House Progressive Caucus: Job Creation Trumps Deficit Reduction
November 23, 2011
The Congressional super-committee charged with slicing the federal budget deficit has failed. But now, while some Republican and Democratic members of Congress continue to focus on deficit reduction as the main way to stimulate the economy, the Congressional Progressive Caucus is zeroing in on the need to create more jobs.
In a Nov. 16th hearing, 10 members of the CPC, including co-chairs Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.) and Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) heard testimony from economists and a representative of the group Patriotic Millionaires. The group of 200 wealthy Americans supports increasing taxes on the wealthy as a matter of economic fairness. And the group takes issues with those who say that increasing their taxes will dampen business investment.
Garrett Gruener, a venture capitalist and group member said:
Not once, and I literally mean not once, have any of my decisions—my personal investment decisions or any of the investment decisions I’ve ever seen in the venture community—been a function of marginal taxes…We’re not trying to grow companies in which the change of a few percentage points one way or the other is going to make a big difference.
Economic Policy Institute Research and Policy Director John Irons said that failing to act on job creation is more dangerous to the national economy and the nation’s credit rating than are high deficits because lack of jobs keeps consumer demand and tax revenues too low.
Our job is to represent the majority of the American people, tell the truth about what’s happening in our economy, and keep pushing for job creation ideas that will put people back to work. They can talk about deep cuts, austerity, upper-class tax cuts and spreading the pain around all it wants. We’re here saying there’s a way to turn things around that doesn’t hurt working families. Congress needs to hear this more often instead of listening to the same tired Beltway conventional wisdom about helping the wealthy first.
Photo used under a Creative Commons license from flickr user matmcdermott.