30 March 2022

Note from Norm: An Economy That Works For All Americans

“It’s the economy, stupid!”

So said James Carville in 1992.

So says Americans in 2022.

With inflation at an historic high of nearly 8% — the national average for a gallon of regular unleaded is currently at $4.24 up from $2.86 a gallon just a year ago – eggs are at an average of $2.86 a dozen, the highest average cost since April 2020 according to the USDA.

More concerning is this quote from a report from the same USDA:

“In 2022, food-at-home prices are predicted to increase between 3.0 and 4.0 percent, and food-away-from-home prices are predicted to increase between 5.5 and 6.5 percent. Price increases for food away from home are expected to exceed historical averages and the inflation rate in 2021.”

As America begins to gear up for mid-term Elections it is clear that the message from Republicans is going to be much different than that from Democrats.

Democrats want Americans to be divided on just about every social and cultural issue they can imagine or devise.  After pouring trillions of dollars of federal government spending into an economy that didn’t need it, they are now confounded by why inflation is killing Americans spending power and quality of life.

It wasn’t as though they weren’t warned.  Long before President Joe Biden convinced Democrats to spend more and more money the party’s own economists were flashing warning signs.

As he has been so often on foreign policy, Joe Biden was wrong again on domestic policy. The impact has devastated hard-working Americans, particularly the middle-class and the working poor.

It isn’t the War in Ukraine that has created inflation – higher prices at the gas pump and the grocery store – slowed our capacity to increase energy production – and undermined economic growth at a time when the world needs America humming at a high level of production.

It’s the policies of Democrats in the White House and Congress that have done more to hobble each critical area of the American economy than anything any other foreign nation has done, or not done, to it.

Mid-term elections are never good for the party of the President in power.  And, perhaps no election may be more brutal for a sitting President than those in 2022.  With generic ballots consistently showing Republicans running ahead of Democrats some, including former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, believe Republicans may have one of the largest GOP majorities in the House in history.

Republicans, unlike Democrats, don’t have to manufacturer issues to appease multiple different special interest groups in order to convince Americans to put them power.  All they have to do is appeal to the very issue that has driven elections in American for generations:  The promise of the American Dream.

Today, more than ever, that dream is under assault by Democrats in Congress, the White House and in offices of government throughout the country.

Democrats in local offices keep raising property taxes, defunding police departments, and increasing spending on their favorite social issues.  Incumbent Democratic Governors ignore sharp increases in crime, up until recently keep their states in some form of a COVID-19 lockdown and fail to push back on public education policies that treat classrooms as social and cultural policy battlegrounds.

And Democrats in Washington are just a mirror image of their local and state counterparts – with more zeroes behind the spending they have been doing while they control each branch of the federal government.

As prices and inflation keep going up, and American’s standard of living keeps going down. Republicans have an historic opportunity to send a clear message that their number one priority is to reverse the dynamic.

By implementing policies that will get energy companies to invest in greater domestic energy production, increase refinery capacity, reduce barriers to hiring, and holding the line on taxes and spending, Republicans can fundamentally transform the American economy into one that works for everyone.

While Democrats try to dismantle our nation’s energy system with their vision of a windmill on every corner and a solar panel on every roof the real-life that Americans live is getting harder with every gallon of gas they have to pump.

I have long supported an “all-of-the-above” approach to energy production in America – including renewable energy of all kinds.  But that approach is an anathema to Democrats who want us to abandon oil, natural gas, and coal while they invest trillions of dollars into unproven energy concept Unicorns.

America is strongest across the world when we are strong at home.  Being strong at home starts with an economy that works for all Americans.  And that economy needs to be unleashed in a way that creates jobs, invests in energy production, and provides every American their chance to seize the American Dream.

That’s just smart economic sense that even stupid people should be able to understand.