Al Gore believes that there is no higher priority for America
than strong and steady economic growth, and rising living standards for
American families. Together with President Clinton, he has been a key
architect of the economic strategy that has now brought the longest peacetime
economic expansion in American history. He has been a leader in preparing
America for the new and renewed economy of the 21st Century -- with its
greater demand for knowledge and high skills, rapidly advancing new
technology, and vibrant global markets. And he has been the chief defender of
America's successful economic strategy in recent political and budget battles -- warning against the dangers of taking growth and prosperity for granted, or of
returning to either the tax-and-spend or cut-and-run policies that held back
America's economy in the 80's and early 90's.
"Above all, we must keep America's prosperity going in the 21st Century, to create good jobs for all our people."
- Al Gore
The Clinton-Gore Economic Strategy:
Al Gore's pro-growth strategy for the 21st Century:
- Fiscal discipline. Al Gore has fought for deficit reduction and less wasteful federal spending -- to bring down interest rates and spur new investment by businesses and families; to trim runaway bureaucracy and make government smaller and smarter; and just as important, to free America
from the exploding debt burden that was compromising future economic
growth and the future of progressive government itself.
As a Congressman and Senator, Gore supported spending cuts and strong measures to reduce the deficit. And today's balanced budget would not have been possible without Al
Gore's aggressive effort to cut government waste and inefficiency through the Reinventing Government
initiative, eliminating scores of needless government programs, outdated regulations,
and billions of dollars in wasteful spending.
- Targeted investments in people. By opening the doors to college wider than ever before; by expanding job training and re-training; by aggressively expanding America's commitment to science, technology, research and development, Al Gore has worked to ensure that America's economy becomes more innovative, more productive, and more inclusive -- giving
everyone a chance to share in prosperity.
In Congress, he fought for tax relief for working families -- including a tax cut for families with children, and an $800 million middle class tax cut that would have removed two million families from the tax rolls and lifted 600,000 families out of poverty.
- Open markets. A champion of free and fair trade for his entire career, Gore has been a national leader in opening markets around the world, and tapping into the 96% of the world's consumers who live outside our borders, while at the same time protecting labor and environmental rights. With one third of America's growth due to exports in the past six years, and export-related jobs paying 12-18% more than other jobs, Gore has fought for free and fair trade to improve the lives and livelihoods of American families.
As Al Gore said in May of 1998 at the Detroit Economic Club,
"America's new economic strategy is working. But already, there are voices
urging us to take growth for granted. I believe we have to use good times to
tackle even tougher challenges; to lead the world economy; to provide world-class education and training for a world-class workforce; to make permanent
the disciplined, pro-growth policies that have enabled America to create good
jobs and raise incomes."
His five-point plan for economic growth in the 21st Century:
- Maintain fiscal discipline -- to keep interest rates low and investment
rates high. Barring an economic reversal, a national emergency, or a foreign
crisis, Gore has called for a balanced budget -- or better --
not just this year, but every year.
- Use good economic times to tackle tough, long-term economic problems
-- and that means meeting our promise to an aging society by saving Social Security first and protecting Medicare while we have the means and the will to do it. Al Gore has urged Congress to refrain from risky tax schemes, and instead pass a responsible Social Security and Medicare reform plan -- to ensure the dignity of seniors in retirement, while also raising the national savings rate.
- Continue cutting regulations and reforming and reinventing government --
so that it costs less, works better, and keeps pace with today's fast-moving
economy. Already, the Reinventing Government initiative headed by Al Gore has saved $137 billion, eliminated 16,000 pages of regulations,
eliminated 640,000 pages of needless internal rules, and reduced the federal
workforce by more than 350,000, to its smallest size since John Kennedy was
- Invest more in education for the Information Age, as well as investing aggressively in research and development and ensuring the protection of our environment. America must continue to stay ahead of a changing economy, and ensure that everyone has a chance to succeed in the highly-skilled workplaces of the 21st Century.
- America must maintain its role as the world's leader. Al Gore has repeatedly called for the passage of Fast Track trading authority, to allow the President to open more markets for American products while protecting labor and environmental rights. He has worked with the President to ensure a vigorous American role in addressing the world financial crisis. He has fought for a trading system that includes strong safeguards for workers, for health and safety, for children, and for a clean environment. And he has called on other nations -- such as Japan and the nations of Europe -- to jump-start their own economies, and live up to their shared responsibilities for global growth.
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