A decade after enacting massive tax cuts that blew a hole in the federal debt and failed to create job growth, Republicans are once again attempting to hitch the American economy to the supply-side wagon, promising that more tax cuts for the wealthiest individuals will trickle down to the middle- and lower-classes and create economic prosperity. The House GOP passed a full extension of the Bush tax cuts yesterday, a week after Senate Republicans tried and failed to do the same.
Economic evidence shows, however, that the GOP’s reliance on supply-side policies — that is, cutting taxes on businesses and the wealthy in hopes that prosperity for the 1 percent would eventually benefit the other 99 — haven’t worked. In fact, analyzing data from the last three decades, the Center for American Progress’ Michael Ettlinger and Michael Linden found that investment, productivity, employment, and overall economic growth were all stronger during the 1990s, when America took a decade-long hiatus from supply-side economics, than they were in the 1980s and 2000s:
This evidence isn’t totally lost on Republicans like Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI), a member of last year’s debt supercommittee who admitted that the Bush tax cuts didn’t lead to the job and economic growth his party had promised. But the Republican Party writ large remains attached to these policies, ignoring the economic consensus and proving that is ideology is, as former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland (D) said this week, “divorced from the real world.”