For the last four years, our economy has grown at just 0.8% per year. As a result of this anemic growth, 23 million Americans are struggling to find work, and millions more are being denied a fair opportunity to achieve the American dream.
Economic growth these past four years has been a small fraction of historic levels: since World War II, our economy has averaged 3.3% growth each year. Until economic growth returns, none of our economic problems can be solved. Improving the lives of the middle class, protecting our seniors, empowering people to escape poverty, and reining in the federal debt…all depend on economic growth.
The very first priority of every elected official—Democrat and Republican—should be restoring economic growth, so we can ensure continued strength, prosperity, and opportunity for the next generations.
Obamacare does precisely the opposite. It is already hurting small businesses, reducing the hours Americans are allowed to work, forcing employers to drop coverage, and leading to substantial increases in healthcare premiums—especially for young people. And, if Obamacare is fully implemented, it will create an even further drag on the economy, killing jobs and making it harder for those struggling to climb the economic ladder.
In my view, Obamacare should be fully repealed, and I have introduced legislation to do so.
At a minimum, however, it should not be implemented at time when our economy is struggling so mightily, at a time when its implementation could push us into a full recession.
Therefore, when the Senate votes on the Continuing Resolution, I intend to offer a “Restore Growth First” amendment which will delay funding of Obamacare. I believe we should continue to delay such funding at least until economic growth returns to historic averages, and I intend to object to consideration of any Continuing Resolution that does not include a vote to delay funding of Obamacare.
Last quarter, our economy grew just 0.1%. Getting growth back, getting Americans back to work, should be our top priority, and we should all roll up our sleeves and work in a bipartisan way to get that done.