For several years, the economy has been described as the most important voting issue, and 75% of likely voters consider it “Very Important” for their 2014 congressional vote. Right now, only 20% of consumers rate our economy as good or excellent, and twice as many rate it poorly. Americans have become more negative about the economy this year, and only 27% think it will get better during the upcoming year.
Americans do not think that the nation is headed in the right direction, we do not approve of Barack Obama’s handling of the economy, and our feelings towards Wall Street firms are negative. More American adults believe the job market is worse instead of better than it was last year.
On the other hand, polls also show that voters favor Republicans most to handle the economy, taxes, job creation, government spending, and issues affecting small business. Arguing on behalf of this economic platform reinforces these perceived strengths. We must continue to promote independent individuals, working families, and small businesses with free-market policy that leads to economic growth and full-time job creation. At every opportunity, we must continue to discourage crony capitalism, wasteful deficit spending that burdens our generation, and excessive regulations that hinder our economy.
We are the party of capitalism and economic freedom, and we reject concentrated, consolidated elite economic power and corporate statism. Our economic vision focuses on small business and the individual, not big business masterminded by big government. We know that free market policies lead to economic growth, which is our primary goal. The economic recovery since the Great Recession ended in June 2009 has been much worse than previous recoveries, despite unprecedented federal deficit spending promoted by the other party. There is an alternative to the past four years, with less spending, lower taxes, more jobs, faster economic growth, and a better quality of life for all Americans.
We are committed to reducing government spending at all levels, and primarily to downsizing the Federal government, and we join with all Americans, of every income level, to bear this burden. Current levels of out-of-control Federal spending cause our enormous national debt to escalate, and we must support policies that stanch further increases to the debt load that will be inherited by our generation. We support reining in wasteful spending, testing every program to see if it is constitutional, effective, necessary, and worth borrowing money for, and terminating programs that fail these tests. We believe that our tax payments are only intended for authorized and effective services, not for income redistribution or crony capitalism. We reject corporate cronyism, disagree with Federal socializing of corporate losses, and do not think that taxpayers should be on the hook for bailing out corporations or other governments.
We believe that excessive regulation burdens and unnecessary bureaucratic red tape restricts the economy, and must be reduced in order to promote growth and job creation. The costs imposed by regulations are a hidden tax on the economy that does not pay down the debt. In order to increase accountability for and transparency in the Federal regulatory process, we support legislation, like the REINS Act, that requires a joint resolution of approval, enacted into law, before a new, costly, major regulation issued by a Federal agency may take effect. We also support sunset requirements to force reconsideration of regulations.
For simplifying our tax system, we endorse the repeal of the 16th Amendment and the abolition of the Internal Revenue Service, and we would replace the current income taxes with a single-rate national sales tax on final retail consumption, like the FairTax. Our tax system should reward hard work and savings, but the current code creates disincentives to work and is biased against the saving and investment that is crucial to future economic growth. With no corporate taxes on income, America would be more competitive worldwide; companies would migrate back and bring jobs and investment to our country.
Thirty-five years ago, Congress gave the Federal Reserve a “dual mandate” to maximize employment in addition to maintaining price stability. We support the repeal of the Humphrey-Hawkins Act, so the Federal Reserve can solely focus on managing inflation. We need monetary policy decisions that are based on sound economic principles, but the “dual mandate” makes the Federal Reserve a political actor pressured to bring down unemployment by creating money, while ignoring the long-term effects for the short-run illusion that people are better off. We oppose further “quantitative easing” and loose monetary policies that are good for the indebted and stock investors, but not for working families or retirees. With a focus on improving transparency, we support an annual audit of Federal Reserve’s activities.
We know that individual prosperity and self-reliance provides the means to be independent from the government, so we support policies that foster economic growth through entrepreneurship and a healthy and thriving small business community. A recent study shows that Florida is already more entrepreneurial than the nation as a whole, and four out of five Floridians are employed by small businesses. We support regulatory reform and tax reform that will help these employees and employers to prosper.
Creating jobs and getting Americans back to work is the top domestic priority of all. The current labor-market crisis represents a human tragedy, as millions are unable to realize their full potential. The jobs picture is not improving as it could and may get worse, because businesses still lack confidence. People have become frustrated and stopped looking for work, low-paying industries and part-time jobs account for most of the jobs being added, and millions are working part-time when they would prefer full-time work.
The current high unemployment and underemployment rates, which are well above what is typical for a healthy economy, do not need to be accepted as the “new normal.” We have solutions that will generate full-time jobs that create stability, security and are essential for an upwardly mobile society with opportunity for all. The availability of full-time jobs is the foundation of working families, and implementation of our pro-growth agenda of spending cuts, regulatory reform, tax reform, free trade expansion, and domestic energy production will create the jobs we need.