Hurricane Isaac might be pounding the GOP convention in Tampa this week, but on the political front, the skies are clear for Republicans looking toward this year’s election. During times of national crisis, the electorate acts rationally when presented with a clear alternative to the status quo that is responsible for the mess. In 2012, conservatives offer voters a comprehensive, united vision for cleaning up the Obama Great Recession and returning America to economic growth and prosperity.
Taxation: The George W. Bush tax cuts are set to expire on Dec. 31. Letting the sun set on this package means an automatic tax hike of $3.2 trillion will wallop individuals and businesses as of New Year’s Day 2013. In some states, the tax bill will jump by almost $6,000 per household. Overall, taxes would rise for 83 percent, including almost everybody making $60,000 or more, according to the Tax Policy Center. Stealing this fortune from the private sector and giving it to bureaucrats to waste on inefficient government programs mean it can’t be invested in job-creating enterprises. The right is united that extending these tax cuts is the least that must be done to attack the Obama unemployment surge.
Energy: Polls show voters highly prioritize making the United States energy-independent. President Obama has pursued suicidal policies that have gutted our long-term energy-production capacity. These include deep-sixing the Keystone XL pipeline, persecuting the coal and oil industries, wasting billions on purportedly green technologies that don’t work, and prohibiting drilling in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, the Gulf and all along our coasts. The movement challenging Mr. Obama for the Oval Office wants to, “Drill, baby, drill,” and undo other backwards liberal acts that threaten to starve U.S. industry and other consumers of needed power.
Regulation: U.S. manufacturers are being suffocated by approximately 2,200 regulations imposed by the federal government over the past three decades. “In 2012, major regulations could reduce the total value of shipments from the manufacturing sector by up to $500 billion in constant 2010 dollars,” according to a new report released by NERA Economic Consulting and the Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation. “Manufacturing exports in 2012 could be up to 17 percent lower than they would be without the estimated cost burden from major regulations.” The nanny-state regulatory agenda undermines U.S. competitiveness against foreign countries that pursue policies that don’t assume the corporate-government relationship has to be adversarial. The pro-business, conservative coalition wants to cut through the rat’s nest of red tape strangling America’s job creators.
Debt: Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus installed a debt clock at his party’s convention center in Florida. U.S. national debt is set to hit the heart-stopping $16 trillion mark about the time Mitt Romney makes his keynote address accepting the Republican nomination for president on Thursday. Since taking office, Mr. Obama has added nearly $5 trillion in debt, or more than was stacked up by the first 41 U.S. presidents combined, according to CNS News. The Obama administration’s trillion dollars in “shovel-ready” stimulus projects failed to jumpstart job growth and only dug the country deeper into a dark hole. The challengers promise to cut spending to lighten this millstone tied around the neck of the private-sector economy.
A tropical storm may be hitting the Republican convention, but it’s Mr. Obama and the Democrats who need to worry about a November storm front moving in. Millions of Americans are jobless in the Obama economy. The president might literally feel their pain after this election is over.
Brett M. Decker is editorial page editor of The Washington Times. He is coauthor of the new book “Bowing to Beijing” (Regnery, 2011).