America's economic crisis

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by Sen. Mitch McConnell

Many Kentuckians are struggling in this economy, and I know they are frustrated by how hard it is just to stay above water. Home values are falling, automobile sales growth is at its lowest point this year, and manufacturing growth is at its lowest in nearly two years. One in ten Kentuckians are unemployed. And polls show most Americans remain pessimistic about a recovery.
 But if anything could frustrate the Kentuckians I talk to more than these economic conditions, it is the federal government’s response to them. People are looking to Washington for solutions. What are the president and the liberals in Washington doing to create jobs and grow the economy?
The answers are not reassuring. Washington still spends trillions more dollars than it takes in. Under this president’s leadership, the national debt has skyrocketed by 35 percent, and the deficit is three times bigger than the biggest annual deficit ever of the last administration.
If that weren’t enough, Washington Democrats are refusing to even propose a budget to get our nation’s fiscal house in order.
Opportunities abound for the president and Washington Democrats to set polices that will unleash job creation and grow our economy—and yet, time after time, they choose the wrong course.
Take domestic energy production. Increasing this country’s energy production would go a long way toward creating new jobs and would lower fuel prices, but the decisions made by this administration have stifled production. They’ve slowed the issuing of permits for deepwater energy exploration to a trickle, keeping American energy and American jobs on the sidelines.
They’ve similarly slowed the pace of permits for mining operations here in Kentucky and elsewhere, making the more than 200,000 Kentuckians who rely on the coal industry for work fearful for their financial future.
And the administration’s EPA is trying to regulate carbon dioxide emissions from coal plants, which is a backdoor route to imposing a national energy tax on the country.
Their record on trade isn’t much better. Even though the president has admitted that free trade agreements will create tens of thousands of jobs for American families, he refuses to move on pending free trade agreements with South Korea, Panama, and Columbia that are ready to go unless Congress also agrees to a new demand for more spending.
And let’s not forget the job-stifling rules and taxes that this administration and the liberals in Washington continue to issue—they send the wrong signals to job creators and force them to hunker down and prepare for the worst instead of hiring people and creating jobs for the future.
This country is in crisis, and in serious need of solutions. But Washington Democrats just aren’t being serious.
It’s difficult to ask businesses to be confident about the future when one of America’s two political parties in Washington—the one that controls the White House—is unwilling to work on behalf of that future by doing what it takes to rein in our debt, cut spending, lower taxes, create jobs and grow the economy.
But until they do, Republicans will keep proposing solutions to this economic crisis. At least one party will make the case for unleashing domestic energy exploration, opening new markets for American products, slashing spending and taxes, and devising a responsible plan to get control of the deficit and our national debt.
And when the liberals in Washington finally come around to the urgency of this problem, Republicans will look forward to working with them and be ready to listen.