From my favorite redheaded reporter:
By the time Republicans have to face voters in November, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) predicts the economy will “be performing better.” There’s a good chance he’s right. The global economy has been on an upswing for the past year. Even before the tax bill, most experts had been predicting the momentum would continue into 2018 and 2019 with more jobs, more business investment and higher wages.
Now massive tax cuts are likely to come, too. Republicans in the House and Senate have both passed tax bills, and they are about to meet to iron out their differences and pass a final version that can go to President Trump’s desk.
Typically, the U.S. government doesn’t pump more stimulus into the economy when it’s this healthy, but that’s what the tax plan from Trump and congressional Republicans would do, at least for a year or two. The result could end up being an economy on steroids heading into the 2018 and 2020 elections. Unemployment, already at a 16-year low, could easily fall below 4 percent for the first time since the dot-com era. And growth, solidly above 3 percent in since April, could easily top 4 percent for a quarter or two next year.
The benefits of the Republican tax plan are front-loaded, most analysts say, which probably will help the GOP in the 2018 and 2020 elections. Many of the less palatable things — tax cuts that expire for the middle class after 2025, deficits expected to hit $1 trillion over a decade and probable spending cuts to the social safety net — won’t kick in until later.
Democrats have tried to cast the bill as a “scam” that is heavily titled toward the wealthy and corporations. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) called it the “end of the world” on Monday. But that messaging will be a hard sell if the economy is humming.
There’s more at the original, but it’s easy to see why I appreciate Miss Long’s reporting: she presented the story in an unbiased manner, telling readers what the Republicans hope to accomplish politically, their aspirations for the tax cut bill’s effects, and pointing out — further down than what I quoted — the potential downsides for the tax bill.
Miss long mentioned that the bill is expected to increase the deficit, and add up to $1.5 trillion more to the national debt, in ten years, than would have been the case without it. The greater deficit spending is the sole reason I have opposed the bill.
But there’s more: as we have pointed out previously, it has been a long time since the last recession, and none of the estimates on economic growth being used factor in the probability of a recession happening.
The longest we have gone without a recession since the end of the Depression is 10 years; if we match that ten-year-span, the next recession would begin in the third quarter of 2019. Not only would that foul up the projected deficits/national debt projections, but it would torpedo whatever plans the GOP has for using the tax cut bill to their electoral advantage in 2020. For the US to go into the 2020 elections without a recession having occurred would mean that we’d have to break that ten-year-record, and go 11½ years (eleven years and two quarters) between the official end of the last recession and the next one.
Of course, that would be the case whether or not the tax cut bill is passed.