Former President Bill Clinton poured cold water on the Republican Party’s jobs rhetoric last night in a speech at the Democratic National Convention, telling the nation that in the 50 years since John F. Kennedy took office, the vast majority of private sector jobs have been created under Democratic administrations. In those 52 years, as Bloomberg reported in May, 42 million of the new private sector jobs were created during 24 years of Democratic presidencies versus just 24 million under Republicans.
Clinton highlighted the statistic last night as evidence that the Republican vision for the economy, which ignores that “poverty, discrimination, and ignorance restrict growth,” won’t provide the recovery the American economy needs:
CLINTON: Well, since 1961, for 52 years now, the Republicans have held the White House 28 years, the Democrats 24. In those 52 years, our private economy has produced 66 million private sector jobs. So, what’s the job score? Republicans, 24 million, Democrats, 42 (million). Now, there’s a reason for this. It turns out that advancing equal opportunity and economic empowerment is both morally right and good economics. Why? Because poverty, discrimination, and ignorance restrict growth. When you stifle human potential, when you don’t invest in new ideas, it doesn’t just cut off the people who are affected, it hurts us all.
The GOP’s supply-side economic policies, which rely on tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy, have failed to boost economic growth for more than three decades, a point Clinton made while hammering Republican nominee Mitt Romney’s plan to push through a tax cut four times the size of George W. Bush’s. “We simply can’t afford to give the reins of government to someone who will double down on trickle down,” Clinton said.
Clinton isn’t alone in analyzing the GOP’s economic failures: in July, 40 economists looked at the Republican Party’s plans and determined that it had abandoned economic reality. During the GOP primaries, economic professors said the party’s plans couldn’t pass a basic economics class.