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According to the Associated Press, President Obama is currently working on a plan that he hopes will increase job creation before the November elections. The bill, which will cost taxpayers at least $50 billion, will focus mainly on infrastructure. The AP reports:
The goals of the infrastructure plan include: rebuilding 150,000 miles of roads; constructing and maintaining 4,000 miles of railways, enough to go coast-to-coast; and rehabilitating or reconstructing 150 miles of airport runways, while also installing a new air navigation system designed to reduce travel times and delays.
The President will also call for increased bureaucracy and red tape as he hopes to set up "a permanent infrastructure bank that would focus on funding national and regional infrastructure projects."
The Democrats made infrastructure spending one of the key elements of their near-trillion dollar stimulus package. Remember the promise that "shovel ready" jobs would be an essential part of the 3.5 million jobs that it was supposed to create in the first year alone? Now, with unemployment at 9.6 percent and job creation lagging, it is becoming abundantly clear that their spending bill has failed. And, in typical Washington fashion, Democrats are looking to throw even more taxpayer money at the problem.
Rather than continue the policies that have exacerbated joblessness--the unemployment rate has been above 9 percent for over a year-- Democrats need to focus on proven job creators. One such fundamental economic strategy is to ensure that tax levels do not increase. According to J.D. Foster of the Heritage Foundation:
The Administration needs to abandon its attachment to the Obama tax hikes—the expiration of the most economically important elements of the 2001 and 2003 tax provisions. Allowing any of these tax provisions to expire at the end of the year is irresponsible economic policy. It is also unnecessary as a matter of fiscal policy, as projected deficits are the result of excess spending, not a dearth of revenues. Cutting spending back to historical levels is all that is necessary to get budget deficits under control.
Increasing taxes in the middle of a recession isn't merely foolish fiscal policy. It is a move that will undoubtedly raise unemployment levels and leave millions of Americans jobless for years to come. As Foster points out:
Such an indefensible economic policy under current conditions sends a strong signal to families and businesses alike: Either the President is completely lost at sea when it comes to economic policy or he is willing to put his big-government, high-tax ideology above the need for job creation.
If a new, deficit-increasing "jobs bill" is passed in place of the tax cuts that the American people want and desperately need, then the Democrats’ message will be clear: winning elections because of a short-term job increase is more important to them than the long-term sustainability of the American economy.