Many signs indicate that 2016 could be shaping up as a campaign dominated by the economy as a big point of focus by the candidates. Just a few short days into 2015, many candidates have already begun touting their economic plans and pointing out the issues currently facing many Americans, especially the middle class.

Report from State Column:

What other issue could take center stage during the 2016 presidential election in this economy?

Many non-candidates in the race have been focusing their aim towards jobs, economics, and the income disparity gap over the past weeks in a nod to what will most likely be the hot-button issue of the 2016 campaign.

They seem to be taking a cue from Elizabeth Warren, whose populist messages about the depravity of Wall Street have struck a chord with disenfranchised voters. However, as Warren is insistent she will stay on the sidelines throughout the 2016 race, there is a vacuum of rhetoric waiting to be filled by another charismatic politician.

“Voters, particularly in presidential contests, want their candidates to be able to answer in the affirmative the question, ‘Does this person understand the problems of people like me?”” said former Romney adviser Kevin Madden to the Associated Press. “This is a departure from the last campaign, where the focus was on drawing contrasts with the president and reminding voters what they didn’t like or shouldn’t like about Obama’s economic record.”

Hillary Clinton, who many have already anointed Democratic nominee, took the first shot on Friday when she broke her recent bout of silence and tweeted a critique of Congress. “Attacking financial reform is risky and wrong,” tweeted Clinton. “Better for Congress to focus on jobs and wages for middle class families.”

Not to be upstaged, Mitt Romney took to the podium later that day to address the Republican National Committee, where he announced three “pillars” on which he would base his campaign (if he decided to run, that is) two of which focus on the downtrodden American worker: opportunity for all and ending poverty in America. “Under President Obama, the rich have gotten richer, income inequality has gotten worse and there are more people in poverty than ever before,” said Romney.

As one political consultant famously said, it’s the economy, stupid. That may be true, but I’m also seeing signs that voters are becoming increasingly concerned with foreign policy and America’s response to terrorism more specifically. Obviously the recent terrorist attack in Paris coupled with the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has brought this issue front and center once again.


  1. Appealing to the “inequality of wealth” has been a staple of any Democrat that has run for office. From President Roosevelt’s New Deal to Sen. John Edwards “Two Country” speil. None of them however mention the economic repercussions of more regulations which eventually will be passed down to the middle and lower class through higher prices and loss of jobs. We simply have to look toward California to see the results of their grab bag of symbolism and empty rhetoric.

    Have you ever noticed that all progressive legislation to cure this problem goes through the government? Wealth redistribution or the current slogan “Unequal Income” will not in the long run be distributed with perfect effectiveness to the most deserving members of American society. Instead they will be used by politicians to buy a little more time for our failing public institutions, postponing a reckoning with unsustainable pension commitments, delaying necessary reforms in our entitlement system and propping up our education system that doesn’t match it’s cost. The story of the last three decades is not the story of a benevolent government starved of funds by selfish rich people or fanatical republicans. It is a story of a public sector that has constantly done less with more and more. Of a liberalism that has defended shovel ready jobs that were never there. Need I remind you of just which party has been running this country for the PAST 8 YEARS?

    • Bob…I take it that the picture of Hillary Clinton is a reference to the paid speaking circuit
      that is used by an uncountable number of politicians. She is not alone in demanding huge speaking fees. Hilary’s average fee is 200,000.00. While Rudy Giuliani, former mayor and presidential hopeful gets– $270,000.00. Somewhat better than Bill Clinton who averages $189,000 per event. Dick Cheney requires a payment of “$100,000, plus travel, hotel, security, and per diem expenses.” George W. Bush, receives $110,000 per engagement (has made $15 million since leaving office). Mitt Romney, who joked about being unemployed, made over $362,000 in speaking fees during this time. I searched but was unable to find one person in our political arena that does not collect speaking payments.

      • It’s nice to stick up for people but I can’t believe you don’t see the point here. The difference is Sec. Clinton and Sen. Warren are getting paid huge amounts of money to talk about “Income Inequality” the other politicians you mention aren’t. Obviously irony and hypocrisy isn’t an understandable trait when your parties intentions are empathy but ultimately deal in self serving needs.

        I’ll give “Tweedledum” approx. 1 hour to come to your defense.

        • Bob: I’m sure you mean me, but I’m not coming to anyone’s defense. I’m pointing out how illogical YOUR attack is.

          When you have someone like Elizabeth Warren or Warren Buffet saying, “I’m rich, tax me more, it’s only fair.” That’s pretty amazing.

          If she were poor and complaining, you might have some legitimacy.

          I’m just saying the “you don’t get to defend poor people because you’re not poor,” is just plain stupid. I like to point out stupid.

          The thing to remember is that politicians don’t take a vow of poverty. Unlike these religious leaders should, according to, you know, Jesus:

          T.D. Jakes–$18,000,000 (owns two mansions)

          Eddie Long–million dollar annual salary PLUS $1.4 million mansion

          Creflo A. Dollar (seriously)–income not stated, but he has a $1 million mansion in Atlanta and $2.5 million apartment in NYC–and a Rolls Royce.

