It has been five years since President Barack Obama first promised to bring “hope and change” and a better life to all Americans. Yet the recent news of a shrinking labor force, a stagnant economy and reduced wages is causing much concern throughout the country. Americans are struggling to make ends meet; young college graduates are finding a job market that simply isn’t hiring; and millions of families are wondering where their next paycheck will come from.
But the Democrats claim to have a sound economic plan. Their plan focuses on eliminating ‘job lock’ through Obamacare and mandating a higher minimum wage. While phrases like “give America a raise” or “free health care for all” make for good one-liners on cable television, they don’t make good policy.
In fact, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office recently released two reports indicating that the Democrats’ plans will slow economic growth and eliminate jobs.
A CBO report issued on Feb. 4, 2014, about Obamacare reveals that the law would shrink the labor force by 2.3 million workers. Democrats contend this is a good thing — that Americans work too hard and that Obamacare will allow people to spend more time with their families. The CBO director, Douglas Elmendorf, testified before Congress that reduced labor force participation is the “central factor in slowing economic growth.”
The bottom line is this: A shrinking labor force is never a good thing and a sluggish economy leads to job loss and less opportunity.
It’s time to stop imposing the President’s failed health care law on the country. This law has caused millions of Americans to lose their insurance, forced businesses to lay off employees and cut their hours, all while Americans pay more for health care while getting less. We need health care reform. But Obamacare is not the answer and it’s not what we were promised.
It’s time to work on a step-by-step, common-sense approach that really does lower costs and provide access to the quality care that people need without eliminating jobs and shrinking the labor force.
The second CBO report, issued on Feb. 18, 2014, to rain on the Democrats’ parade states that raising the minimum wage to the proposed $10.10 would eliminate 500,000 jobs. Yet the Democrats continue to push this job-killing proposal demonizing Republicans as heartless. Republicans want all Americans to find a job — because a job is much more than a paycheck. Jobs give people the purpose to build a better life. Americans who have minimum wage jobs work hard for their paychecks, but we should view these jobs as stepping stones, not careers. These jobs provide important work experience and training, particularly for young Americans. Instead of mandating a higher minimum wage that would destroy jobs, Washington should be focused on how we can move up from minimum wage jobs by growing our economy and creating more opportunity for all Americans.
Americans work too hard and deserve a better future than what the Democrats are offering. Their recent war on work is not fair to the millions of unemployed and underemployed Americans who wake up every day hoping that today will be the day they find a job and the path to a better, more secure future. Republicans have a plan to get Washington out of the way – whether at the doctor’s office or in the job market — to build an America that works and makes life better for hard-working Americans.