Posted by: Michael Mandel on August 16
Back in early 2006, I wrote
When the housing boom is over, the politics will begin…Democratic politicians fail to understand that their economic attacks on the Bush Administration can’t really take hold until the housing market goes south. Rising home prices are an engine of prosperity for the typical American family. Until that engine goes in reverse — which may be starting to happen — doom-and-gloom politics won’t really resonate….
Democrats have to be ready with their own package of reforms to cushion the housing downturn, even if the measures add to the budget deficit. There’s no excuse for not having made plans in advance.
Well, that time has come. It will be much easier for the Democratic nominee—whomever he/she is—to make the case that the economy is heading in the wrong direction if the housing market is in crisis.
That point is now being made by others. A Boston Globe article
The more the crisis ripples through the economy, the more it will help Democrats make the case that Republican economic policies have spurned middle- and lower-income families, some campaign watchers said.
“It’s an enormous opportunity for the Democrats to criticize the failures of the Bush administration, the fallout we are seeing from laissez-faire economic policies,” Alan I. Abramowitz, a political scientist at Emory University, said yesterday.
And if the unemployment rate starts to rise? Then the Republicans might as well kiss the White House good-bye.
Michael Mandel, BW's award-winning chief economist, provides his unique perspective on the hot economic issues of the day. From globalization to the future of work to the ups and downs of the financial markets, Mandel-named 2006 economic journalist of the year by the World Leadership Forum-offers cutting edge analysis and commentary.