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Reviewing Democrat Promises on Jobs and Unemployment Benefits

April 07, 2014

First, Democrats promised their trillion-dollar stimulus plan would create millions of jobs.  It didn’t.

  • Democrat projection of job creation after 2009 stimulus: +3.675 million (through December 2010)
  • Actual change in jobs after 2009 stimulus: -2.530 million (through December 2010, or 6.2 million fewer jobs than projected) 

Next, Democrats promised their stimulus plan would reduce the unemployment rate to 5 percent.  It hasn’t.

  • Democrat projection for unemployment rate in March 2014: 5.0 percent
  • Actual unemployment rate in March 2014: 6.7 percent (34 percent higher than projected)

Sources: January 2009 Romer/Bernstein Report (“Administration Prediction With Stimulus Plan”), and Department of Labor, Unemployment Rate.

Today, Democrats continue to promise extending unemployment benefits a 13th time will somehow create thousands of jobs.  It won’t.

  • President Obama: “Independent economists have shown that extending emergency unemployment insurance actually helps the economy, actually creates new jobs.”
  • Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi: “Economists agree that unemployment benefits remain one of the best ways to grow the economy in a very immediate way.”
  • Rep. Sandy Levin: “Unemployment insurance helps promote economic growth — CBO estimates 200,000 fewer jobs in 2014 without extension.”
  • Majority Leader Harry Reid: “Failing to restore emergency assistance would not only be a crushing blow to the long-term unemployed, it would be a blow to our economy. Americans use their unemployment benefits to buy food and fuel at local gas stations, to pay the landlord or to purchase a child a winter coat at a local department store. That’s why for every $1 we spend on unemployment insurance, the economy grows by $1.50.”

In fact, recent research suggests that extending unemployment benefits actually stifles job creation by employers.