Do GOP candidates have it right on boosting the economy?


GOP Presidential Candidates Pushing Tax Cuts, Tax Reform to Get Economy Booming Again

Charles Payne: How about letting people just keep more money, more of what they make? This way they'll go out and spend it, this way it will start to circulate into the economy. You could argue, hey, what happened because there's the gas savings? That hasn't materialized, but that's something different. I think most people consider that temporary. If they know there is something solid, that their check is going to be larger, and to a certain degree it is backward prosperity. It would be really good if we had an economy where the whole thing was rising and we start making more money, but the idea is how do we spark it? The Federal Reserve has tried, four trillion of phony money hasn't done it, but let people spend their own money. Let businesses spend their own money.

Ben Stein: With all due respect, Albert Einstein, if injected with the blood of Milton Friedman, could not prove that lower taxes mean higher government revenue or a bigger, better economy. No one has ever been able to make that connection. Yes, we had considerable prosperity but there were many reasons for that. We were recovering from a recession. We got a serious moderation of inflation. It could have been a reason, but there have been very many tax cuts after that and they have not led to booming the economy.

Dagen McDowell: Are you going to say tax increases then aren't bad for the economy? Would anybody in their right mind say, hey, the economy is barely growing right now, we're going to raise taxes on the American people. If you pass through a tax hike right now, I would argue that it would damage the economy significantly. Let's try on the backs of the hard-working American people.

Charlie Gasparino: Why do we have to sit here and prove stuff that we can't empirically prove or we could get a bunch of economists in the room and they could give us 15 different answers? Why can't we just say, it's my money, I don't want the federal government to take my money?

Julie Roginsky: I am looking at this debate stage the other night, and I am thinking about all these people putting out their tax plans and I'm thinking, something doesn't smell right here. You've got Ted Cruz talking about a 10 percent flat tax. He forgot to mention the vast tax on top of that that he would put on services. You talk about Marco Rubio talking about his equitable tax plan, forgot to say that the very rich among us would get a larger tax break than the middle class. So I want to know how these guys would justify giving tax breaks to their buddies, at the same time that they're trying to balance the budget?

Administration Calls for Limiting Time Spent on Standardized School Tests

Charlie Gasparino: I know New York City school teachers who are very good. What they complain about is that the unions in large part protect the really bad teachers, to protect their own power. That's what all of this is about. I don't know a single New York City school teacher who is smart -- I know a few who are smart, that's afraid of this test. This test will weed out the morons. There are plenty of morons to be weeded out.

Dagen McDowell: This is where the unions are being smart because they know parents hate testing. More and more parents detest it. The unions are on the ropes. You have had tenure taking a hit, collective bargaining rights lost in some states. Their performance has been increasingly linked to students' scores. So they're smart. They know exactly how to get people to back off and it's going after testing.

Charles Payne: I think you can argue it's overdone. But parents need to look into the tests themselves. You know, years ago, I was helping my son with his homework and he forgot to bring home the study sheet, so I googled it. I discovered that the book that he was using had two sets of tests, the hard test and the easy test. His school was giving him the easy test and it really mad me angry. I wanted him to have the hard test. I don't want my kid to get an artificial A and then not be able to do anything when he became an adult. Unfortunately, that's where we are. I think ultimately that it's the students that are getting hurt by all of this, at the teachers' expense.

Julie Roginsky: I actually think this administration stood up to the N.E.A. more than probably any other Democratic administration before. Dagen's right, the N.E.A., the teachers unions have been weakened. There's something to be said that we're teaching more to the test. The kids are taking more tests than the rest of us. I like the concept of having a metric that you're measured against empirical data, that you're measured up against other kids. It's a great idea. Teachers too, I'm very merit-based. I don't think you need rubber rooms for the teachers who stink. Get rid of them. I don't like the fact that more and more we're teaching to too many tests. What's lost in the translation is that the kids are only learning how to take these tests. They're not using their imagination, they're not being taught anything else.

Ben Stein: I think there are several things going on. One, the unions are throwing their weight around. Two, there is an astounding, horrifying, terrifying racial gap in achievement on the nation's standardized testing and I think the Obama administration wants to try to cover that up. Three, there is a complete misunderstanding about the value of memorization and teaching to the test. Memorization and teaching to the tests have been the classic way of people being educated for centuries and it makes a lot of sense now.

Democratic Lawmakers Bash Energy Companies Over Soaring Gas Prices

Ben Stein: The politicians, the left wingers, and the academics of this country have never understood the oil companies. The oil companies are not a conspiracy. They are America. They are owned by American stockholders. Their profits go to pay for American's college educations and retirements. The market is what determines the price of oil. Incredibly idiotic jejune leftist's idea of the oil companies has never made sense.

Julie Roginsky: I find it so odd that Bob Menendez doesn't want to hold hearings about how we're lowering prices, how prices are at record lows for consumers who are actually keeping more of their money. Which I know Charlie and Charles would be very happy to hear about. So we want to hold hearings on what? That our gas prices are too low?

Charlie Gasparino: I can understand these craven, disgusting, mealy-mouthed politicians like Chuck Schumer and Menendez and all these guys using this as a way to create class warfare but when reasonably intelligent people like Julie sit there and rationalize this stupid argument because let's face it, when oil companies make money we hire more people. It's stupid.

Charles Payne: It's not consistent and it's so dumb. Oil companies kept America from going into a great depression over the last few years. The fracking miracle saved America.

Dagen McDowell: We should have been cheering innovation. By the way, Hillary Rodham Clinton does want an investigation into Exxon Mobile and research it did on climate change including Bernie Sanders so they can't go after him for low gasoline prices. They're going to go after him for something else.

'November to Remember' stocks

Charles Payne: Target (TGT)

Ben Stein: SPDR (SPY)