GOP U.S. Senate candidate Pat Toomey (PA) attended a rally at the Middletown Grange Fairgrounds Wednesday, joining Republicans running for many other local offices to speak about his views on a wide range of issues.
At one point, Toomey explained what he thinks ails the economy. He claims his Democratic Party opponents have done “serious damage” to the U.S. economy, and then asks the audience to “think of what we’ve witnessed in the last 18 months or so.” Toomey then listed off a series of legislative actions, including “serial bailouts of failing companies” and “spending money on a scale we’ve never seen before.” At the end of his list, he concluded, “You add in cap and trade, card check, government-run health care, is it any wonder we haven’t had an economic recovery? Is it any wonder we haven’t had growth? How hard is this to figure out?”:
TOOMEY: But they’re doing some serious damage. If you think of what we’ve witnessed in just the last 18 months or so, serial bailouts of failing companies, nationalizing whole industries, spending money on a scale we’ve never seen before, deficits and debts that are completely unsustainable, you add in cap and trade, card check, government-run health care, is it any wonder we haven’t had an economic recovery? Is it any wonder we don’t have job growth? How hard is this to figure out?
The problem with Toomey’s list is that it includes bills that haven’t even been legisated into law yet. “Government-run health care” presumably refers to the health law passed this past spring by Congress, but the legislation that Toomey is referring to as “cap and trade” and “card check” haven’t even gotten close to getting the votes they need to be made into law. “Cap and trade” refers to the American Clean Energy and Security Act, which, while narrowly passing the House of Representatives in 2009, is widely considered to be dead in the U.S. Senate. “Card check” refers to a provision in the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) that would allow workers to form a union if they could get half the workers to sign a card stating their intention to organize. Despite being a top priority of the country’s labor movement, EFCA has been in limbo for years, and the card check provision is widely considered to be unable to garner enough votes to pass, and is likely dead.
If Toomey is resorting to blaming the lack of job growth on legislation that hasn’t even passed yet, economics and basic political facts must indeed by very “hard” for him to “figure out.”