Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Republicans, spinning wildly, claim credit for positive economic news

The question is, do Republicans really believe their own propaganda?

It took less than three weeks for the new Republican Congressional leadership to claim credit for an apparent economic upturn.

An aide to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Brian Patrick, emailed reporters [yesterday] morning:

THERE ARE THE JOBS: Republicans Prevent Massive Tax Increase, Economy Begins to Improve: U.S. companies plan to hire more workers in the coming months amid growing optimism over the economy, a quarterly survey released Monday showed, providing further evidence that the jobs market is turning around. In the fourth-quarter poll of 84 companies by the National Association for Business Economics found 42% of companies interviewed, ranging from manufacturing to finance, expect to boost jobs in the six months ahead. That's up from 29% in the first three months of 2010. Only 7% in the latest survey predict they will shed jobs in the coming six months, down from 23% at the start of last year.

The Dow Jones wire story Patrick linked makes no mention of the GOP.

Do they? Maybe, maybe not. Obviously, they're trying to score political points by taking credit for any good news they can find.

It's just so transparent how full of shit they are.

As Steve Benen remarks, "[e]ven by the standards of the most shameless hack, this is farcical. Worse, it's part of a growing pattern":

To reiterate a point from last week, this really is fascinating. The economy started growing again in 2009, with the stimulus giving the economy a boost. We saw growth continue throughout 2010 -- even after those rascally Democrats passed health care reform and Wall Street reform -- while Republicans said Dems were killing the economy.

And now we have several Republican leaders arguing that the same tax rates that were in place last year (and the year before that, and the year before that), coupled with economic policies that haven't even been voted on, deserve the credit for more optimistic projections.

So to review, Republicans in the Bush era brought the global economy to the brink of catastrophic collapse; Obama and congressional Dems helped turn things around; and now those same Republicans whose policies failed want credit for Democratic successes.

I know some folks will find this persuasive, and maybe even some of these GOP officials have deluded themselves into believing their own rhetoric. But it doesn't make the argument any less ridiculous.

That's one word for it.

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