As their party now controls the Senate with an insurmountable 41-59 minority, Republican leaders yesterday presented their legislative agenda for 2010 and asked Democrats to join them in crafting non-partisan solutions to nation'ês problems.
Jobs, jobs, jobs is the Republicans'ê highest priority. Their Shelby stimulus plan would create 125 jobs by funding $40 billion of earmarks for two projects in Alabama. In a conciliatory gesture, Sen. Shelby (R-AL) would also release his blanket hold on Obama nominees, thus putting at least 70 more people to work.
The second part of the Republican jobs plan is tax cuts for America'ês wealthiest. 'êWe must change the incentives,'ê Republican Leader Mitch McConnell argued. 'êWith taxes so high, most of the unemployed see no reason to get a job. Moreover, as we have proven before, tax cuts by themselves create jobs.'ê McConnell pointed to the Bush tax cuts that resulted in over 800 new jobs in catering bat mitzvahs for daughters of hedge fund operators. Sen. DeMint (R-S.C.) added that that enacting Republican social initiatives — the prohibition of gay marriage, abortion, and reality-based thought — would create millions of jobs.
In addition to the jobs plan the Republican legislative program comprises:
Deficit reduction. Republicans would both finance their tax cuts and significantly reduce the deficit by eliminating government waste, fraud, and inefficiency. Asked for specifics, Sen. Kyl (R-AZ) proposed reducing expenditures in The Department of Waste by $40 billion, cutting the Department of Fraud by 37 percent, and a placing job freeze on the Department of Inefficiency. Sen. DeMint added that enacting Republican social initiatives (above) would reduce the deficit.
Education. Tax cuts for America'ês wealthiest are the cornerstone of the Republican'ês education program. 'êWe must change the incentives. Why bother to get educated if you have to pay taxes?'ê Sen. Cochran (R-Miss) asked.
To improve education, Sen. Cochran also proposed the establishment of The Bible Corps to teach Young Earth and Creationism in public schools. 'êWe now have scientific evidence that the earth was created 3,000 years after the Chinese started brewing alcoholic beverages,'ê he revealed. 'êStudents need to be exposed to these facts.'ê Sen. DeMint added that enacting Republican social initiatives — the prohibition of gay marriage, etc. — would improve education.
Bank Regulation. To prevent another bank meltdown and bailout, the Republican plan would prohibit banks from lending to poor people. 'êDemocrats started this whole mess by allowing banks to make mortgage loans to poor people. We won'êt let this happen again, 'ê Sen. Cornyn (R-TX) promised. In addition, the Republican plan would limit the bank risk by lowering taxes paid by bank executives. 'êIt is Economics 101,'ê Sen. Cornyn explained. 'êThe higher the tax, the more risk they have to take to keep the same after-tax income. High taxes, not the free market, are to blame for the banking crisis.'ê
Sen. DeMint added that enacting Republican social initiatives...
Health Care. 'êEveryone agrees American has the best health care system except for its uninsured,'ê Sen. Chambliss (R-GA) maintained. 'êSo let the uninsured die off and not trouble the rest of us.'ê According to Chambliss, the Republican health plan will also help close the deficit, improve education, and solve the unemployment problem. 'êIf all the uninsured died tomorrow, Medicare and Social Security would become solvent; our schools would rid themselves of their worst students; and unemployment rates would plummet.'ê
Sen. DeMint added that....
Democrats were undecided as to whether to embrace all, or only parts, of the Republican plan. 'êThe math is brutal,'ê Senate Majority Leader Reid (D-NV) observed. "They have 41 votes so we have to go along with most of it. If we don'êt, they will label us radical abolitionists in the 2012 election." Abolitionists? Sen. Reid explained, "Since the majority of the Senate Republican delegation come from former slave states and territories, it looks like they won the Civil War.'ê