Research

The Fact Sheets Revisited

The Obama Administration Has A New Set Of Promises For Their Second Stimulus But Many Of The Promises From The First Stimulus Remain Unfulfilled

OBAMA MAY WANT TO FORGET THE PROMISES FROM THE FIRST STIMULUS BUT EVEN HE CAN’T SPIN THE “FACT SHEETS” FROM THAT FAILED EFFORT

More Ambitious Jobs Predictions

FACT SHEET: Obama’s Economic Advisors Crafted A Stimulus Bill They Predicted Would Keep Unemployment Below Eight Percent. (Christina Romer and Jared Bernstein, “The Job Impact Of The American Recovery And Reinvestment Plan,” 1/9/09)

  • The White House And Obama Predicted The Stimulus Would Create Or Save 3.5 Million Jobs. “The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is a nationwide effort to create jobs, jumpstart growth and transform our economy to compete in the 21st century. The compromise package of  $789 billion will create or save 3.5 million jobs over the next two years.” (“American Recovery And Reinvestment Act: State-By-State Jobs Impact,” The White House, 2/13/09)

RESULT: Since Obama’s First $825 Billion Stimulus Passed, The Nation Has Lost 1.7 Million Jobs And The Unemployment Rate Has Remained Over 8 Percent For A Post-WWII Record 31 Straight Months. (Bureau Of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov, Accessed 9/19/11)

NOW: President Obama Predicts His Second Stimulus Will Create 1.9 Million Jobs And Lower Unemployment A Full Percentage Point. “President Obama has attached a big number to his jobs bill: 1.9 million. At a private fundraiser last night, Obama said his proposal would create 1.9 millions jobs, while reducing the 9.1% unemployment rate by a percentage point; he also said it would add two percentage points to the gross domestic product.” (David Jackson, “Obama: My Bill Will Create 1.9 Million Jobs,” USA Today, 9/16/11)

Another Attempt At Recovery-Inducing Infrastructure Jobs

FACT SHEET: The Stimulus Focus On Infrastructure Projects Was Supposed “To Save Or Create Nearly 400,000 Jobs For American Workers Today.” “The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act makes a long-overdue, historic investment in our national infrastructure – including our roads, bridges, public transit, housing and broadband – to save or create nearly 400,000 jobs for American workers today and power enhanced economic growth for the decades to come.” (“American Recovery And Reinvestment Act: A $150 Billion Investment In Our Nation’s Infrastructure,” The White House, 2/17/09)

RESULTS: Since President Obama’s First $825 Billion Stimulus Pass, The Nation Has Lost 931,000 Construction Jobs Including 67,400 Jobs In Heavy And Civil Engineering Construction. (Bureau Of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov, Accessed 9/19/11)

  • Former Biden Chief Of Staff Ron Klain: The Stimulus’ Infrastructure Spending Was “Hardly A Game Changer.” “Yes, infrastructure projects create jobs. But even by the administration’s own estimate, the number of jobs created or saved by $25 billion in Recovery Act spending on roads was a mere 150,000 over a two-year period. That isn’t a trivial number, but it’s hardly a game changer for an economy that needs to create 5 million jobs each year just to keep the unemployment rate constant.” (Ron Klain, Op-Ed, “Forget About Hoover Dam And Other Job-Growth Lessons,” Bloomberg, 6/14/11)

NOW: The White House Predicts “Immediate Investment In Infrastructure” Will “Jumpstart Critical Infrastructure Projects And Create Hundreds Of Thousands Of Jobs.” “Immediate Investments in Infrastructure ($50 billion):  In order to jumpstart critical infrastructure projects and create hundreds of thousands of jobs, the President’s plan includes $50 billion in immediate investments for highway, highway safety, transit, passenger rail, and aviation activities – with one fifth of the funding advancing a transformation of how we finance transportation infrastructure and what we finance.” (Office Of The Press Secretary, “The American Jobs Act: Fact Sheet And Overview,” WhiteHouse.gov, 9/8/11)

High-Speed Rail To The Future (Or Nowhere)

FACT SHEET: “The American Recovery And Reinvestment Act Makes An Unprecedented Investment In Public Transit And Innovative High-Speed Rail Initiatives…” “The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act makes an unprecedented investment in public transit and innovative high-speed rail initiatives to bring new, efficient transportation alternatives to millions of Americans across the country and finally start breaking the grip of foreign oil on our nation’s economy.” (“American Recovery And Reinvestment Act: A $150 Billion Investment In Our Nation’s Infrastructure,” The White House, 2/17/09)

  • The White House Predicted That The $8 Billion Investment In High Speed Rail Would “Create Or Save Tens Of Thousands Of Jobs Over Time.” “This historic $8 billion investment is expected to create or save tens of thousands of jobs over time in areas like track-laying, manufacturing, planning and engineering, and rail maintenance and operations.” (“High-Speed Rail, Jobs, And The Recovery Act,” WhiteHouse.gov, Accessed 9/19/11)

