WASHINGTON, DC – House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today regarding the President’s remarks on the economy in Springfield, Missouri:
“The American people must wonder whether the Bush Administration lives in a sort of alternative universe when it comes to the economy. Today, in an annual economic report and on the stump in Missouri, the President essentially said the economy was fine and predicted that 2.6 million jobs would be created this year. But even the President’s most ardent supporters have to wonder whether the Bush economic team is infected with a bad case of wishful thinking.
“Last year, the President confidently predicted that his tax plan would create 1.7 million jobs. Instead, the economy lost 53,000 jobs, while the manufacturing sector alone lost 500,000 jobs. The fact is President Bush has the worst record of job creation since the Great Depression. Furthermore, he has no real plan to create jobs beyond crossing his fingers and hoping that the new unemployment figures released the first Monday of every month vindicate his failed economic policies.
“More and more, the Administration sounds like a broken record when it tells jobless Americans, ‘Wait until next month.’ But wishful thinking does not pay the mortgage, and sunny predictions do not feed the kids.
“There are nearly 8.4 million jobless Americans today, and another 5 million who are working part time who would rather be working full time. In fact, we have the highest rate of long-term unemployment in 20 years. The Administration’s only response has been, ‘Things are getting better.’ But people in the ‘Show Me’ state are asking this Administration to show them the jobs.
“Instead of delivering overly optimistic speeches in politically competitive states like Missouri, the Bush Administration should focus on crafting a plan to create jobs for unemployed Americans. Highly orchestrated political events won’t create jobs or restore the Bush Administration’s hobbled credibility on this issue.
“Democrats have a job creation plan that would create 1 million jobs in one year. I hope that the President will work this year with Democrats and Republicans to craft and implement a real job creation plan.”