April 2nd, 2010
11:16 AM ET

Republicans rip new jobs figures

The U.S. economy may have picked up steam in terms of job growth in March, but Republican critics of the administration's recovery plan remain unimpressed.

The economy added 162,000 jobs last month, compared to a 14,000 job loss in February, according to the Labor Department.  That makes March only the third month with job gains since the recession began three years ago.  The national unemployment rate, however, held steady at 9.7 percent.

Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele released a statement Friday dismissing much of March's job growth as a product of the U.S. Census Bureau's addition of 48,000 jobs for its once-in-a-decade headcount of the U.S. population.

"It is unacceptable for President Obama to declare economic success when unemployment remains at 9.7 percent and a large portion of the job growth came from temporary boost in government employment," he said.

"As Democrats grow Big Government, Americans grow weary of the strain on family budgets, job security and peace of mind.  As America's employers announce the frightening and immediate impact of the Democrat government-run healthcare experiment on their balance sheets, American workers wonder why the only place exempt from increasingly painful belt-tightening seems to be Washington, D.C."

Steele predicted that "in November, the American voters will deliver a few more pink slips - to congressional Democrats."

Virginia Rep. Eric Cantor, the number two Republican in the House of Representatives, conceded that "any report showing that the economy added jobs is clearly a better alternative to one showing that it lost more jobs." But, he said, Americans "must set our sights higher, our goals larger, and our actions bolder.  (We) deserve far more than the up and down, roller coaster like unemployment reports of the past few months."

Georgia GOP Rep. Tom Price, a leading House conservative, argued that while the job growth was "welcome news," the country is "yet to see the robust private sector job creation the Obama administration promised would come from its $862 billion failed stimulus."

Employers, Price claimed, "particularly small businesses, are staring at a litany of tax increases, new government mandates, and onerous regulations, all of which threatens to derail their plans for the future."

White House Council of Economic Advisers Christina Romer agreed in a written statement that the U.S. labor market "remains severely distressed."  But she claimed that the March jobs figures show "continued signs of gradual labor market healing."

"Even after adjusting for the 48,000 temporary Census workers hired and a rebound effect from the February snowstorms, this number suggests an increase in underlying payroll employment," she said.

"While this is the most positive jobs report we have had in three years, there will likely be bumps in the road ahead. ... It is important not to read too much into any one monthly report, positive or negative.  It is essential that we continue our efforts to move in the right direction and generate steady, strong job gains."

The U.S. economy has suffered a net loss of 8.2 million jobs since the start of 2008, a month after the official start of the recession.

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Congress • Economy • Jobs • Politics • Republican Party • U.S.
soundoff (22 Responses)
  1. Lisa

    Can the Repubs see nothing good!!! We need a little possative additude from both sides, the repubs could care less about the people they are only worried about November and taking back the house and senate. I think if they keep on going down this same "NO" path they have been on since Obama took office it will hurt them in the end. Like McCain said they arent going to help the pres. on another thing the rest of the year since they lost healthcare, how is that any good for any american and really what have the Repubs done anyway since Obama took office but say "NO" even the jobs bill they only had 5 repubs. vote for it (I think 5)??? Sooner then later the people will get tired of the republs. doing nothing. They are a bunch of babies, if they loose something they are going take their blocks and go home and not play anymore. GO HOME THEN REPUBS.

    April 2, 2010 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Maurizio

    Bare in mind that there is a 45 days time span in which these news can be corrected with the actual numbers; just check December of 2009 for instance and then its review a month a half later......do a back check and you will see that the numbers are manipulated so the markets respond accordingly on that day and short there after.... It is irresponsible saying that the democrats this and the GOP that, it has nothing to do with it- Look at the ADP Report last Wednesday....they were expecting a positive number on jobs created in the private sector and instead it registered a loss of around 26,000...also does it make any sense at all that 100K plus jobs were created but unemployment rate kept a steady 9%+ in red??? Open your eyes people; and it is not Obama's fault or anyone else's, is a cycle of the economy that repeats itself every 80 years or so. The unemployment report, which comes out on the first Friday of every month, does not count people that have been fired and that had less than 6 months on their job, also the numbers respond to the amount of unemployment filings on the month prior to the report, but it does not report all those people whose unemployment benefits have expired and they are still out of work, so please read, document yourselves before giving an opinion in something so complicated as it is the politics behind the unemployment news.....oh, one more thing, wait for the BIG MARKET CRASH SOON!!!! I'm giving you the heads up about it.....but what would I know I'm just a guest in this wonderful country!

    April 2, 2010 at 9:22 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Henry Rutgers

    The Republican leader (their real one, not Michael Steele) announced long ago that he wanted America to "Fail".
    He said that his biggest fear would be for their to be success since then voters would not return his republican party to power.

    So Republicans WANT and NEED failure, and have been doing everything possible to prolong the catastrophic mess they created, and then blaming Obama for not cleaning up their pile "fast enough".

    Republican leaders count on Americans being stupid. Enough watch Fox News or listen to Rush Limpbaugh to make them believe that they are right.

    April 3, 2010 at 12:39 am | Report abuse |
  4. Keith

    Its great that the economy dded 162,000 jobs in March, however, I am skeptical because of the way the numbers are compiled. They could be higher or lower when they are finalized in 3 or 4 months.

    However, as long as we are discussing the numbers at hand, they are not representative of the actual employment scene.

    162,000 jobs added
    48,000 from census

    An additional 40,000 were added in 'temporary only' jobs leaving a grand total of permanent jobs at 74,000, still that is a positive from losing jobs. But we must also look at the rest of the employment picture to fully understand what has happened. In March, there was a grand total of 295,000 full time employees who were downgraded to part time due to economic reasons (i.e. not because they wanted to go part time). So the outlook might be positive in that 74,000 permanent jobs were added, but 295,000 people just lost at least half of their income. Could it be that businesses moved more folks to part time status and hired additional part time labor to keep the workforce levels consistent and eliminate the burden of providing benefits for full time employees?

    It isn't as rosy when you see the whole picture .. we still ahve a long way to go before a recovery can be declared.

    April 4, 2010 at 3:21 pm | Report abuse |
  5. bob schoos

    As usual, Republicans, through the voice of M. Steele, are making total fools of themselves!

    April 5, 2010 at 4:01 am | Report abuse |
  6. Mark from San Diego

    This Administration could solve world hunger and propel our country back into a bull market economy - and the Republicans droids would still have an issue - they are so out-of-touch it isn't even funny. As a small business owner, I would have loved to have a public health plan which would allow me to compete on a par basis with Europe and Japan - what the heck are these guys thinking? [I actually know, there're thinking about their "real" constituents.]

    April 6, 2010 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Paul

    Obviously everyone knows that the Republicans want nothing more than for our economy to continue to suffer so that they can get their people elected. Their opinion on the economy should be subjected to just as much scrutiny as the White House's opinion of it.

    April 7, 2010 at 5:41 pm | Report abuse |
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