RESULT: California Will Build Its First Segment Of Stimulus Funded High Speed Rail Between Two Sparsely Populated Rural Towns. “Instead, the recommended route doesn’t connect those population centers. One end stops in Borden, which was derided in an editorial in the Merced Sun-Star as a ‘mythical ‘town’’ that ‘Gertrude Stein wouldn’t even have acknowledged.’ The San Jose Mercury News described the other end of the route, Corcoran, as ‘perhaps best known for the state prison where Charles Manson is locked up.’” (Daisy Nguyen, “Critics Pan Proposed High-Speed Rail Segment,” The Associated Press, 12/1/10)

  • Rep. Dennis Cardoza (D-CA) Said The Proposed Route “Defies Logic And Common Sense.” “‘It defies logic and common sense to have the train start and stop in remote areas that have no hope of attaining the ridership needed to justify the cost of the project,’ Cardoza wrote in a letter Tuesday to U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.” (Daisy Nguyen, “Critics Pan Proposed High-Speed Rail Segment,” The Associated Press, 12/1/10)
  • Pressure From Federal Officials To Spend The $4.3 Billion In Funds Quickly Resulted In The Selection Of The Route. “Federal officials said last month they wanted the $4.3 billion to go toward a project that can be completed and operational by 2017. Some officials say that goal can most likely be achieved in California’s agricultural core, where costs are lower, community opposition is weaker, and fewer delays are anticipated.” (Daisy Nguyen, “Critics Pan Proposed High-Speed Rail Segment,” The Associated Press, 12/1/10)

NOW: President Obama Is Proposing Another $4 Billion For High-Speed Rail. Funding for Innovative Transportation: The plan includes $10 billion for innovative ways of financing and investing in infrastructure. This includes $4 billion to develop high-speed rail corridors …” (Office Of The Press Secretary, “The American Jobs Act: Fact Sheet And Overview,” WhiteHouse.gov, 9/8/11)

Shovel-Ready Projects Are Now “Expedited” Infrastructure Projects

FACT SHEET: The Stimulus Was Supposed To Target “Ready-To-Go Repairs” And Other Shovel Ready Projects. “The Recovery and Reinvestment Act addresses this challenge head-on by focusing on ready-to-go repairs and maintenance that will make our infrastructure systems more resilient and secure, including supporting over 2,000 water infrastructure projects and enhancing the security of 90 major ports.” (“American Recovery And Reinvestment Act: A $150 Billion Investment In Our Nation’s Infrastructure,” The White House, 2/17/09)

  • Vice President Biden: “But These Slides Show That We Had 1,750 Highway Projects That Were Under Way. It’s Called Shovel-Ready. When The Governors Finally Let The Contracts, And Did It By The Numbers, There Were 1,750 Projects Under Way.” (Vice President Joe Biden, White House Briefing, 6/17/10)

RESULT: OBAMA: “Shovel-Ready Wasn’t As Shovel-Ready As We Expected.” (President Barack Obama, Remarks Before The President’s Council On Jobs And Competitiveness, Durham, N.C., 6/13/11)

  •  “[Obama] Realized Too Late That ‘There’s No Such Thing As Shovel-Ready Projects’ When It Comes To Public Works.” (Peter Baker, “Education Of A President,” The New York Times, 10/12/10)

NOW: The White House Identifies “High Impact, Job-Creating Infrastructure Projects That Can Be Expedited Through Outstanding Review And Permitting Processes.” “Expediting High Impact Infrastructure ProjectsThe President recently issued a Presidential Memorandum in coordination with his Jobs Council directing departments and agencies to identify high impact, job-creating infrastructure projects that can be expedited through outstanding review and permitting processes within the control and jurisdiction of the federal government. … This initiative will create infrastructure related jobs and use the lessons learned to develop best practices that can be applied more broadly to  permitting and review processes going forward.” (Office Of The Press Secretary, “The American Jobs Act: Fact Sheet And Overview,” WhiteHouse.gov, 9/8/11)

Another Attempt At Bailing Out Teacher Unions

FACT SHEET: The Stimulus Would Prevent Teacher Layoffs In Every State. “Preventing teacher layoffs and education cuts in every state. A recent study by the University of Washington found that states are likely to cut nearly 15 percent of their education spending over the next three years, which could eliminate 574,000 education jobs. The ARRP will help prevent devastating cuts to education by providing $53.6 billion to states and school districts to prevent layoffs and cuts in critical education services and $25 billion in support for educating at risk students and those with special needs.” (“American Recovery And Reinvestment Act: The Largest Investment in Education in Our Nation’s History,” The White House, 2/17/09)

RESULT: Since President Obama’s First $825 Billion Stimulus Passed, Local Governments Have Lost 289,100 Education Jobs. (Bureau Of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov, Accessed 9/19/11)

NOW: The American Jobs Act Promises To Prevent “Up To 280,000 Teacher Layoffs, While Keeping Cops And Firefighters On The Job.” (“The American Jobs Act,” WhiteHouse.gov, Accessed 9/15/11)

