It is critical that the United States spend more on research and innovation, particularly on the development of new cutting-edge drugs. The current economic crisis makes it even more essential to push through necessary reforms to increase innovation in American society. Innovation and entrepreneurship can reignite the economy and create jobs, while simultaneously slashing the deficit and exhibiting fiscal discipline.
Economy & Budget
As we work to recover from the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, both Republicans and Democrats have offered plans for our economy. Republicans' own Congressional campaign chair admitted that they intend to return America to the "exact same agenda" of the Bush years -- the agenda that got our economy into this mess. Democrats, on the other hand, believe that when more products are made in America, more families will be able to Make It In America. That's why Democrats are pursuing the Make It In America agenda, a plan to create middle-class jobs by rebuilding our manufacturing sector. Reinvigorating manufacturing will be at the top of Democrats' agenda for a long time to come, and it will remain a top priority in the next Congress, where we expect to retain the majority -- because Americans still look to Democrats to strengthen the middle class.
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke delivered the following remarks on Monday at the Annual Meeting of the Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council, Providence, Rhode Island:
The recent deep recession and the subsequent slow recovery have created severe budgetary pressures not only for many households and businesses, but for governments as well. Indeed, in the United States, governments at all levels are grappling not only with the near-term effects of economic weakness, but also with the longer-run pressures that will be generated by the need to provide health care and retirement security to an aging population.
Last week, the Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act (H.R. 2378) passed the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 348-79, with significant bipartisan support of 249 Democrats and 99 Republicans. This agreement between parties—rare these days--sends a strong signal to currency manipulators such as the People’s Republic of China that the United States will no longer abide prohibited trade practices that seek to undercut the U.S. economy to gain advantage in the world market.
Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.) and Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) introduced legislation in Washington, D.C. to establish a Trade Deficit Commission that will be assigned the task of developing a trade policy plan to eliminate the trade deficit. The Senators say establishing this commission would be an important first step in making a serious commitment to stopping the flood of American jobs moving to foreign countries:
The Rural America Solutions Group, co-chaired by Rep. Frank Lucas, Ranking Member of the House Agriculture Committee, concluded a forum yesterday aimed at highlighting the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) massive effort to implement and propose unprecedented, overreaching, and burdensome regulations. Seven panelists from across the country offered perspective and real-life examples on how these regulations are hurting job creation and economic growth.
When President Obama and the 111th Congress took their oaths of office, America was facing the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. We were losing almost 800,000 jobs per month. Over a quarter of the personal wealth in America had been wiped out. We were in a record amount of debt. From the day we began our work, Congress had this overriding goal: stopping the freefall, creating jobs, and building a solid foundation for the future.
The imbalances in international trade, and in particular trade between China and the United States, have prompted many to demand a realignment of the Chinese yuan and the American dollar. Since we are running a huge trade deficit with China the call now is for a stronger yuan and a weaker dollar. This trade imbalance problem will not be solved so easily.
Today, the Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) Emergency Contingency Fund will expire because a minority in Congress blocked the extension proposed by the president. This will put up to 100,000 jobs in jeopardy, raising unemployment and potentially even cost the government more money in additional public assistance funds. A strong commitment that the program will be restored when Congress returns could still save some of these jobs, and provide crucial help to workers, businesses and communities.
A significant portion of the persistent gender gap in earnings, among workers with equivalent qualifications and in similar jobs, is attributable to parenthood. The recent Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, “New Evidence on the Gender Pay Gap for Women and Mothers in Management,” shows that compared with male managers, women managers are far less likely to be married, to be parents, and have smaller family sizes.