Instead of lying to the American people about their role in the sequester cuts by pinning the blame for job losses on the GOP, Democrats should ask why their party insists on waging war against job creators by dreaming up ways to scare away jobs. Are they fearful that a real economic recovery will make job seekers less reliant on handouts, the pillar of the Democratic Party’s recovery plan (see: Why a Recovering Economy Could Be Bad for Democrats)?
Anti-job legislation forces job creators to stop hiring.
Anti-job legislation doesn’t have to become law to be damaging. When word gets out about the newest plan for Washington to extract money from employers the news will figure into hiring plans long before an anti-job bill makes it to the House or Senate floor. Businesses have to look ahead. The fact that midterm elections are next year won’t be lost on employers worrying about their bottom line.
Next year will also bring businesses the Affordable Care Act’s costs, fines, and penalties. Talk of raising the minimum wage persists (see: Guaranteed Hourly Wage Scam Burns Working Families), dovetailing with threats of immigration legislation that will put work permits in the hands of job seekers without skills. Threats of tax increases were resurrected last week with the announcement of the president’s newest budget scheme. In the midst of all the uncertainty, Democrats still feel it necessary to up the anti-job rhetoric by proposing legislation that threatens employers.
Mandatory benefits for part-time workers?
Do lawmakers understand that the long-term unemployed and underemployed are going to stay that way? Sure they do. That’s probably why Illinois Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky has been talking about justice while promoting H.R. 675, her Part-Time Worker Bill of Rights. In addition to requiring employers to provide health insurance benefits for their part-time employees,
This bill extends job-protected family and medical leave to part-time workers under the Family and Medical Leave Act. This bill would allow part-time workers to enroll and increase pro-rated benefits in their employers’ pension plan.¹
Employers who don’t pony up for health benefits would pay an employer responsibility penalty,² a good reason for businesses to dump their part-time workers if the bill or anything like it is ever seriously considered.
Fairness legislation means punishing employers.
“Fairness” is a terrible word. It means someone is going to pay more than they should for something we don’t need or want. 2013 brought us S. 84, the Paycheck Fairness Act and S. 168, the Fair Pay Act of 2013. Both bills insert government into the hiring process and threaten employers with discrimination claims. Nothing speaks to the war against job creators like opening the door to lawsuits against businesses. When business owners are threatened with having to ignore skills and hire on the basis of who is least likely to sue, they will decide that hiring is best deferred to another time.
Unemployed or underemployed? Job creators found other ways to get their work done.
The years have passed. Employers have moved on. The most distressing figure in the monthly jobs reports is the number of long-term unemployed. That number is not going anywhere. The figure for the underemployed, part-time workers who can’t find full-time work, is a shameful 7.6 million.³ The number of Americans in the labor force is the lowest in decades.
Nancy Pelosi’s trite response to March’s embarrassing jobs numbers dialed the clock back to 2009:
Today’s jobs report makes it clear: there is no time to waste to grow our economy and put people to work.4
This problem is no longer about time. It’s about waging war against job creators, turning them away from hiring and forcing them to find alternatives amidst threats from Capitol Hill. Washington may not care what it does with its money, but employers do. That’s why those jobs numbers are where they are.