With President Obama and Governor Culver touring the State of Iowa trumpeting their borrowing schemes as the end to the recession and the fuel that will revitalize the struggling economy, unemployment in Iowa and nationally remains abysmal. If the state and country is in recovery mode – as the Governor and President proclaim – it is a jobless recovery.
On April 16, 2010, the Iowa Department of Workforce Development posted its March 2010 unemployment statistics, the data is bleak as more Iowans are out of work than last month. The statewide estimate of unemployed Iowans increased to 114,600, up 2,700 from February. Today, 6.8% of the population in Iowa does not have a job, a slight increase from the 6.7% of Iowans without work last month and much higher than the 5.5% or 91,300 jobless Iowans recorded a year ago.
On a national scale, 9.7% of the population is unemployed. A percentage that has remained stagnant over the past several months. Today, roughly 15 million Americans still do not have jobs.
On February 17, 2009, President Obama signed into law a $787 billion borrowing package that he claimed would help turn around the economy and ensure unemployment would not top 8%. At the time of the signing ceremony, there were 12.5 million Americans out of work, 7.6% of the population. Since that bill was signed into law, to date, an additional 2.5 million Americans have lost their jobs, more than 2 full percentage points higher than when the stimulus bill landed on the President’s desk.
Since “IJOBS” was signed into law, to date, an additional 18,400 jobs have been lost in the state…
Similarly, on May 14, 2009, Governor Culver signed into law a $830 million borrowing package. He too claimed that the borrow and spend approach would create as many as 30,000 jobs. At the time the Governor signed the bills, 96,200 Iowans were without work, 5.8% of the population. Since “IJOBS” was signed into law, to date, an additional 18,400 jobs have been lost in the state, a full percentage point higher than when the Governor’s pen was put to the paper.
It is no coincidence that these two approaches are yielding similar results, and clearly they’re not working. Republicans on the national level and on the state level knew it then and know it now, we cannot borrow and spend our way to economic prosperity. Unfortunately, the leadership in place doesn’t get it. And, patience is running thin throughout the unemployment lines in Iowa and all across the country. For the last year, the policies approved by Democratic leaders in Washington and Iowa have done nothing to create jobs. Yet, all across this state and country there are ribbon cutting ceremonies and town halls masked to make people think they have.
Republicans stand ready and committed to executing policies that give employers the ability to thrive and put Iowans back to work.