Can business NOT afford Jim DeMint?
Steve Pearlstein, the Post business columnist, launches an attack on Jim DeMint in today's paper, asking, "Can business afford Jim DeMint?" The crux of Pearlstein's argument is that if Republicans are elected they will produce gridlock on Capitol Hill and stop the Obama administration from imposing its big-government agenda. Writes Pearlstein:
The good news, of course, is that you won't have to spend a minute over the next two years worrying about tax increases or climate-change legislation or that odious card check idea that would open the doors again to union organizing. The bad news is that you can kiss goodbye tax reform, education reform, infrastructure investment or any new trade treaties.
Has it occurred to Pearlstein that American businesses may care more about stopping tax increases, stopping a massive new energy tax that would raise energy prices for enterprises large and small across America, and stopping card-check legislation that could kill up to 4.5 million jobs and result in over $500 billion in lost output and income than they do about liberal priorities such as "tax reform" (read: tax increases), "education reform" (read: government intervention and spending) and "infrastructure investment" (read: a second stimulus)?
As for the charge that if Republicans are elected business can "kiss goodbye… any new trade treaties," this is laughable. Despite controlling the largest congressional majorities in decades, Obama and the Democrats failed for almost two years to lift a finger to enact free-trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea that are sitting before Congress today. Does Pearlstein blame Jim DeMint for this as well?
Pearlstein also argues that a Republican victory will lead to "regulatory uncertainty" as "the Obama administration tries to do through regulation what it will no longer be able to achieve through legislation." So it will be Jim DeMint's fault if President Obama tries to bypass Congress to enact his agenda unilaterally through massive new regulations and Republicans try to stop this end-run around will of the American people?
Want an idea of what business cares about? Here are the five questions the U.S. Chamber of Commerce wants every citizen to ask his or her candidates for the House and Senate to find out "Do Your Candidates Get it?":
1. Do you believe that our free enterprise system is currently threatened?
2. Do you believe that tax increases hurt job creation?
3. Do you think that the growth of government at all levels and the deficits that follow negatively impact job creation?
4. Would you deal with the debt and deficit issues through increasing government revenue or decreasing government spending?
5. Do you believe that the uncertainty resulting from pending tax increases, higher government deficits, and more government regulations will hurt the economy?
Funny, nothing in there about the danger that electing Jim DeMint and an influx of fiscal conservatives could put the brakes on runaway spending and massive new tax increases.
| September 29, 2010; 12:41 PM ET
Categories: Thiessen | Tags: Marc Thiessen
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