Rebuilding Communities To Prevent Foreclosures

FACT SHEET: The Stimulus Was Supposed To Rebuild Communities And Reduce Foreclosures. “Addressing the Effect of Foreclosures in Our Hardest-Hit Communities:  As countless communities have seen their blocks consumed by more and more foreclosure signs, mayors and governors have not had the resources they need to address this growing crisis.  The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act helps communities rebuild by providing an infusion of over $10 billion to help expand the availability of quality affordable housing and support communities seeking to reduce the effects of foreclosures in their neighborhoods.” (“American Recovery And Reinvestment Act: A $150 Billion Investment In Our Nation’s Infrastructure,” The White House, 2/17/09)

RESULT: Since President Obama Took Office, U.S. Properties Have Received Over 7.3 Million Foreclosure Filings. (RealtyTrac, Accessed 9/19/11)

  • “New Foreclosure Starts Rose Sharply In August, Signaling A Slew Of Foreclosed Properties Will Be Dumped On The Already Bloated Housing Market In Early 2012.” New foreclosure starts rose sharply in August, signaling a slew of foreclosed properties will be dumped on the already bloated housing market in early 2012. ‘Notices of Default,’ the first stage of the foreclosure process, rose 33 percent month-to-month, according to a new report from RealtyTrac.” (Diana Olick, “Flood Of Foreclosures Heading To Housing Market,” CNBC, 9/15/11)

NOW: The White House Says The American Jobs Act Will “Focus on Distressed Commercial Properties and Redevelopment to Stabilize Communities.” “Focus on Distressed Commercial Properties and Redevelopment to Stabilize Communities: Many regions with concentrated home foreclosures also have concentrations of vacant commercial structures that weigh on property values and make it less likely that new businesses will come into the community and invest new capital. Project Rebuild will tackle this problem directly by allowing grantees to rebuild and repurpose distressed commercial real estate.” (Office Of The Press Secretary, “The American Jobs Act: Fact Sheet And Overview,” WhiteHouse.gov, 9/8/11)

Green Jobs Leading The Recovery

FACT SHEET: The Stimulus Was Supposed To Link Workers “To Good Jobs That Are Created By Federal Renewable Energy And Energy Efficiency Initiatives.” “The American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan will create a sustainable, public program that leverages significant private labor-management funds and provides quality workforce training linked to good jobs that are created by federal renewable energy and energy efficiency initiatives. Creating programs that quickly and effectively train workers is essential to economic and programmatic goals of the entire stimulus effort.” (“American Recovery And Reinvestment Act: Moving America Toward A Clean Energy Future,” The White House, 2/17/09)

  • White House Advisor Van Jones Said “Every Dollar Spent On Green Jobs Is Going To Be Out There Working Double-Time, Triple-Time.” “And as green jobs visionary Van Jones said at a conference this weekend, the green jobs element of the recovery package is also one of the most fiscally responsible in terms of bang for the buck: ‘Every dollar spent on green jobs is going to be out there working double-time, triple-time.’” (Jesse Lee, “A Good Week For Green Jobs,” WhiteHouse.gov, 2/25/09)

RESULT: Obama Promised His $38 Billion Green Energy Stimulus Program Would Create Or Save 65,000 Jobs But So Far It Only Has A Few Thousand Jobs To Show For It. “A $38.6 billion loan guarantee program that the Obama administration promised would create or save 65,000 jobs has created just a few thousand jobs two years after it began, government records show. The program — designed to jump-start the nation’s clean technology industry by giving energy companies access to low-cost, government-backed loans — has directly created 3,545 new, permanent jobs after giving out almost half the allocated amount, according to Energy Department tallies.” (Carol D. Leonnig and Steven Mufson, “Obama Green-Tech Program That Backed Solyndra Struggles To Create Jobs,” The Washington Post, 9/14/11)

  • “Solyndra … Was The Poster-Child For The Obama Administration’s Green Energy Program Until It Collapsed In Bankruptcy In Late August.” “Solyndra, a California-based company that produces solar panels, was the poster-child for the Obama administration’s green energy program until it collapsed in bankruptcy in late August. Two years before, the Department of Energy  appeared to rush to give the company a $535 million federal loan guarantee, without waiting for final copies of outside reviews of the deal meant to protect the taxpayers’ money.” (Lee Ferran, “Jon Stewart On Solyndra, The ‘Custom-Tailored Obama Scandal,” ABC News, 9/16/11)
  • When Solyndra Shuttered, 1,100 People Lost Their Jobs.” (Lee Ferran, “Jon Stewart On Solyndra, The ‘Custom-Tailored Obama Scandal,” ABC News, 9/16/11)

NOW: “Green Jobs, Green Jobs, Green Jobs – Where Were The Green Jobs In The Obama Jobs Plan Speech Delivered To Congress Last Night?” (Nino Marhcetti, “Green Jobs In Obama’s Speech If You Dig For Them,” Reuters, 9/12/11)

  • The President Hardly Mentioned Them But “If You Look, And Listen, Closely Though, You Do See Some Green Poking Out.” “A glance at the plethora of material put out by the White House doesn’t immediately suggest green jobs, which the President glazed over last night, were on his agenda. If you look, and listen, closely though, you do see some green poking out of the $447 billion American Jobs Act.” (Nino Marhcetti, “Green Jobs In Obama’s Speech If You Dig For Them,” Reuters, 9/12/11)