Kennedy’s Stance on the Economy: Restoring the Path to the American Dream

Kennedy’s Stance on the Economy: Restoring the Path to the American Dream
American Values 2024 | May 11, 2024

By Sanna Hannele Voltti, The Kennedy Beacon

Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has a plan to pull Americans out of the economic rut that has come to define much of the 21st century.

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Neither a radical leftist looking to raise taxes to expand government welfare programs, nor a corporatist looking to cut taxes for the wealthy in order to create jobs, Kennedy aims to put citizens on the road to self-sufficiency and stability.

Numerous times on the campaign trail, he has said with earnestness and empathy, most Americans can’t put their hands on $1000, in a time of need.

On May 6, Kennedy wrote on

The story of Tiffany Cianci is a prime example of how middle class Americans are not being served by a Wall Street economy. As reported by The New York Times, Cianci, a licensed franchisee of The Little Gym, became the target of a private equity firm in the post-pandemic economic free for all. In her conversation with Kennedy on his podcast, she explained how a firm bought The Little Gym, then changed the terms of franchise contracts. They raised the licensing rates and demanded purchases of various unnecessary services to artificially inflate the value of the company before selling it for a profit. Franchisees like Cianci saw their profits decline to the point of having to close up shop and lose their investment.

Similar aggressive tactics are also being used by investment firms to acquire residential properties and squeeze out would-be new homeowners.

As reported on April 25 in The Hill by Taylor Giorno, “It is more expensive than ever to buy a home in the US.” And like salt in a wound, wealthy investors are buying up all the homes to rent them out. Giorno adds, “1 in 3 homes were purchased with cash in February, and the median down-payment jumped to $55,640, up 24.1% from the year before. But most buyers can’t afford to make an all-cash offer or offer a larger down payment….”

American homeownership is plummeting at a rate unseen since the Great Depression, while wealth inequality has surged to levels not witnessed since the Gilded Age.

In Kennedy’s view, the ability to own a small business and own a home are linked, because owning instead of renting creates access to capital. His plan is to use government-bond backed mortgages, saying: “I’m going to give everybody a rich uncle, Uncle Sam, who will guarantee mortgages for first-time-single-family home buyers at 3% interest.”

Michael Bernick in Forbes notes that Kennedy’s plan is to encourage an “ownership economy” centered on “bringing more workers into the middle class” by making it easier for them to own their own businesses as well as their own homes.

According to real estate brokerage firm Redfin, “The median U.S. home-sale price hit a record $383,725 during the four weeks ending April 21, up 5.2% from a year earlier.” Also up a whopping 13% from a year ago is today’s median monthly mortgage payment of $2,843. Since this may turn out to be the worst time in home-buying history, government intervention on behalf of Mainstreet instead of Wall Street will be a welcome change.

And in order to increase the number of homes on the market, Kennedy will incentivize local governments to reintroduce derelict land and thousands of vacant lots and buildings that have been seized for tax arrears or other reasons into the market.

Inflation top concern

According to the 47th Biannual Harvard Youth Poll, released April 18, inflation is one of the top issues among voters ages 18 to 29. They prioritize inflation above everything except abortion, with inflation outweighing concerns over other major social issues, including climate change, healthcare, gun violence, and job prospects. Young people are well aware that when the value of the dollar shrinks, so do their dreams of economic stability. Because having a job doesn’t mean affording the cost of living.

Despite the Biden administration’s upbeat employment analysis, in November 2023, food costs were 23.4% higher and housing was 19.8% higher than in February 2020. And today, American credit card debt is higher than ever at $1.13 trillion, with interest rates at their highest in 23 years, as reported by CNN.

At the heart of Kennedy’s economic vision is the conviction that hard-working people should be able to afford a good life, support their families, have vacations once in a while and save up for retirement.

To further ease their financial burden, he aims to cut energy prices, prosecute union busting corporations, and negotiate trade deals that protect American workers.

Moreover, he plans to redirect military spending toward domestic priorities like infrastructure and healthcare, combat corruption in Washington DC, and establish addiction healing centers. Kennedy will also make student debt dischargeable in bankruptcy court and reduce interest rates on student loans to zero, while cutting drug costs by half to align them with international prices.

“We’re 33 trillion dollars in debt,” Kennedy said on CNBC’s Last Call. “We got two presidential candidates who say they brought prosperity to this country but 57% of the American people could not put their hands on a thousand dollars if they had an emergency. For those people, the engine light goes on in their car and it’s the end of the world for them.”

As former Bernie Sanders pollster Ben Tulchin opined in The New York Times, Biden’s chances of being reelected are getting slim because young people and Latinos like Kennedy’s “hard-edge economic populist message — and that is not Biden’s message.”

Both Democrats and Republicans are fond of saying, “Democracy is on the ballot,” though for different reasons. For millions of Americans living paycheck to paycheck in a constant state of fear, it can be said that alongside democracy, survival is on the ballot. To them, that’s what is on the line every day. That is what people will be voting for in November.

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