That said, there is a legitimate case to be made that modern Republicans don't have America's interests at heart, that they are intentionally sabotaging the economic recovery for political gain. Argues Michael Cohen:
For Democrats, perhaps the most obvious piece of evidence of GOP premeditated malice is the 2010 quote from Senate minority leader, Mitch McConnell: "The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president."
Beyond McConnell's words, though, there is circumstantial evidence to make the case. Republicans have opposed a lion's share of stimulus measures that they once supported, such as a payroll tax break, which they grudgingly embraced earlier this year. Even unemployment insurance, a relatively uncontroversial tool for helping those in an economic downturn, has been consistently held up by Republicans or used as a bargaining chip for more tax cuts. Ten years ago, prominent conservatives were loudly making the case for fiscal stimulus to get the economy going; today, they treat such ideas like they're the plague.
Traditionally, during economic recessions, Republicans have been supportive of loose monetary policy. Not this time. Instead, Republicans have upbraided Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke for even considering policies that focus on growing the economy and creating jobs.
And then, there is the fact that since the original stimulus bill passed in February of 2009, Republicans have made practically no effort to draft comprehensive job creation legislation. Instead, they continue to pursue austerity policies, which reams of historical data suggest harms economic recovery and does little to create jobs. In fact, since taking control of the House of Representatives in 2011, Republicans have proposed hardly a single major jobs bill that didn't revolve, in some way, around their one-stop solution for all the nation's economic problems: more tax cuts.
Moreover, journalist Roger Draper's recent book reported a prominent group of 15 senior Republican figures, including Eric Cantor, Jeb Hensarling, Pete Hoekstra, Dan Lungren, Kevin McCarthy, Paul Ryan, Pete Sessions, Tom Coburn, Bob Corker, Jim DeMint, John Ensign, Jon Kyl, Newt Gingrich and Republican pollster Frank Luntz, planned on the day of Obama's inauguration to, in the words of McCarthy, "challenge them on every single bill and challenge them on every single campaign."