September 4, 2009

Unemployment Hits 9.7%; 3.1 Million Jobs Lost Since Stimulus Bill

Politico reports today, “August may be over, but it’s causing one last headache for the Obama administration as the jobless rate jumped up to 9.7%, the highest point yet this recession and higher than what economists expected from the monthly report. . . . The unemployment rate is now the highest since June 1983, and most economists believe it will eventually top 10%.”

Back in July, when it was reported that the June unemployment rate was 9.5%, Vice President Joe Biden told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, “The second hundred days [of the recovery package] you’re going to see a lot more jobs created.” But since then, the economy has lost 492,000 jobs.

Yesterday, Biden spoke at the Brookings Institution, touting the $787 billion stimulus bill. Biden said, “The Recovery Act has created or saved between 500,000 and 750,000 jobs. Matter of fact: some notable economists suggest the number is as high as a million.” Unfortunately, the reality is that 3.1 million jobs have been lost since February. In a fact check piece, the AP writes Biden’s “glowing assessment overlooks many of the program’s problems, including delays in releasing money, questionable spending priorities and project picks that are under investigation.”

The reality of the economic situation hasn’t reflected well on the Obama administration’s predictions about the stimulus bill. But even worse is  their predictions from February when they were trying to sell the stimulus bill to Congress. At the time, President Obama, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), and a whole host of White House advisors claimed the bill would create 3 to 4 million jobs.  Yet, the facts have proven to be far different; since then, 3.1 million jobs have been lost.
ARRA News Service

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