Some people believe that President Obama was na?ve and his desire to surpass the political differences was a delusion due to the inflexibility of the modern American extremism right. However, since taking office, Obama has had various policies that have transformed the lives of millions of the American people. This paper focuses on the best and worst President Obama’s policies in 2014-15.
Discussion of the Best Policy
Obama believes in an equal society and he has made every possible effort to realize this goal. The best economic policy move made by Obama in 2014-15 is his Executive Order 13658 about the Minimum Wage for Contractors. In February 2014, the President signed into law the minimum wage bill that granted the American working society a $10.10 minimum wage in the year 2016. It represented 95 cents raise a year since the President proposed a three phase increment. Consequently, the salary of the full-time minimum wage worker will increase from $15,000 to approximately $21,000 (Shilling, 2015). By the end of the year 2016, close to 17 million American workers will enjoy high wages guaranteed by the policy (Shilling, 2015). Moreover, approximately 11 million American employees whose wages are slightly higher than the rate will have their salaries rise through the effects of spillover since employers will adjust their internal salaries. The major beneficiaries of the Obama policy are the working adults.
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Initially, most American analysts believed that the minimum wage policy would have an adverse impact on the employment rate. They argued that the move would cause a reduction in the employment because employers would reduce their staff after the implementation of the policy. However, recent studies show that the decision by President Obama had a minimal or no effect on the minimum wage workers’ employment even at the moments of the labor market weakness. In fact, the increase in the minimum wage has created demand for low-wage workers, hence resulting in positivity in the job market (Ravallion, 2016).
Discussion of the Worst Policy
President Obama has also adopted policies that increased taxes and, to some extent, made it unbearable to some citizens and firms in the United States. For instance, Obamacare’s individual mandate excise tax and employer mandate tax initiated in January 2014 may be considered the worst economic move made by the President. In particular, the tax policy requires employers of all companies where the number of employees exceeds 50 to pay $2000 nondeductible additional tax for full-time employees if the company does not offer medical coverage. In the case a worker receives medical coverage, the employer’s penalty increases to $3000. Finally, the employer further pays $400 for every employee when the employer needs waiting time to register for thirty to sixty days coverage (Marcovici, 2014).
The tax policy attracted much criticism from the public, especially from the employers, as they have felt the burden of the policy. Though some analysts believe that the tax policy is justified as it takes care of the employees’ affairs, the firms face hard economic challenges due to the heavy taxation, which adversely affects their budget. While the employer mandate tax deals with companies and their owners, the individual mandate excise policy affects ordinary citizens because they have to pay income surtax whenever they fail to have health insurance (Marcovici, 2014).
President Obama has a high approval in the economic sector. His administration has seen some of the best economic policies such as the minimum wage increase for the workers. This policy is efficient and positively impacts millions of lives in the United States. However, as any President, Obama has also implemented a number of policies, which caused discontent among the society. The policies that did not have a positive impact on the American people almost dilute his sound economic policies that have transformed the U.S. economy. In particular, the tax policies adopted in January 2014 received criticisms and can be marked as his worst economic policies so far.