October 30, 2009
By David Jackson
Get ready for another debate over the meaning of a “saved job.”
Seeking to stay ahead of the unemployment story, the White House reports today that its $787 billion stimulus bill has created or saved 650,000 jobs; it also claims that when you count all the effects of the stimulus, particularly tax cuts, the bill has actually created or saved 1 million jobs.
According to a White House statement, “tens of thousands of state and local governments, private companies, colleges and universities and community organizations across the country submitted reports on how they have put Recovery Act funds to work through September 30th. ”
The Republican National Committee sent out a memo noting there is no way to define a “saved job,” but notes that since February the economy has lost more then 2.6 million actual jobs; the unemployment rate is now 9.8% and could crack double digits when new figures come out late next week.
“It is clear the Obama Administration is trying to cover up economic reality by manufacturing job numbers out of thin air,” said an RNC memo.
Behind these numbers, a political argument. The Obama administration says it inherited a bad economy, and that without acting, things would be even worse and those same jobs wouldn’t be there; they tout the recent spike in the economic growth rate, 3.5% between July and September.
Republicans say things aren’t getting any better and that the only thing the stimulus bill has contributed to the economy is a higher federal deficit.