I am one of the many Americans looking forward to the upcoming elections. I believe that these elections will be a referendum on the policies and effectiveness of President Obama and the Democrats.
President Obama promised prior to the passage of his stimulus plan that unemployment would remain below 8 percent if the stimulus passed. A year and half later, however, unemployment remains just under 10 percent nationally and over 10 percent in Georgia. My own company initially laid off about a third of its workforce. Two years later, almost 25 percent of the company has not been recalled and may never be.
The high unemployment rate has compounded the foreclosure crisis that initially led to the mortgage meltdown in 2008. When people lose their jobs and can’t replace them, it doesn’t take long for them to exhaust their savings, even with the extensions to unemployment benefits. If homeowners have no money to pay their mortgage, foreclosure swiftly follows. Georgia and Atlanta have had some of the nation’s highest foreclosure rates.
All of this is why I am looking forward to the election. This mortgage mess started with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, government sponsored companies that bought mortgages from banks. President Bush made multiple attempts to reform these companies, but was repeatedly blocked by the Democrats in Congress. Even after President Obama took office, the Democrats still blocked reform of the mortgage giants in their financial reform bill that cracked down on the rest of Wall Street.
While President Obama and the Democrats have been successful at pushing through legislation, the quality and effectiveness of their legislation has been sadly lacking. The stimulus, the health care reform, the financial reform and other assorted programs have, at best, not helped the economy. It is far more likely that by increasing regulation, taxes and uncertainty that the multitude of laws passed by this Congress have actually slowed the recovery. This can be seen by comparing the Obama recovery to that of previous recessions in which the US economy recovered much more quickly after similar recessions. Democratic state candidates such as Roy Barnes want to enact Georgia versions of the stimulus plans that have wrecked the national economy, as well as that of states like California and Michigan.
In contrast, we need to replace Democratic members of Congress with true fiscal conservatives who will keep taxes low and enact business friendly legislation that will encourage private companies to create jobs. On the state level, I’ll be voting for candidates that will reform Georgia’s tax system to encourage more employers to relocate here. Most of all, I’ll be looking for candidates who actually listen to their constituents.
So on November 2, I’ll be voting for real positive change. I’ll be supporting Tea Party candidates who favor smaller government, lower taxes, and free markets. By focusing on growing business, rather than government, we can get America back to work.