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Since Stimulus, 1.9 Million Fewer Americans Working

Unemployed Teachers at Los Angeles Job Fair
(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

It’s been 2 years and four months since President Obama and Congress passed what was supposed to be the largest economic jump start in US history.  But it doesn’t appear to have worked.

Enough time has passed since it’s passing to gauge full-term effects of job creation and economic growth.  According to statistics from the Federal Bureau of Labor (BLS) 1.9 million fewer people are working in America then in February 2009, when the stimulus kicked into full effect.

Former White House Chief Economist Larry Summers says while the actual number of people with jobs has gone up slightly, employment rates keep dipping because of two factors:  1) more candidates entering the workforce from college and high school, and 2) the economony-while technically growing with new jobs, keeps losing jobs as businesses suffer in the uncertain financial enviornment.   Both the BLS data, and Summers (from a Washington Post Op-Ed piece) show the economy is not producing jobs fast enough, disputing Obama’s claims that the economy is recovering and producing new jobs.   Another telling statistic: the unemployment rate, which was at  9.1 percent, according to the BLS.

Since Obama took office, the unemployment rate has rocketed from 5’s and six’s to well above 9 percent for the bulk of his term-including since the stimulus passed. While small fluctuations occur, a few tenths of a percent here and there, the significant, long term drop that was expected has not happened.  Obama has the highest unemployment rate for the longest period of time of any president dating back over the last 31 years.

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