Mark Kirk isn’t the only
Illinois Republican dishing out bogus anti-stimulus talking points
to local reporters. Arguing against the current economic recovery
package on FOX Chicago Sunday yesterday, Rep. Peter Roskam
attempted to convince viewers that the House Republicans...
Mark Kirk isn’t the only Illinois Republican dishing out bogus anti-stimulus talking points to local reporters. Arguing against the current economic recovery package on FOX Chicago Sunday yesterday, Rep. Peter Roskam attempted to convince viewers that the House Republicans’ alternative plan (PDF) -- focused almost entirely on tax cuts -- is more cost-effective than the package favored by Congressional Democrats. Watch it:
ROSKAM: The better way is to lower the tax rates broadly. There was an alternative plan that was put forward that President Obama’s own chairman of his economic council of advisers [Christina Romer], her evaluation and her formula looked at this and said, you know what, this alternative plan actually in two years will create 6.2 million jobs. Now put that in context -- that’s twice as much job creation at half the cost.
We’re going to outsource our rebuttal to Wonk Room, which last month ably knocked down the GOP’s argument that Romer's research supports their assertion that “tax cuts actually provide more immediate relief and more jobs” than direct spending:
The Republican statement cites a 2007 paper by Romer (PDF) on the economic benefits of tax cuts. But as noted across the blogosphere, Romer’s conclusion was that the economic environment complicates the assessment of policy changes, not that tax cuts are the most effective way to create jobs:
“What Romer and Romer’s study (and their earlier work on monetary policy) shows is not that tax cuts are uniquely effective, but rather that failing to consider the reasons for policy changes leads to underestimates of the effects of all types of stimulus.”
A more recent paper (PDF) Romer coauthored concluded that government investment create more jobs than tax cuts. As this table that Romer and Jared Bernstein compiled shows, government spending has a stronger multiplier effect (PDF) and is therefore stronger stimulus:
Romer has herself hit back against the Republican talking point, telling economist Brad DeLong that “the Republican House analysis is flat wrong in its claim that the House Republican stimulus is more effective.”
The next time Fox Chicago Sunday decides to have Roskam on, they should first get up to speed on the latest GOP spin and push back when the false claims start flying. If that's too much to ask, perhaps they could host someone from the opposing party to provide a contrary view After all, he’s fudged the numbers on their program before.
Ed. note: We would link to the full video of the Roskam segment, but can't find it on Fox Chicago's website. You can find it, however, on Roskam's YouTube channel.