Posted in The Foundry at The Heritage Foundation
On June 17, Vice President Joe Biden crashed the daily White House press briefing to kick off the Obama administration's "Recovery Summer," a six-week-long campaign to promote the belief that "the Recovery Act is working." VP Biden claimed: "We knew that the hole dug by the recession that was created by the policies of the last administration resulted in a loss, a real loss of somewhere between $2 trillion and $3 trillion in the economy. We never thought that $787 billion was going to fill those holes -- that hole."
There are so many things wrong with this statement, but we'll identify just three: 1) according to the Congressional Budget Office, the cost of Obama's stimulus has soared passed $787 billion and now stands at $862 billion; 2) data show that as bad as Biden makes the current recession out to be, more jobs were lost in the first seven quarters of the 2001 recession than were lost in the first seven quarters of this recession; 3) Biden's personal economic adviser, Jared Bernstein, co-authored a January 9, 2009, report promising the American people that the Obama stimulus would never allow unemployment to rise above 8% and guaranteeing that the U.S. economy would support 138.6 million jobs by December 2010.
So by the White House's own standard, what verdict does the actual real world data give the Obama stimulus? The Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor and Statistics released its monthly jobs report today showing the economy lost 125,000 jobs in June as 225,000 temporary Census jobs ended. Just 83,000 private sector jobs were created in June. All told the U.S. economy has now lost 2.3 million jobs since President Barack Obama signed his stimulus bill and his administration is now 7.4 million jobs short of what he promised the American economy would support by 2010. There is only one word that can adequately describe the gulf between the President's economic promises and his economic performance: failure.