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Morici: Obama's Policies Are 'Not Going to Fix the American Economy'

By David Nelson and Dan Weil   |   Friday, 05 Apr 2013 02:55 PM

Friday’s jobs data indicate the economy is slowing down, and President Barack Obama is a major part of the problem, says Peter Morici, professor of international business at the University of Maryland.

Non-farm payrolls rose only 88,000 in March. “It’s a very serious matter to have less than 100,000 jobs,” Morici told Newsmax TV in an exclusive interview.

“[There’s] this mythology in the White House that somehow you can raise taxes and not reduce jobs growth, although the Republicans believe that you can cut spending without reducing jobs growth,” he said. “It’s not surprising that we have a lousy jobs report.”

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Obama is operating in a political manner, Morici said.

“Until the president decides he’s not running for president anymore and stops politicking the issue and starts seriously addressing the problems that are holding up the economy, he may be able to elevate somewhat his popularity ratings, but he’s not going to fix the American economy.”

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The 24,000 decline in retail jobs during March was ominous, Morici said. “That would indicate that the folks that run the department stores and the malls are expecting or even experiencing slower traffic in March and that will spill over into April.”

The payroll tax increase may have caught up to spending for the middle class, and the income tax increase may have done so for the wealthy, Morici said. Both were implemented Jan. 1

“Higher payroll taxes on working Americans, punitive taxes on job creators, nowhere have I learned either from my liberal or conservative professors that raising taxes in a weak recovery would create more jobs,” Morici said.

He compares Obama’s handling of the economy to President George W. Bush. “They were both equally poor,” producing economic growth of about 2.1 percent, Morici said.

“The real problem in America, to be bipartisan, is we had one president who was too lazy to give a damn [Bush] and one president who really doesn’t give a damn at all [Obama],” he said. “The reality is that there are things in America that need to be fixed, structural things in the economy, and pursuing social issues doesn’t fix that. You can’t run the economy like a Chicago ward."

Morici also sees similarities between Obama and House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan. He equates Ryan’s proposal to turn Medicare into a voucher program with Obama’s proposal to limit Social Security cost-of-living increases.

“Mr. Obama wants to worm away at their Social Security benefits, and Mr. Ryan wants to worm away at their Medicare benefits, both to balance the budget,” Morici said.

“Neither wants to really reform healthcare in the manner, say, that the Germans have. They have a private provider system, and they spend 12 percent of GDP on healthcare. We spend 18 percent.”

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