The Leader's Ledger

Posted by Brian Patrick on

Good morning,

Three years ago, President Obama’s trillion-dollar stimulus became law with the promise of keeping unemployment below 8 percent. Since that time, unemployment has not gone below 8% and millions of Americans remain out of work. President Obama’s stimulus failed to deliver and his economic have led to historic debt and deficits, joblessness and stagnation. As Leader Cantor said yesterday, “Three years ago, House Republicans proposed a stimulus alternative focused on small business people, which President Obama rejected. Now that the American people have rejected the President’s approach, it’s time to try something new. We must encourage more entrepreneurs to start small businesses and provide the environment so risk takers will again take risks. This is where the jobs will come from.”

Today In History: In 1966, Brian Wilson started to roll tape on take one of "Good Vibrations." Six months, four studios and $50,000 later, he finally completed his three-minute-and-thirty-nine-second symphony, pieced together from more than 90 hours of tape recorded during literally hundreds of sessions.

Birthdays: Rep. Jim Jordan, Rep. Randy Forbes, Denise Richards, Michal Jordan, Rene Russo, Paris Hilton, and Jerry O’Connell

Here is what’s in today’s Ledger …

State Of Play: Three Years Later … President Obama’s Failed Economic Policies Are On Full Display

Leader Cantor Calls On President Obama and Senator Reid To Stand By Their Rhetoric and Work With Republicans To Hep Small Businesses Grow and Create Jobs. “The Obama Presidency has been defined by years of stagnation, and we need bold, pro-growth policies to spur real economic growth and boost the job engines in this country – our nation’s small businesses. … We must encourage more entrepreneurs to start small businesses and provide the environment so risk takers will again take risks. This is where the jobs will come from. And our efforts should be focused on creating an environment to foster job creation. That is why I propose a 20% small business tax cut to help the backbone of our economy – American small business people. I call on President and Senator Reid to stand by their rhetoric and work with us help small businesses grow and create jobs.” Press Release

McCarthy, Roskam Op-Ed: President Obama’s Ultimate Broken Promise – The Failed Trillion Dollar Stimulus. President Obama’s The nearly one trillion dollar “stimulus” package was supposed to be Democrats’ government fix for the American economy. Not only did President Obama promise 3.5 million jobs, but the White House’s chief economists insisted that if only we passed the nearly trillion dollars in government spending, national unemployment would never reach as high as 8 percent. Yet here we are three years later, the American economy is, net, down more than 1.1 million jobs and the national unemployment rate still hasn’t dropped below 8 percent. Our home states of California and Illinois have respective unemployment rates of 11.1 percent and 9.8 percent and nationally, the Congressional Budget Office just reported our nation is in the longest period of high unemployment since the Great Depression. National Review Online

Stimulus Graphic (Courtesy of Ways and Means)

More Signs The Stimulus Failed: CBO Projects Above 8% Unemployment Into 2014. This can't be good news for President Obama. The Congressional Budget Office is projecting unemployment of more than 8% throughout this election year and into 2014. … "The rate of unemployment in the United States has exceeded 8 percent since February 2009, making the past three years the longest stretch of high unemployment in this country since the Great Depression," the CBO says in a newly released report. It added: "CBO projects that the unemployment rate will remain above 8 percent until 2014. The share of unemployed people who have been looking for work for more than six months -- referred to as the long-term unemployed -- topped 40 percent in December 2009 and has remained above that level ever since." USA Today

Reminder: Unemployment Has Been Above 8% For The Past 36 Months

Underemployment On The Rise, Hits 19%. Underemployment, a measure that combines the percentage of workers who are unemployed with the percentage working part time but wanting full-time work, is 19.0% in mid-February. This is higher than the 18.7% recorded for January, and is up significantly compared with January's mid-month reading of 18.1%. Gallup

FLASHBACK: Chris Matthews On Pelosi Presiding Over The Largest Fiscal Boondoggle In U.S. History. “It didn’t go to construction projects, which people could smell and see, and I think that’s what bugs people, and that’s why Pelosi’s not popular. She’s not popular because she presided over the creation of a big grab bag of stuff, from condoms to God knows what.” ABC News

The Economy: House Republicans Push Pro-Growth Solutions, Focus On Boosting Small Business, Removing Regulatory Burdens

House Financial Services Committee Overwhelmingly Passes IPO Bill To Boost Small Business Job Creators. A U.S. House panel Thursday advanced bipartisan legislation to make it easier for smaller companies to launch initial public offerings, the latest in a series of bills designed to spur job creation. The House Financial Services Committee voted 54-1 to pass the measure, which aims to improve smaller companies' access to capital by easing certain securities regulations, ranging from audit requirements to analyst research restrictions. "With passage of this bill, small companies considering going public will get the extra break they need to go forward," said Rep. Stephen Fincher (R., Tenn.), who helped draft the legislation. "Small businesses are the real job creators and this bill will help them move forward with their goals so they can expand, hire employees and put Americans back to work." The Wall Street Journal

