Last week’s job report was a huge disappointment, with the U.S. economy adding just 235,000 jobs in August, missing economists’ expectations of 720,000 by nearly half a million. People are simply making more money sitting on their couches, collecting unemployment checks than they are in the workplace. Eight million Americans are unemployed, but there’s a record 10 million job openings.
In June, about 1.8 million out-of-work Americans said they turned down job offers because of the generosity of unemployment benefits, according to a Morning Consult poll. According to NFIB’s July Small Business Jobs Report, “labor quality” is the biggest concern to mom-and-pop shops, with 26% of survey respondents identifying it as their “single most important problem.” Of those surveyed, 63% said they were currently hiring or trying to hire. Of this group, 89% said there were few or no “qualified job applicants.”
To date, 26 states, mostly led by Republican governors, have opted to cut these emergency COVID-19 benefits early to help incentivize Americans to get back to work. As a result, it’s red states that are leading the economic recovery. Through July, 16 of the top 20 states for recovering jobs from the pandemic were led by Republican governors. Out of the top 20 states with the lowest unemployment rates, 16 are led by Republican governors.
Mr. Biden’s ‘build back better’ program would create the largest expansion of welfare benefits since the 1960s, further dissuading able-bodied Americans from reentering the workforce. It would hamstring small businesses with increased regulation. It would raise the business tax rate to 28%, higher than communist China, incentivizing more U.S. companies to take their jobs abroad.
It aims to push Green New Deal objectives, killing thousands of fossil-fuel jobs, at a time when American’s are paying on average over $3 per gallon at the pump, Russian exports of oil to the U.S. are at an all-time high, and Mr. Biden is begging OPEC to pump more oil to lower prices.
Mr. Biden’s ‘build back better’ plan will also, undoubtedly, cause further inflation. Higher prices have already exceeded wage growth in the first six months of Mr. Biden’s presidency.
Not surprisingly, Mr. Biden used the disappointing August jobs report as proof his $3.5 trillion spending bill and $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bills are needed to create “good-paying jobs” and “long-term prosperity.”
He couldn’t be more wrong.
Before the pandemic, the U.S. economy was humming as then-President Donald J. Trump pushed an agenda of low taxes, restrained regulation, and targeted federal government spending. More than 6 million Americans were lifted from poverty. The unemployment rate dropped to a historic 3.5%, including the highest employment rates for African Americans, Hispanics, Asian Americans, and blue-collar workers with no more than a high school diploma. After years of stagnant wages, real wages increased 10% for middle-class workers. Before the pandemic, the U.S. had become the world’s largest oil producer and was less dependent on foreign producers such as Russia’s Vladimir Putin.
The key to building back better is lowering taxes, reducing regulations, and rewarding hard work, innovation, and economic risk-taking. Mr. Trump’s administration proved this.
Unfortunately, Mr. Biden is doing the exact opposite. He wants to ‘fundamentally transform’ this country through a historic tax and spend policy, which will only threaten American prosperity and destroy the American dream. It’s the opposite of what’s needed right now.