Middle-income families have been hit the hardest by the recession – a whopping 95% of job losses occurred in middle-skill occupations – and the President’s policies have made it worse. Since the President took office, studies show middle-income wages dropped by $4,300. His healthcare law, energy policies and threat of higher taxes have diminished job opportunities for Americans across the country. As one railroad car inspector put it: President Obama “kept pushing this change, change, change, and he hasn’t done anything.” In contrast, House Republicans are driving real solutions to help create jobs, lower taxes and give middle-income families more certainty – such as our 20% small business tax cut that will help increase wages for workers. It’s time for the President to commit to the change he promised and join us to create more opportunities for working people across the country.
Today In History: In 1926, Ford Motor Company becomes one of the first companies in America to adopt a five-day, 40-hour week for workers in its automotive factories. The policy would be extended to Ford's office workers the following August.
Birthdays: Tim McGraw, Julie Benz, Ray Parker Jr., Dann Florek, and Calamity Jane
Editor’s Note: After two and half years of Ledgers & Whip-Ups, today is my last day with Team Cantor. Thank you to all the loyal readers, your email exchanges have made the morning emails more entertaining. I wanted to especially thank Brad Dayspring and Laena Fallon for their patience and leadership during my time here. I wish the Majority Leader and Team Cantor the best as I take on my new adventure as Communications Director for Bill Huizenga (MI -2). This is Boomer signing off …
Here is what’s in today’s Ledger …
State Of Play: President Obama’s Economic Policies Continue To Fall Short For America’s Job Creators, Middle Class
President Obama’s Economic Policies Have Failed The Middle Class. Barack Obama campaigned four years ago assailing President George W. Bush for wage losses suffered by the middle class. More than three years into Obama’s own presidency, those declines have only deepened. The rebound from the worst recession since the 1930s has generated relatively few of the moderately skilled jobs that once supported the middle class, tightening the financial squeeze on many Americans, even those who are employed. “It started long before Obama, but he hasn’t done anything,” said John Forsyth, 58, a railroad-car inspector and political independent from Lebanon, Ohio. “He kept pushing this change, change, change, and he hasn’t done anything.” … Underlying the erosion of the middle class, defined by some economists as the middle 60 percent of income earners, are trends that stretch back decades, including competition from lower-wage workers overseas and technological advances that allow factories and offices to produce more with less labor. Bloomberg
Growth Engine Stalls: 80% Of Small Businesses Say They Did Not Hire In The First Quarter Of 2012. Recently, the Manta SMB Wellness Index found that many small business owners said they were planning to hire at this time last year, but the most of them (80 percent) have not. The survey also found that 45 percent do not plan to hire additional workers this year while one-third say it's too early to tell. … The Manta SMB Wellness Index found that 42 percent of small businesses feel the economy is not really in recovery. New business activity fell 30 percent in the first three months of 2012, compared to the same time last year. More than four in 10 small business owners say taxes are more complicated this year than in previous years, and more than 30 percent report that they owed more money in taxes this year than last year. Newsroom New Jersey
• President Obama and Senate Democrats Need To Stop Playing Games and Boost Small Business. A key to unleashing the economy is to give small businesses a chance to grow and create new jobs. An effort to boost small business is H.R. 9, passed by the House of Representatives last week. I strongly urge California Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein and the entire Senate to act quickly and pass this measure. The bill, known as the "Small Business Tax Cut," will help small business owners retain more capital, invest in their businesses and create more jobs. … under the current tax code, small businesses are faced with enormous burdens that are sapping their capital. Irrespective of whether they pay taxes at the corporate or individual level, small businesses can face up to a 35 percent federal tax rate. When small businesses taxes are high, it blocks their ability to reinvest in the business, expand and create jobs. … The president's tax strategy should focus on pro-growth policies that will stimulate our economy. President Obama's current plan will raise taxes and not create a single job or address any of our economy's fiscal challenges. The president and Senate should not play political games and act quickly on House-passed legislation that will spur American job growth. Record Searchlight
Fact Check Calls President Obama’s Infrastructure Remarks “Ridiculous.” As we said before, we understand the need for symbolism. But that does not give a president license to stretch the facts. Calling out the Republicans at the Brent Spence bridge was bad enough, given the bipartisan support for its reconstruction. But pointing to the Sherman Milton Bridge, which already has been repaired without funding from the president’s jobs bill, is ridiculous. The Washington Post
The Road Ahead: President Obama Continues To Restrict Growth, Job Creation, and Energy Independence In Virginia
Gov. McDonnell: Virginia Could Be An Energy Power … If The Obama Administration Would Let It. When President Obama endorsed an "all of the above" energy strategy in this year's State of the Union address, he gave the impression that he was finally adopting an aggressive policy. Unfortunately, the president's words are worlds apart from his actions—especially when it comes to developing our nation's abundant offshore oil and natural gas resources. To see that disconnect in action, look at the Commonwealth of Virginia. In 2010, Virginia was poised to become the first state on the East Coast permitted to produce oil and natural gas offshore. In 2007, the federal government had designated certain offshore areas as available for oil and gas leases, raising the prospect of thousands of new jobs and significant new revenues for the state and local governments. However, our opportunity was extinguished and the lease sale canceled after November, when the Obama administration abruptly dropped Virginia from the government's latest leasing plan, with little explanation and even less regard for the strong bipartisan and public support for the offshore initiative. At a moment when we should be looking for every opportunity to safely produce more domestic energy, the Obama administration unilaterally declared a seven-year timeout. The Wall Street Journal
• More Energy = More Jobs: “Energy Is The Lifeblood Of Our Nation’s Economic Growth.” If an "all of the above" energy strategy—one that includes offshore oil and natural gas development—is what the administration seeks, there is an organization willing to work with the president. The Outer Continental Shelf Governors Coalition is comprised of the governors of seven coastal states, including Virginia, Texas and Alaska. … During my term as governor, we have focused on making Virginia the energy capital of the East Coast. In just two years our state has taken aggressive actions to harness the power of offshore wind and promote greater utilization of solar energy. Had the president not stopped Virginia's offshore oil and gas efforts, a portion of the revenue from those efforts would have gone—under a law passed during my term of office—to renewable energy research. We remain committed to developing Virginia's offshore oil and gas. Energy is the lifeblood of our nation's economic growth. More energy means more jobs and we need to use all of our domestic energy resources. The Wall Street Journal
President Obama Has Been Focused On Jobs? – Milbank Indicates Otherwise. No, preezy is making me queasy because his nonstop campaigning is looking … In a political culture that long ago surrendered to the permanent campaign, Obama has managed to take things to a whole new level. According to statistics compiled for a book to be published this summer, the president has already set a record for total first-term fundraisers — 191 — and that’s only through March 6. The Washington Post