08/24/2012 05:12 pm ET Updated Oct 24, 2012

It's Still the Economy, Stupid, and You Can't Build That Without Us

Forget the ABCs of the GOP Campaign coverage -- Akin, Birthers and Conservatives -- the fundamentals of election 2012 remain jobs, jobs and jobs. It's still the economy, stupid, and you can't build that without us. 

No president can create jobs without us -- without government -- but Mitt Romney will spend a week in Tampa pretending otherwise.

As Republicans gather in Tampa in the potential path of Hurricane Isaac, they're going to owe their safety to the very first responders whose jobs they've tried to cut. Just this summer, Mitt Romney attacked Barack Obama, saying of the president "he's trying to hire more firefighters, more police officers, more teachers -- did he not get the message from Wisconsin? it's time to cut back on government and help the American people." Putting aside the illogic of assuming that public service workers don't help the American people, we ask a deeper question: how in the world will Romney create jobs by firing people? OK, not in government.

Let's move to healthcare. By repealing ObamaCare, Romney would raise premiums, bring back medical discrimination, and make Medicare bankrupt by 2016. Not a lot of jobs there.

How about small business job creators? They need access to credit and capital -- and with the banks not lending we are back to government again, starting with SBA and Commerce Department loans. Romney does not give us specifics on his tax plan so we don't know what hiring incentives companies may get. He says he will give corporate tax cuts to the high end as George W. Bush did -- but those high end tax cuts didn't create jobs. Again, more deficits due to tax breaks without the jobs to show for them.

Jobs for veterans? Unlike President Obama's American Jobs Act, Romney's 59-page jobs plan did not even mention veterans -- some of our most highly trained workers. Paul Ryan is now decrying the sequester of military spending for which he once voted, but even defense spending is required to create jobs in the military sector -- apparently the only place where Romney is willing to spend government money.

Jobs in the energy sector? The energy plan denies global warming -- even as a hurricane heads toward the nominee -- and the only jobs we see are in nuclear energy -- which cannot happen without government insurance -- natural gas and drilling. Yes, Mitt Romney will go to the Florida coast and present a jobs plan for drilling. Good luck with that. Which leaves us with the natural gas plan which will also require government incentives, or tax breaks -- in other words, government spending. Some jobs yes, but enough to lift us out of recession? Not even close. 

Jobs in housing, infrastructure and manufacturiong? New construction is up -- but with Romney's theory to "let the market bottom out," many mortgages are underwater deeper than homes in the wake of Hurricane Isaac. Again, federal intervention would be required to expand construction in housing and infrastructure. The Democrats' Make it in America bill calls for exactly that -- but since Romney allows no government spending we're hard-pressed to get jobs without investments. And lest we forget "let Detroit go bankrupt" was advice President Obama didn't take -- and saved the auto industry instead.

Industry by industry, job creation out of recession does not happen on its own. It takes government investments via direct loans grants or tax cuts. There is no way to "cut back on government" and create jobs at the same time. And that's why instead of a tangible jobs plan we can believe in we'll get a week of Democrat-bashing and dog-whistling in Tampa, in a stadium they couldn't build without us. Until the government employees usher them safety home.