When Has The Republican Party Been The Party Of Small Government?
What DO Republican presidents Reagan, Bush I, and Bush II have in common that Obama doesn’t?
Total government grew under those presidents after they faced
recessions. By contrast, federal, state, and local government has
declined by more than half a million workers in the last
Big government ain’t what it used to be.
The graph above comes courtesy of the Economic Policy Institute.
Since the recession officially ended in January 2009, the economy has
bid goodbye to 584,000 government jobs (private sector employment is up
by 2.8 million). That's a roughly a 2 percent drop. Though the federal
workforce actually grew between 2009 and 2011, it's now shrinking at the
fastest rate since the 1950s, as my colleague Derek Thompson has written.
By comparison, government payrolls increased by at least a full
percentage point during the thirty months after each of the last major
recessions, while Republican presidents presided over the economy.
difficult to measure precisely what effect these losses ave had on the
unemployment rate. The EPI argues that "these extra government jobs
would have helped preserve about 500,000 private sector jobs." I'm not
honestly in a position to critique their math. But I can say this much:
there are now 196,000 more unemployed government workers than at the
beginning of the recovery. The remainder have either found jobs in other
industries, in which case they've displaced other applicants, or have
left the job force.
It's sad because it was preventable. More
aid to states could have kept them from cutting back so severely. That
would have meant more people paying taxes, more people able to keep up
with payments on their homes, and more people shopping in stores. The
individuals who lost their jobs were teachers and firefighters, trash
collectors and police fighters, and yes, probably a fairly large
assortment of bureaucrats responsible for running that sometimes creaky
machine called government. And our economy is poorer for their loss.
So please, tell which republican government believed in smaller government and followed small government policies.
See Votes by State
News & Politics