September 21, 2011 11:54 am ET - by Matt Finkelstein
As President Obama pushes forward with his plan to boost job creation, it's important to remember that conservatives are disputing not only the solution but the problem itself.
While steps like a payroll tax cut and infrastructure spending would put more money in working Americans' pockets — creating more customers for businesses that can afford to hire but have no incentive to do so because of low demand — Republican politicians contend that Obama's ideas will not work because they don't address the "uncertainty" caused by government regulations.
Here, for example, is Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) attempting to answer his own question, "Why do we have high unemployment?"
GRAHAM: Well, the last time I checked, the American Dream was to create your own business, pass it on to your kids, and they could do better than you. And that is being lost because of the amount of debt we're passing on, but we need jobs, we don't need more money coming to Washington. So this president's policies have failed. Why do we have high unemployment? Who's going to hire when you don't know what your health care bill is going to be because of Obama health care coming into being in 2014? Who's going to hire when the regulatory costs coming out of the Obama administration grow every day? Who's going to hire somebody new when the tax cuts expire in 2013 and you don't know what your tax bill is going to be? And how can you hire somebody if banks won't lend you money when you've got the Obama administration basically taking over loaning money in this country? There's no accident that these policies are failing. They're ill-designed.
Remember, Graham is one of the Republicans with a reputation for being reasonable. Despite his whining about Obama's policies, Graham in fact supported clean energy legislation as recently as last year. And yet even Graham is defying independent economists and small business owners, who maintain the problem is a lack of consumer demand, in favor of right-wing, government-gutting ideology.
Copyright © 2010 Media Matters Action Network. All rights reserved.