By Brent Budowsky - 07/01/10 01:16 AM EDT
Democrats should wage a cavalry-charge battle for the workers of the nation with a Big Bang proposal to create more jobs.
The continuing punishment of Main Street America, to be highlighted again in the jobs report to be issued Friday, will drive the jobs issue to overwhelm all issues in 2010.
Before July 4 the Democrats should bring up again every component of the latest jobs bill. Every hour of the recess, and every day until the election, Democrats should fuse the issue of jobs for Americans being destroyed with the wrongheaded policies and partisan obstructions of Republicans.
In addition to the pending jobs proposals:
Democrats should propose a one-time Big Bang tax cut of $10,000 for small and medium-size businesses that increase payrolls in the next three to six months. They should pay for it with a one-time surtax on bailed-out banks and Wall Street firms. They should give voters a clear program. They should give Republicans a stark choice. They should make them vote on it, day after day, week after week, if necessary.
Democrats should run millions of dollars of television ads in the states of Republican senators from Massachusetts and Maine, among others.
Democrats should say to Sens. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine), Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Scott Brown (R-Mass.): Either you are moderates or obstructionists. Either you stand with Wall Street or workers.
On the financial reform bill, Brown threatened to kill the bill unless the Congress did favors for bankers and cut spending for jobs. This is not what Brown had promised in his campaign.
Democrats should use the Big Bang jobs campaign to dramatize the Republican obstructionism against jobs through the abuse of the filibuster of a magnitude unprecedented in the history of the republic.
Democrats should tap the anger toward Washington that inevitably follows when Republicans oppose even major jobs bills and willfully destroy the ability of the United States Senate to govern effectively.
The weak ADP jobless report released Wednesday, the significant consumer-confidence decline announced by the Conference Board on Tuesday and the major jobs report coming Friday will intensify the passion and power of the No. 1 issue in the 2010 election: jobs.
The risk of double-dip recession is real. The certainty of the punishing pain of the jobless crisis appears destined to continue indefinitely.
A new Pew Research report finds that 55 percent of the entire workforce of the nation has suffered during the current recession — which 54 percent believe continues today — through lost jobs or lost wages. Official Washington fails to even minimally grasp the pain, frustration and fear when more than half the workforce of the nation has been cruelly and personally damaged by the weakness and unfairness of this economy.
Democrats should go to the country in this election and hear the people’s hurt, fight for their hopes and heed their message. To answer Republicans with a ferocity and determination Democrats have failed to show since winning the presidency and controlling the Congress.
The cruel and unusual punishment of jobless Americans must end. Never again should jobless benefits to hurting and frightened jobless Americans be held hostage to the partisan politics of Republican obstructionism.
Never again should states and cities that are nearly bankrupt, in large measure from policies favored by the same Republicans who obstruct solutions today, be forced to suffer the pain that is imposed by every new filibuster.
If Republicans want to wage a war against teachers who educate our children, police who protect our streets and firefighters who safeguard our homes, Democrats should fight them every hour of every day on the floor of Congress and say, as Clint Eastwood said: Go ahead, make my day.
It is time for Democrats to fight, Republicans to choose and voters to decide.
Budowsky was an aide to former Sen. Lloyd Bentsen and Bill Alexander, then chief deputy majority whip of the House. He holds an LL.M. degree in international financial law from the London School of Economics. He can be read on The Hill’s Pundits Blog and reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.