          Charles Blake–Another million a year.

          Benny Hinn–Admitted to getting a million a year in the 90s, no word lately. . .

          John Hagee–another million/year

          Kenneth Copeland–Gets a million a year, plus $17.5 million jet and $6 million home.

          Joyce Meyer–She takes in $8 million a MONTH, no word of how much she keeps, personally. . .

          Joel Osteen–No specific income stated, but has a $10.5 million home.zxx

          • Goethe; (Tweedledum)
            First off I’ll only deal with the first part of your post because the second part concerning the comparison of religious leaders income into the argument is irrelevant to what this is about. NOBODY said politicians should take a vow of poverty it’s about the hypocrisy of accepting huge speaking fees and complaining about “Income Inequality” PERIOD !!!!! Only a progressive liberal could twist it to make it sound noble that they want to get taxed more.

            And yes deny it as you may but you are coming to her defense just as you always do otherwise I wouldn’t have mentioned it. I’m sure reading Tess post over the years she is quite capable to make her own defense of her argument without your help every time.

            • Bob…it is an obvious fact, I need all the help I can get.
              It does seem to me that income equality seems to be pouring from the lips and tweets of the collective Washington crowd. During the State of the Union address, Boehner tweets: SOTU FACT:” President’s Policies Have Failed the Middle Class”. Rand Paul has commented: “We cannot be the party of fat cats, rich people and Wall Street”. Ted Cruz:“The rich and powerful, those who walk the corridors of power, are getting fat and happy under the Obama economic agenda. The top 1%, the millionaires and billionaires who the president loves to demagogue, they earn a higher share of our national income than any time since 1928.” Jeb Bush: “if you’re born poor, if your parents didn’t go to college, if you don’t know your father, if English isn’t spoken at your home, then the odds are stacked against you.” And the man who got it right, Bernie Sanders: “Today, we have more wealth and income inequality than any major country on earth”.

            • Tess;
              You hit it right on the nose. The key word in your whole post is “DEMAGOGUE” ! That’s what their tweets and rhetoric is all about because we all know just where this is going to lead. The middle and lower class is going to pay for this in the long run. Which once again leads me back to my original post on this thread concerning where the money will eventually wind up. The republican party is as bad as the Democrats in this regard especially since they learnt how to say “I feel your pain”. Unfortunately for them no one believes them however.

            • Tess:
              I’ve been thinking some more about this and feel it needs a bit of clarification.

              I do see the need of lifting the needy but I don’t think it will come from the demagogue bureaucrats nor from some populism movement. It will come from the private sector when they don’t have government weighing it down with regulations and taxes. A government that’s populist out of one side of it’s mouth and catering to interest groups by granting amnesty and killing American jobs out of the other side. A government that has been supposedly fighting a “War on Poverty” for 50 years at a cost of $22 TRILLION dollars. Law makers basing legislation not on the rule of law but on some whimsical political correct populism. There is a difference between populism and “We the people……………” A lesson which was learnt in France during their 1789 revolution.

              The article below gives a good primer about basing a government on populism.


            • Bob…The French Revolution of 1789 was caused by a problem that now exists in America. The clergy and the nobility (our top 1%)—were tax-exempt. That left the tax burden to the common citizen. Unfair in 1789. Unfair in 2015.

              This is how I feel about our current state of income inequality. It is more pronounced at this time than at any other era in my lifetime. I feel “ It is our duty now to begin to lay the plans and determine the strategy for the winning of a lasting peace and the
              establishment of an American standard of living higher than ever before known. We cannot be content, no matter how high that general standard of living may be, if some fraction of our people—whether it be one-third or one-fifth or one-tenth—is ill-fed, ill-clothed, ill-housed, and insecure.” I would like to lay claim to those noble thoughts but they were spoken by Franklin Delano Roosevelt”.

              True the war on poverty started in 1964 with the very noblest of purpose. It was based on education. Educate our children, train our adults in a skill from which they could make a decent living. President Ronald Reagan came into office in 1981 as a
              harsh critic of the welfare program. During his first term, he helped secure deep cuts in the program. Following presidents cut more. Where does a young adult go for job training of any caliber if they are destitute? Street smart just gets them in jail. Texas schools are now institutionalized with armed guards at the doors with parents locked out. I did not send my children to public schools due to their poor educational curriculum. It is much worse today. Underprivileged children remain just that today, underprivileged and under-educated.

              I read the attachment. I found it ambiguous and vague, without a solid conclusion. I have been off Jonas Goldberg’s radar since he put on the dust jacket of his book published in 2012 that he had “twice been nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.” Totally untrue. And his nasty attacks on Nate Silver have been so unfounded. I guess you can tell from my posts, I am one of those “you do or you don’t” “you will or you won’t”
              kind of person. I’m not much for walking the “middle of the fence”.

            • Tess:
              I’m not going to veer the conversation off in another direction concerning taxing the church but let me say my remarks were about the results of the French revolution not the cause.

