Center for American Progress Action

STATEMENT: CAP Action’s David Madland Responds to Empty Economic Rhetoric in Tonight’s First Republican Debate
Press Statement

STATEMENT: CAP Action’s David Madland Responds to Empty Economic Rhetoric in Tonight’s First Republican Debate

Washington, D.C. — David Madland, Managing Director of the Economic Policy team and the Director of the American Worker Project at the Center for American Progress Action Fund, released the following statement after tonight’s Republican debate highlighted how new rhetoric from GOP candidates cannot overshadow the harmful reality of the impacts of their policies.

Tonight, as expected, we heard 10 Republicans try to shift their rhetoric around the economy, from their typical failed trickle-down ideas to talking about key issues such as wage stagnation and lack of opportunity. Unfortunately, the new rhetoric doesn’t match the reality of the impacts of out-of-date policies that direct the benefits of the recovery to the wealthiest at the expense of the middle class and low-income workers.

Especially in Ohio, where tonight’s debate was held, the middle class has been squeezed for decades, with a declining share of income coinciding with anti-worker policies from conservatives. Tonight’s debate was more of the same from each of the GOP candidates, further underscoring their unwillingness to support policies that actually help middle-class families or make our economy work for everyone, not just the wealthy few.

Top facts from tonight’s debate:

  • Gov. Scott Walker showcased his leadership in Wisconsin, saying “the voters in Wisconsin elected me last year for the third time because they wanted someone who aimed high, not aimed low.” But in Walker’s Wisconsin, Wisconsin ranked 44th in the country for middle-class income growth.
  • Gov. Chris Christie went out of his way to praise his record of economic growth in New Jersey, touting that he “brought the budget into balance with no tax increases.” But employment grew twice as fast in other states than it did in New Jersey since he became governor.
  • Sen. Marco Rubio (FL) pushed his tax plan. But, if enacted, the Rubio plan would be a massive, costly tax giveaway to the wealthiest Americans, while slashing $2.4 trillion in revenue and ballooning the budget deficit.

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For more information on this topic or to speak with an expert, contact Benton Strong at [email protected] or 202.481.8142.