Saturday, October 9, 2010

What did Obama say would happen?

I thought I'd step into the way-back machine to be clear about what President Obama and his advisers were saying we could expect from his then-proposed economic policies. This isn't a fact checking effort. I just want to have something to refer back to when I read articles on job reports. I have highlighted some of the measurable claims that are typically mentioned in job reports.

From the Washington Post, January 11, 2009:
Facing increased skepticism from both parties about the details of his economic stimulus proposal, President-elect Barack Obama and his team yesterday laid out new claims regarding the $775 billion package, saying that 90 percent of the jobs produced would be in the private sector, including hundreds of thousands in construction and manufacturing.

Obama used his weekly radio address to continue his pre-inaugural campaign to build momentum for passage of the stimulus package, saying: "The jobs we create will be in businesses large and small across a wide range of industries. And they'll be the kind of jobs that don't just put people to work in the short term, but position our economy to lead the world in the long term."

To buttress Obama's points, two of his top economic advisers released yesterday an analysis of the president-elect's plan. The report carried the grim prediction that, while millions of jobs would be created or saved through the stimulus package, the unemployment rate would be little improved by the end of 2010 from the 7.2 percent at the end of last month -- the nation's highest rate since 1993. The advisers also warned that, without passage of the stimulus plan, unemployment could reach 9 percent.

. . .

Republicans have been wary of the potential for government payrolls to balloon, but the Obama aides wrote that less than 10 percent of the jobs created under the stimulus plan would be government positions. They also predicted that many of the new jobs would be "green jobs," involved in such tasks as retrofitting buildings -- reflecting a desire from Democratic activists and lawmakers to use some of the stimulus money for innovative projects, rather than for improving current infrastructure such as roads.

Obama aides said the stimulus plan would create millions of jobs while preventing layoffs of already-employed workers, particularly in state government. The advisers estimated about 137.6 million Americans would be employed at the end of 2010 if the stimulus were implemented, 2 million more than the current employment of 135.5 million. Without the stimulus, the aides predicted, about 133.9 million people would be employed, leading them to conclude that the plan could create or save nearly 4 million jobs.

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