What's Romney's solution to our economic crisis?

It’s worth keeping in mind, whether or not it has any political force, that Romney is not offering a plausible solution to the crisis. If you define an economic plan as a proposal to do things that are a specific response to the crisis and not just long-term changes that he would favor under any economic circumstances, then Romney has no economic plan. His plan is to benefit from the short-term business cycle in order to implement long-term policy changes that Republicans would favor even if the economy was humming along.

Indeed, if you think about it, having a real proposal to boost the short-term economy would be counterproductive to Romney’s chances of winning. Romney’s advisers — and, when speaking off the cuff, Romney himself — all believe in a basic Keynesian view of the world. They advocate that short-term increases in the deficit will boost demand and increase growth. If Romney came out with a plan like that, Obama could just grab hold of it and demand that Congress pass it (and Republicans would be hard-pressed to explain why they were voting down their own nominee’s plan.) Romney could try to pair it with long-term changes Democrats would hate, but Obama could just pick out the short-term stuff and punt on the long-term parts. And if a plan like that passed, it would boost the economy and harm Romney. So he won’t do it.

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