Since winning the New Hampshire primary (to no one's surprise), Mitt Romney has made some pretty bizarre, indefensible claims. LIke "Greed is good!"--oh, wait, that was Gordon Gekko, never mind. Mitt announced that anyone who complains about Bain Capital's vulture capitalism is simply envious of his wealth and his strong chin. He also announced that President Obama is responsible for the US losing its AAA credit rating, and that government has grown under Obama.
Couple of actual points, as opposed to Mitt's lies--government, as measured in employees, has been shrinking since Obama got into office. As measured in spending, yes, there is more spending. There are also more people turning 62 and 65 and 67, and therefore collecting Social Security and Medicare. More people on unemployment, and collecting food stamps, thanks to the economy. And about that economy? Oh, yeah, Mitt's wrong there too. The administration did everything it could, short of arresting Republican members of Congress and putting them in irons, to PREVENT the near-default (which, remember, is really what caused the credit downgrade) that Congressional Republicans caused.
And what did that debt limit fight do to economic recovery? A couple of charts (courtesy of Talking Points Memo) illustrate that very nicely. This first one shows how much the recovery was stalled by that fight.
In November, we had a pretty good month. Without the Republicans in Congress causing trouble, we could have been there much, much sooner.
Here's another, longer view, showing what we're really talking about.
One more, also from TPM, shows the economic difference that could be made if we were just able to collect taxes actually owed to the US Treasury by people and businesses. This is not new taxes, this is taxes people have welched on. The administration tried to get the tools to collect those taxes, but they were blocked by--you guessed it--Republicans in Congress. Look at the biggest spending items here--the second biggest is the gap between what is owed and what is collected. Think $385 billion would make a difference?
The Republicans in Congress have done everything they can think of to SLOW economic recovery. Anyone who is out of work, or not quite making ends meet, or collecting food stamps because they can't afford groceries, needs to understand WHO is responsible for that. If the Republicans had been willing to play ball with Democrats and an administration that bent over backward at every stage to bring them into the process, think what progress could have been made. A bigger stimulus package--or a second one--could have done wonders. The president's jobs plan could have put millions to work. We would all be better off.
But no--the Republicans don't want recovery, because that will ensure Obama's reelection. The only thing they care about is stopping that. They don't care about the poor, the hungry, the sick--they care about preventing a second term.
It is really, truly, sickening. They have no shame. And anyone who would vote for them in November had better take a long, hard look at the next guy they see begging on the street, the next family in line at the homeless shelter...and then look in the mirror.