Tomorrow’s Middle Class Prosperity Depends on What We Do Today.

Message from New Democrat Coalition Chairman Ron Kind:

There is no question that today’s economy isn’t the one I grew up in. And, it won’t be the one my grandchildren grow up in either. In the past two decades, the Internet and a rapid boom in technology have forever changed the shape of our economy. Americans have seen the immense benefits these technological advances have had in their everyday lives. However, more and more Americans are concerned about what these changes may mean for their place in the economy.

In response, the New Democrat Coalition developed a plan to help hardworking Americans win in the changing global economy. In March 2015, we released the American Prosperity Agenda, which outlines how we can grow our economy, preserve the American Dream, and make government work better for the people. These principles represent ideas anyone — Democrat, Republican, or Independent — can support. The following is our one-year report on that Prosperity Agenda, outlining our list of policies to keep America the most competitive, creative, and innovative country in the world.

This report presents 200 different bills and initiatives that our Members have fought for, including ideas from every single Member of the New Dems. Many of these bills have become law or advanced through the legislative process; however, many have not. For the United States to grow its economy and remain competitive, we need to put aside partisanship and work toward compromise to advance bills like those in this report. From providing additional assistance to small businesses seeking to export to new markets, to investing in competitions to spur innovative scientific research, to making public schools more equitable, the bills in the report run the gamut of important policy priorities that demand action. Our report acts as a menu of commonsense policy options that will help solve some of the most pressing problems facing the United States.

In many cases, the report highlights bills and projects that have become law — for instance, New Dem efforts to support the passage and implementation of The Jump Start Our Business Start-Ups (JOBS) Act to bolster new entrepreneurs trying to raise capital. It also includes innovative ideas to help government work more effectively, such as Yelp for Government, which allows federal agencies to set up Yelp pages to be more responsive to public feedback. Additionally, the report offers solutions for the future, such as The Voting Rights Advancement Act, which would help protect voting rights for everyone.

We know that we need to legislate for the economy of the future, not the economy of fifty years ago. This means identifying ways to make government more efficient; writing the rules of trade to elevate standards and level the playing field for our workers, businesses, and farmers; and investing in innovative policies that will help us maintain our status as a global leader in areas like developing groundbreaking technology, moving toward sustainable energy, and increasing educational attainment. With the economy continuing to change, we need to increase investment in education and job training programs so everyone has the opportunity to succeed. Our report presents multiple options for addressing precisely these problems.

It won’t happen overnight, but we need to take action today to stay competitive tomorrow. The policies laid out by the New Democrat Coalition will help shape and control the direction of globalization rather than allow globalization to shape us. Our economy isn’t going to stop changing, and neither should our efforts to find the most innovative, effective solutions for adapting to those changes.

For a PDF of the report, see here on our website.