The puzzle pieces continue to fall into place to support the idea that a Mitt Romney presidency would be great for the economy.Back in the Spring, we pointed out that if you believe the economy needs more fiscal stimulus (which is to say: “deficits”) in order to thrive, that Romney would be the better choice than Obama.
If Obama wins, he’s likely to come up against an even more hostile Congress than he has right now.
On the other hand, if Romney wins, the GOP will quickly forget about its lower-spending, anti-deficit stance. That’s because parties in the majority don’t care about deficits. It’s strictly an out-of-power issue. Once Romney is in power, his main focus will be on winning re-election in 2016, and that’s not going to happen with fiscal contraction and an economic slowdown.
In fact, Mitt Romney doesn’t even talk anymore about fiscal contraction. He just talks about tax cuts, without even talking about the revenue neutral aspect. This is really welcome news.
As evidence that fiscal constraint is purely an out-of-party phenomenon, consider that Barack Obama once called it “unpatriotic” to raise the debt ceiling under George W. Bush.
Even the selection of Paul Ryan as Vice President fits this thesis nicely, since Ryan will be a perfect credible emisarry to pitch Romney’s inevitable stimulus to credulous conservatives.
The next reason to think Romney would be great for the economy is his advisors on monetary policy, who tend to be fairly radical. Were Greg Mankiw the Fed chief, he’d be liable to take stimulus measures that would make Ben Bernanke blush.
So from a fiscal and a monetary policy Romney is the way to go: Not only would he be pro stimulus on both, the GOP in Congress would get much softer on the issue, and actually probably forget completely about fiscal consolidation.
But of course, there is always that concern that Romney would be “held to task” by the Tea Party/grassroots types in his party. Maybe this time, rather than rolling over for the president, they’d force Romney to actually follow through with small government ideas.
The GOP convention is telling us that this isn’t an issue.
Tim Carney has a great report explaining how Romney and his people rolled the grassroots activists at the convention, stiffing conservatives on changes to the rules. You can read all the details here about what went down, but as Carney puts it, “it was a railroading.”
So even before the election (and actually even before the technical nomination) Romney is railroading the grassroots.
Photo: Tim Carney
Put it all together: Romney will be able to push fiscal stimulus, will probably have good monetary policy, and doesn’t feel like he owes a lick to the grassroots.
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