Bobby Jindal’s destroying LA with supply side economics
Kansas state Gov. Sam Brownback and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker aren’t the only Republicans turning their states’ budgets into an economic nightmare with their irresponsible budget-destroying, job-growth-killing, wealth-inequality-growing right wing strategies. Now, Gov. Bobby Jindal is joining their ranks as an utter failure as Louisiana falls into a $1.6 billion budget shortfall.
The GOP leadership in these states have been running a dangerous Reaganomics experiment that is becoming detrimental to the residents in red states. As I’ve reported, Gov. Brownback cut income taxes on the wealthy and business owners in Kansas, which resulted in billions of dollars in lost revenue and has caused a multi-million dollar shortfall for Kansas’ budget this year, and in years to come, the budget is expected to be in the red by BILLIONS. Gov. Jindal has also been watching the surplus he inherited turn into astounding debt because he has refused to increase taxes in his state.
The real kicker is how much these right wingers like to pat themselves on the back for being the party of “fiscal responsibility,” yet their states seem to slide further into the red with each year of their leadership.
When Gov. Bobby Jindal was elected Governor of Louisiana in 2008, his state was at a $1 billion surplus. After federal money for Hurricane Katrina and Rita came pouring in, and oil prices were at a high, the state’s finances were looking healthy.
Jindal threw his support behind the largest tax cut in the state’s history. However, with lack of revenue from taxes, the state’s coffers began to dry up. Normally, any fiscally responsible politician would see the need to increase taxes once more, but instead, Jindal made deep cuts to health care and higher education in an effort to decrease state spending. Needless to say, the economy didn’t equalize after the spending cut and the residents of Louisiana are seeing their services and thriving economy dry up, all while the governor promises that success will eventually “trickle down.” The unemployment rate sits at 6.7 percent, which is well above the national average of 5.7 percent. When Jindal took office the unemployment rate was a mere 3.8 percent. Time and time again evidence shows that low taxes for the wealthy don’t result in job creation or higher wages.
Jindal is expected to run for President in 2016, but with a 56 percent disapproval rating in his own state, that dream is as far away as another surplus for the Bayou state. The budget deficit is expected to flounder in the billions for years to come.
But Gov. Jindal calls the budget shortfall a success and not an unexpected outcome of his fiscal policy.
The Louisiana governor said:
We made an explicit decision and commitment that we were going to cut the government, the public sector economy, as opposed to the private sector economy. We made the intentional policy decision we think it’d be better to shrink government and cut taxes. That’s unusual for Louisiana.
Last month, I reported that conservatives such as Walker and Brownback are purposefully tanking their states’ economies in order to cut government programs, and evidence shows that this is indeed the case. So, in terms of “success,” Jindal is a GOP darling even with a floundering state economy.
Not all Republicans agree with Jindal’s economic policy, LA state Treasurer John Kennedy, a Republican, said:
I’m hoping he will multitask and spend some of his time with us. I’m a numbers guy. We have serious, serious problems with our budget. For seven years, we have spent more than we’ve taken in.
For the students, and those who are in need of health care, it’s a projected nightmare. Louisiana is already one of the worst states for people living in poverty; 19.8 percent of LA residents live below the poverty line. In terms of poverty in the nation, they are ranked the third worst state.
That means that as the budget debt increases, services to help these people stay afloat decreases, and if there is anything the GOP loathes more than President Obama, it’s poor people with full bellies.