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Republicans Won't Do Stimulus Because They're Deliberately Wrecking The Economy

They want to demand austerity if, as seems likely, there's a Biden administration.

Those of us old enough to have lived through several rounds of this understand what's going on, but we have to put this in perspective for the younger readers: The Republicans don't want a stimulus deal because they want to destroy the economy for an incoming Democratic administration.

We've seen this over and over again. Republicans don't fix things, they only break them so the rest of us can't have nice things. Greg Sargent at the Washington Post writes:

The Bloomberg report offers this remarkable clue:

A GOP strategist who has been consulting with Senate campaigns said Republicans have been carefully laying the groundwork to restrain a Biden administration on federal spending and the budget deficit by talking up concerns about the price tag for another round of virus relief. The thinking, the strategist said, is that it would be very hard politically to agree on spending trillions more now and then in January suddenly embrace fiscal restraint. This comes from an anonymous source. But it accords with what all our intuitions and our understanding of recent U.S. political history tell us. Republicans almost certainly suspect Trump will lose even with a big stimulus and already hope to put an incoming President Joe Biden in a fiscal straitjacket, saddling him with the terrible politics of a grueling recovery.

A big package now under a GOP president would make that harder to get away with. That’s bad enough, but the evolving strategy here may be worse than this suggests. The calculation is probably not just about avoiding the hypocrisy of spending big now and embracing austerity under a Democratic president.

It’s also likely that a big package now would put the economy in a somewhat better position early next year, when Biden (should he win) would take over. This, too, is probably what Republicans want to avoid.

Indeed, as Eric Levitz points out, if Republicans can scuttle a robust package now, that would hand Biden a “deepening recession.” If Republicans hold the Senate and can block big stimulus measures at that point, Levitz continues, “Biden’s presidency would be over before it starts.”

We have to win big, and we have to get the Senate, people. Dig deep, fight every single race.

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