Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Did somebody say 'more stimulus'?

Not to worry. I'm sure the Republicans will be happy to share responsibility for the lousy employment numbers that might have been averted if the stimulus had been big enough in the first place.

With economists forecasting that unemployment could hit 10 percent before job growth returns, perhaps in mid-2010, Democrats face month after month of bad news on the jobs front in a midterm election year, when a president’s party typically loses Congressional seats. Charlie Cook, a longtime nonpartisan election analyst, said last week that he was raising the odds of Democrats losing their House majority to about 50-50.

Even a modest stimulus package that mostly maintains current programs would ignite a debate about the effectiveness of the original $787 billion plan, stoking Republicans’ arguments that the package of spending and tax cuts was a waste of taxpayers’ money. While most economists agree with Democrats that job losses would have been worse without the stimulus, Mr. Obama remains on the defensive for his initial promise that it would save or create 3.5 million jobs.
The 40-percent of the stimulus package wasted on non-stimulative tax cuts could have been used to put people back to work.

And I'm sure that the GOP will be eager to acknowledge that in the spirit of bipartisanship.