Evelyn Pringle June 19, 2004
The Bush team is baffled because voters are unimpressed by what his Secretary of Commerce calls the "best economy of my lifetime." (He was obviously born within the last 4 months.)
In May 2003, Bush sold his tax cut package as a Jobs and Growth Plan that would create 5.5 million jobs by the end of 2004. Well, it has not created the jobs promised, and the jobs that are available pay lower wages and offer fewer benefits. And, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nearly 50% of the new jobs in professional and business services, are only temporary.
As of April 2004, Ohio still had 202,000 fewer jobs than it did when the recession began in March 2001, according to the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services. That number represents a decrease greater than all but 4 other states. In the same time-frame after the 1990's recession ended, Ohio had gained 116,800 jobs.
Granted, the job market has begun to show moderate signs of growth. But even if it continues at its current pace, it will take 2 more years just to get back to the level it was at when Bush took office.
Due to the rising cost of health care by nearly 50%, college tuition by more than 30%, and families spending hundreds more on gas and energy, 88,345 Ohio families filed bankruptcy in 2003. This represents a 68% increase over the year 2000 and proves that Ohio families are really struggling in the present state of the economy.
John Kerry has a specific plan to help get the economy back on track that will:
* end tax breaks for companies that move jobs overseas
* cut taxes for 99% of corporations that keep jobs in America
* cut the deficit in half in 4 years
* provide health care relief by cutting premiums by up to $1,000
* make college affordable with a tax credit on $4,000 for tuition
* move towards energy independence to cut energy costs for businesses and create the energy-efficient jobs
Bush has no economic plan, aside from more tax cuts. So he shouldn't act so surprised if Ohio voters remain unimpressed by his new TV ads touting numbers that were obviously made up in a Rove campaign strategy meeting.