The AP had an interesting piece on employers and hiring over the weekend. Basically, employers aren’t hiring because there’s so much uncertainty out there. What will Obamacare cost? What will tax obligations be when the Bush tax cuts expire? So many questions, so few answers.
Jason Speer is nervously watching Congress and possible tax changes as Bush-era income tax cuts near expiration at year’s end. He’s a vice president of Quality Float Works of Schaumberg, Ill., which makes devices to monitor fluid levels in tanks.
Speer says he’d feel a lot better about hiring later this year if it weren’t for the uncertainty about federal taxes. Unable to anticipate his company’s costs, Speer says he can’t make decisions about growth and hiring.
“We don’t know if there’s something around the corner that’s going to hurt our business,” Speer says.
Who is trying to stop the tax hikes from going into effect? Not President Obama, he’s too busy campaigning.
Sen. [John] Cornyn [R-TX] says the impending tax hikes will do far more harm than good:
“Raising taxes is the last thing we should do amid the weakest economic recovery since World War II. Unfortunately, even if we avoid the full ‘Taxmageddon’ scenario, President Obama’s health care law also contains a new surtax on investment that will take effect in 2013. This new surtax will hamper small business investment, which is the lifeblood of private-sector job creation.”
But, in the president’s opposition, there’s a bipartisan movement growing to stop them, Conryn said:
“The good news is that we now have an emerging bipartisan consensus on tax reform. The bad news is that President Obama is missing in action. (Read More)
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid [D-NV] hasn’t been very helpful either. President Obama loves blaming everything on Congress, specifically Republicans, but it’s Reid that keeps any bills from passing.
[Republicans] didn’t have time to filibuster anything, it was over so quickly. Moreover, their ability to take meaningful action was effectively nullified by four specific parliamentary maneuvers taken by Mr. Reid.
Why does the majority go to all this trouble? The simple answer is to protect its members from tough votes.
The Senate is a wide open forum where almost any issue can be raised and voted on at almost any time. This environment is a function of the Senate’s tradition of unlimited debate, but it does leave members vulnerable to having to vote on difficult issues at inconvenient times, like when they are up for re-election.
In response, Majority Leader Reid has adopted the practice of blocking amendments from being offered. No amendments, no surprises, and no tough votes.
Taken alone, Sen. Reid’s actions on S. 2204 are not historically unique. Every recent majority leader has used them on occasion. But what used to be relatively rare has been repeated dozens of times in recent years. (Read More)
It’s almost like the Democrats want the economy to implode, they just want it to happen after the next election. If they’ve lost, they will blame it on Republicans. If they’ve hung on to the White House and the Senate, it will give them a reason to call for even more spending and higher taxes.
Update: Linked by Daily Pundit – thanks!
Update: Dana at The First Street Journal linked and tied it to a later post I did about today’s gloomy economic news. Be sure to check it out.