Stephen Moore: Biden anti-business agenda would wreck the economy

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Op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author.

The Democrats are rewriting history, celebrating the Obama record on the economy as if these were the salad days for America. In Washington parlance, that is called “misremembering.” The reality is that the Obama tax-and-regulate agenda led to the weakest economic recovery from a recession since the Great Depression.

This week, the Census Bureau released its economic report — the gold standard of measuring the finances of American families.

In President Donald Trump’s first three years in office, real median family income for Americans rose by more than $6,400. In Obama’s EIGHT years in office, the increase in incomes was closer to $4,000. Black Americans made more income gains in three years under Trump than eight years under Obama.

But Biden’s agenda is to return to a regulation binge — in banking, finance, environment, consumer affairs and health care.

The rumors are swirling that Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a leading Biden economic policy adviser and confidant, could be Treasury secretary or regulatory czar.

The radical Warren policy proposals that Biden has now adopted, including entirely carbon emission-free electricity (with a loss of up to 5 million blue-collar jobs) and the strictest financial regulations ever. Stocks and retirement portfolios could take a beating.

For example, Warren and many Biden economists are advocating adding to the Fed’s current dual mandate of promoting stable prices and maximum employment. Now they want a mandate that will use the Fed monetary policy to equalize incomes. How? By printing money? Forcing companies to pay a superminimum wage?

Retirement savings of American mom-and-pop investors and financial traders of all shapes and sizes could be at risk if independent analyses of credit rating agencies are compromised by government mandates. The Biden Democrats want the feds to intervene in these bond ratings to promote social justice, environmentalism and other goals that may be worthy but that steer retirement and other investment funds away from the highest returns.

Trump wants health care freedom that gives patients and doctors more say of what kind of insurance they can buy and what kind of procedures are best for them. Biden wants to double down on the Affordable Care Act, which has driven up health costs and prohibited Americans from purchasing more affordable health plans.

The costs of all these “consumer protections” fall hardest on the lowest-income families. Casey Mulligan of the University of Chicago estimates that the Biden regulatory stranglehold and his ban on fracking would reduce the incomes of the poorest households by about 15%. The average household would see losses of about 4% by going back to the Obama regulatory regime.

Socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders has suggested that the Biden administration would be the most progressive and radical in history if it takes office. He may be called “Lunch Bucket Joe,” but for blue-collar America, the Biden agenda would be a real blow to the wallet.

Stephen Moore is a senior fellow at the Heritage Foundation and an economic consultant with FreedomWorks. He is the co-author of “Trumponomics: Inside the America First Plan to Revive the American Economy.”

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Stephen Moore

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