            • You know how I am sometimes, Bob, kiss off’s just fire my mind.. The results of the 1789 French Revolution was: Declaration of the
              Rights of Man and of the Citizen (August 26, 1789) which stated that the
              individual and collective rights of the nobility, clergy, and commoners were
              equal. In 1790 Legislation abolished the Church’s authority to levy a tax on crops, cancelled special privileges for theclergy, and confiscated Church property. The French Constitution of 1791 was signed in 1790 by the king (under force) and from then on France has functionedas a constitutional monarchy. Lastly, King Louis XVI and Queen Marie Antoinette
              were arrested and separately beheaded.

              The Heritage Foundation decided the welfare program cost $ 22 trillion
              dollars, not the actual government figures, they derive this figure by measuring in constant 2012 dollars (read their small print}. Constant dollars is a very clever mathematical trick that,regardless of the lesser actual cost of the program, they measure what the cost would have been in 2012 dollars. Example: a 1964 ford mustang coupe sold for $2,320.00 off the floor. A 2012 ford mustang coupe sold for $25, 725.00 off the floor. Heritage Foundation would use the largest number as their base figure. The 2012 constant dollars usage gives a false answer but excellent political garbage.

              I agree there is a tremendous amount of waste and fraud in the present welfare program. There is an even larger, unnecessary waste sponsored
              by the United States Congress. Always off on some costly, fruitless witch hunt. A little over $ 72,500 million taxpayer’smoney was spent trying to repeal the Affordable Care Act. $14 million taxpayer dollars on Benghazi investigations. Another $14 million in taxpayer money spent accommodating Republican requests, for the IRS to turn over more than 600,000 pages of documents, none of which substantiated anything. The government shutdown took at least $24 billion out of the United States economy
              (Standard & Poor). Nothing factually proven except bad judgment. Speaker Boehner needs to repay all this wasted money, he approved, back to the taxpayers.

            • There was no “kiss off’ intended. We didn’t seem to be covering any new ground with any comments that weren’t already established.

              The American and French Revolutions were inspired by the same ideas of liberty, equality and the rights of the people but their legacies are radically different. The result of their revolution was not noble but more along the lines of the Russian revolution where brutal savagery ruled. In America the revolutionaries wanted a federal government with checks and balances to protect against the tyranny of the majority. In France they wanted a legislature that was supreme and which in the extremes would tolerate no opposition. In America rights were seen as negative things for government to be protected by the government and from the government. The French Declaration of Rights of Man is all about what the government is supposed to deliver and the responsibilities of the citizens. France’s revolution was followed by another monarchy, followed by Napoleons dictatorship and then something resembling a republic for 80 years. Todays Progressives beliefs are closer in spirit to the French “Declaration of Rights of Man”.

              The rest of your post is simply nit-picking at who comes up with the most realistic cost of the “War on Poverty” and attempting to do some conscience laundering to justify the futileness of this program through an argument of relativism. We are talking about trillions of dollars and 50 years no matter how you slice it. It’s amazing that those on the left who demand power to the people also believe that people can’t do anything right without government intervention.

            • Bob: You’d be better off if you didn’t make stupid arguments. The original cartoon of Warren dressed up as a Native American was genuinely humorous. A lot of people proudly claim “belonging” to a group with only a tiny or tangential connection.

              But to say that someone who is rich should only try to push for more power for the rich is idiotic.

  2. All these issues are secondary.

    The main problem is that America cannot afford Barrack Hussein Obama to lord it over US for another 2 years! TIME TO IMPEACH this wannabe Dictator with all his previous and MORE TO COME anti-American Executive Orders (the Immigration Amnesty must be the final straw SIGNAL that Lil’ Hussein has to be deposed NOW)!

    Tea Party, Libertarians and Constitutionalists must get together and force the Rino controlled houses to do the right thing — IMPEACH OBAMA NOW and send him back to his birthplace in Kenya (or jail him for life here for usurping the presidency under false pretense — if he refuses to go)!

    This is the only meaningful action to be discussed — the rest are just chin-fests….

    • Exactly right. We need a president to invade the wrong country costing thousands of American lives, our status around the world and a trillion dollars. Then, for the first time in our history award the defense contract without a bidding process to say Haliburton. Then by easing regulations on Wall Street unleash the Great Recession and while he’s at it he can average 1 million jobs shipped to China for each year he’s in office. Then the Republican govenors can reduce the amount and time someone can collect unemployment while their job of 20years goes to the commies. Oh wait, we already had that guy.

  3. I was surprised to hear Rubio promote a much larger earned income credit. It’s his answer to increasing the minimum wage. But isn’t that an even more direct “big government” approach? Isn’t it having big government subsidize pay instead of having employers increase pay?

    But the economy is always a big issue. I remember Nixon making his biggest mistake in the 1960 election by claiming (rightly), “you’ve never had it so good!” To voters, that sounded like saying, “you ain’t gonna do any better, chump.”

    And this year, the most unlikely champion–Willard–is talking about the evils of “income inequality,” even though, JUST one year ago, he said “income inequality is JUST envy.” Fastest flip-flop in the west (east, south, or north).

Comments are closed.