Majority Leader Cantor: “We Must Increase Opportunities For Small Business Owners And Entrepreneurs To Take Risks And Succeed So That They’re Able To Grow, Innovate And Create Jobs.” This bipartisan legislation will make it easier for high-growth, job-creating small businesses to access capital and go public. Along with this common-sense bill, House Republicans will continue to advance measures to give our nation’s job creators, small businesses and entrepreneurs more opportunity to expand, grow and create jobs, without being stifled by harmful regulations.” Press Release

From Across The Pond: Over-Regulated America – The Home Of Laissez-Faire Is Being Suffocated By Excessive and Badly Written Regulation. But red tape in America is no laughing matter. The problem is not the rules that are self-evidently absurd. It is the ones that sound reasonable on their own but impose a huge burden collectively. America is meant to be the home of laissez-faire. Unlike Europeans, whose lives have long been circumscribed by meddling governments and diktats from Brussels, Americans are supposed to be free to choose, for better or for worse. Yet for some time America has been straying from this ideal. … Dodd-Frank is far too complex … Hardly anyone has actually read Dodd-Frank, besides the Chinese government and our correspondent in New York (see article). Those who have struggle to make sense of it, not least because so much detail has yet to be filled in: of the 400 rules it mandates, only 93 have been finalised. So financial firms in America must prepare to comply with a law that is partly unintelligible and partly unknowable. … Complexity costs money. Sarbanes-Oxley, a law aimed at preventing Enron-style frauds, has made it so difficult to list shares on an American stockmarket that firms increasingly look elsewhere or stay private. America’s share of initial public offerings fell from 67% in 2002 (when Sarbox passed) to 16% last year, despite some benign tweaks to the law. A study for the Small Business Administration, a government body, found that regulations in general add $10,585 in costs per employee. It’s a wonder the jobless rate isn’t even higher than it is. The Economist

President Obama, Congressional Democrats Pay Nothing More Than Lip Service To Reducing Regulations. Democrats pay lip service to the need to slim the rulebook—Mr Obama’s regulations tsar is supposed to ensure that new rules are cost-effective. But the administration has a bias towards overstating benefits and underestimating costs … America needs a smarter approach to regulation. First, all important rules should be subjected to cost-benefit analysis by an independent watchdog. The results should be made public before the rule is enacted. All big regulations should also come with sunset clauses, so that they expire after, say, ten years unless Congress explicitly re-authorises them. The Economist

ACTION ALERT: Financial Services Passes Common Sense, Cost Assessment Regulatory Relief Bill. The committee also was poised to pass legislation requiring the Securities and Exchange Commission to conduct a more thorough assessment of how much regulations cost the financial industry, part of a push to curtail what Republicans contend are overly burdensome rules. The bill, authored by Rep. Scott Garrett (R., N.J.), would require an evaluation of whether regulations are narrowly "tailored to impose the least burden on society." Garrett said the proposal was a "common sense" reform to eliminate overly burdensome regulations. The Wall Street Journal

Keeping Tabs

House Republicans Continue To Pass Legislation Increasing Domestic Energy Production, Call On Senate Democrats To Act. Thursday, the House passed its latest energy plan. It would authorize oil drilling offshore and in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, approve the Keystone XL pipeline and promote development of U.S. oil sands in the Rocky Mountains … “We should move forward with those things that help us control our own destiny on prices. But it does not look like we’re doing that right now because of folks in the do-nothing Senate,” said freshman Rep. Tim Scott (R-S.C.). Other GOP members are in lockstep, talking about additional supply. “We’ve got to produce American energy, and this piece of legislation opens up lots of opportunities to do that,” said Kansas Rep. Mike Pompeo, speaking about the House bill. “I think that anytime you create more supply, price comes down, and so we have to take every opportunity to do that.” “Certainly we know every time you increase the supply, it puts a downward pressure on the price of the buyer, and if you put downward pressure on the price of the buyer, you get lower prices at the pump,” added Rep. Jeff Landry (R-La.). Politico

• There are 27 bipartisan jobs bills stuck in the Senate, including several bills that boost domestic energy production and make it easier for small businesses to grow and create jobs. When will Senator Reid and Senator Schumer get serious and hold a vote?

President Obama’s Failed Energy Strategy Is Costing Americans. The math is simple: according to government and consumer group figures, Americans pay an average of $1,010 more a year for gas than they did on President Obama's Inauguration Day in January 2009. Here's how it breaks down. When Obama came into office, gas averaged about $1.84, according to Consumer Reports. Americans drive an average of 13,476 miles a year, said the Department of Transportation. And the current average American mpg is 22.4 gallons. That means drivers buy an average of 601 gallons of gas a year. Today, a gallon of regular averages $3.52, a three year difference of $1.68, meaning Americans are paying $1,010 more a year than in January 2009. And if gas surges to $5 as some reports suggest, that means Americans will end up paying $1,899 more than when Obama came into office, nearly twice the value of the payroll tax cut. The Washington Examiner

GOP Health Care Reforms