Improve the educational system
Point 4: Lower taxes
Point 5: Drill oil
Sound familiar? Lets look at Bush’s 5 point economic plan:
1). To create jobs, my plan will encourage investment and expansion by restraining federal spending, reducing regulation and making the tax relief permanent.
2). To create jobs, we will make our country less dependent on foreign sources of energy.
3). To create jobs, we will expand trade and level the playing field to sell American goods and services across the globe.
4). And we must protect small-business owners and workers from the explosion of frivolous lawsuits that threaten jobs across our country. Another drag on our economy is the current tax code, which is a complicated mess…
5). To be fair, there are some things my opponent is for. He’s proposed more than $2 trillion in new federal spending so far, and that’s a lot, even for a senator from Massachusetts.
Point 1: Reduce spending and taxes
Point 2: Drill oil
Point 3: Improve trade (reduce tariffs)
Point 4: Lower taxes and regulation
Point 5: Cut spending
Here is Romney, McCain, Bush side by side:
Point 1: Drill Oil, Drill Oil, Drill Oil
Point 2: Improve trade, Improve Trade (reduce tariffs), Improve Trade (reduce tariffs)
Point 3: Improve educational system and retraining for job replacement, Improve the educational system, None
Point 4: Reduce spending, Reduce spending, Reduce spending and taxes (Cut spending)
Point 5: Lower taxes and regulations, Lower taxes, Lower taxes and regulation
Does it sound like you just read the same thing three times – then three times again? It’s because you did.
Romney’s 5 point economics plan is a rehashed plan from the Bush years that has been recycled in both Republican general election attempts since 2004. It is a political plan, not an economic plan. The plan is so terribly vague and void of specifics that focus groups love it, the problem is it doesn’t provide anything new.