Home Budget, Economy Economy Continues to Recover; Republicans Continue to Talk it Down, Hope for...

Economy Continues to Recover; Republicans Continue to Talk it Down, Hope for Failure


Clearly, we have a long way to go to dig ourselves out of the economic mess we inherited from the Bush Administration, but with this morning’s employment news, there’s no doubt that the economy is recovering.

A statement by the Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, Alan B. Kreuger, is on the “flip.” The bottom line: “Today’s employment report provides further evidence that the economy is continuing to heal from the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression.” A few details: “Despite adverse shocks that have created headwinds for economic growth, the economy has added private sector jobs for 24 straight months, for a total of more than 3.9 million payroll jobs over that period.”

So, great news, right? Well, yes, absolutely; that is, if you’re a normal, sane American who wants the economy to recover, people to get jobs, stuff like that. But if you’re a Republican? Based on statements like this one (“Today’s jobs report is yet another reminder that far too many Americans are out of work, and the situation is clearly not improving.”), from RNC Chair Reince Priebus, they desperately want the economy to fail.

Why would that be? Clearly, there’s one overriding reason: Republicans know that an improving economy means a high likelihood that Barack Obama will be reelected in November (see Ezra Klein for more on that subject), and that’s something they can’t stomach.  Country before party? Americans’ jobs before the jobs of Republican politicians? When it comes to the Republican’t Party, apparently the motto is “the virtue of selfishness, regardless of the consequences.”

Statement on the Employment Situation in February

WASHINGTON, DC – Alan B. Krueger, Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, issued the following statement today on the employment situation in February. You can view the statement HERE.

The Employment Situation in February

Posted by Alan B. Krueger on March 09, 2012 at 9:37AM EST.

Today’s employment report provides further evidence that the economy is continuing to heal from the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. It is critical that we continue the economic policies that are helping us dig our way out of the deep hole that was caused by the recession that began at the end of 2007, including measures to help the sectors that were most severely harmed by the bubble economy that misdirected investment and created too few durable jobs.

After losing millions of good manufacturing jobs in the years before and during the recession, the economy has added 429,000 manufacturing jobs in the past two years. For the first time since the 1990s, the manufacturing sector is adding jobs. To support a revival in manufacturing jobs and output, the President has proposed tax incentives for manufacturers, enhanced training for the workforce, and measures to create manufacturing hubs.

Private sector payrolls increased by 233,000 jobs and overall payroll employment rose by 227,000 jobs in February. The unemployment rate was unchanged at 8.3%. The unemployment rate has fallen by 0.8 percentage point over the last 6 months.

There was an increase in the size of the labor force last month of 476,000. Importantly, the increase in the labor force last month was due in large part to a reduction in the number of workers who exited the labor force between January and February.

Despite adverse shocks that have created headwinds for economic growth, the economy has added private sector jobs for 24 straight months, for a total of more than 3.9 million payroll jobs over that period. In the last 12 months, 2.2 million private sector jobs were added on net. In the last 6 months, 1.3 million private sector jobs were added, the most of any 6 month period in nearly 6 years.

Sectors with net job increases included health care and social assistance (+61,100), temporary help services (+45,200), leisure and hospitality (+44,000), and manufacturing (+31,000). Construction lost 13,000 jobs, reflecting a loss of 15,400 specialty trade contractor jobs. Employment in the Federal government fell by 7,000 jobs.

The monthly employment and unemployment numbers can be volatile, and employment estimates can be subject to substantial revision. Therefore, as the Administration always stresses, it is important not to read too much into any one monthly report; nevertheless, the trend in job market indicators over recent months is an encouraging sign.

  • Teddy Goodson

    Bush added 1,741,000 public sector (i.e., government) jobs, while profligate big-government Obama reduced public sector jobs by 864,000 through February 2012? Am I reading that correctly? Moreover, During Bush’s eight years, his administration saw private sector jobs decline by 646,000, but Obama has added 3,074,000 jobs between July 2009 (end of recession) through February 2012, so, final net totals for both public and private sector job creation shows Bush=1,095,000 and Obama=2,533,000, which means that Obama during his short tenure has seen the creation of 1,438,000 more jobs than Bush over his long 8 years. As I read it, Obama’s job creation exceeded Bush’s by over 43 percent, or almost half again as many jobs created, despite having started in the depths of Bush’s Depression.

    Wow. Wonder how the Republicans will spin this? Obfuscate, blur and question the numbers? Ignore and plough onward with The End of America? Say it’s a temporary blip and… whatever? Or, try to distract us into a war with Iran, or Syria, or… whatever?

  • pontoon

    regarding new unemployment figures. Bolding is mine for emphasis.

    WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Robert Hurt (R-VA) today released the following statement after the Department of Labor issued the February unemployment report:

    For over three years the national unemployment rate has remained over 8%, leaving too many across Central and Southside Virginia still out of work. While it is encouraging that more Americans found jobs last month, today’s unemployment report is a clear reminder of the work that is yet to be done as we work to advance policies that will provide greater hope to those in search of a job in this stalled economy.

    “Yesterday, as the House passed the JOBS Act, we saw what can happen when Washington puts aside its differences to work in the best interest of the American people. Policies like the JOBS Act, and like the dozens of other pro-growth bills we have sent over to the Senate, are what this country needs to reinvigorate the entrepreneurial spirit and get Americans back to work. These bipartisan bills would remove the federal government as a barrier to job creation, rein in reckless spending, maximize energy production here at home, and create an environment that encourages job growth. At a time when so many are struggling due to three years of failed, big government policies, it is critical that the Senate abandon its unwillingness to act, and come to the table with the House in order to spur job creation and provide the relief that the people in Central and Southside Virginia deserve.”


  • Tim Kaine Statement on February Job Growth

    Richmond, VA – Governor Tim Kaine released the following statement regarding the Bureau of Labor Statistics announcement that the U.S. economy added 227,000 jobs last month. The addition of 233,000 private sector jobs in February marks the 24th consecutive month of private sector job creation. In those two years, the private sector has added nearly 4 million jobs. In addition, job creation numbers for January 2012 and December 2011 were revised to report 61,000 more jobs were added than previously reported.

    “February’s job growth is positive news and another step forward in our recovery, but there is still work to be done to ensure that every American seeking a job has one. This month marks two years of continuous and steady private sector job creation that is essential to our continuing recovery.

    “In order to emerge from this recession in a stronger position than before it, we must develop new industries and ensure that our workforce has the right skills for the jobs of tomorrow. As we address our difficult fiscal challenges, we must leave room for strategic investments in our economy, which is why my opponent’s all cuts approach would be disastrous for the nation and Virginia’s job growth. Instead, we must pursue a balanced approach to reducing our debt and deficit that makes significant cuts, while also investing in our workforce and the industries that will create sustained economic growth.  As a Senator, I am committed to focusing on these challenges by finding common ground and rejecting political gamesmanship that delays action, creates uncertainty for our businesses, and harms our overall recovery.”

  • Bumble Bee

    Those who voted for Robert Hurt are quite simply racists.  There is a very strong vein of ignorance, intolerance and racism that runs through southside.  Nothing else really explains voting for this do nothing empty suit.