Obama, Democrats Eyeing Further Stimulus Projects

Obama, Democrats Eyeing Further Stimulus Projects

The White House argued that its $800 billion stimulus plan passed in 2009 would bring down the unemployment rate to 5.6%. And even as Friday’s jobs report showed that the unemployment rate is 7.7%, Democrats and President Barack Obama may push for a new round of stimulus in the fiscal cliff negotiations. 

In his initial offer to avert the fiscal cliff, President Barack Obama proposed at least $50 billion a year in new stimulus projects that would essentially offset the spending cuts he proposed. 

Rep. Sandy Levin (D-MI), the top Democrat on the House Ways and Means Committee, told The Hill that the stimulus option should be kept open during negotiations. 

During the 2012 campaign, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney attacked Obama over the limited effect of his stimulus programs. Some of Obama’s false promises are worth revisiting as the administration floats yet another round of stimulus proposals. 

When signing the stimulus bill in February of 2009, Obama said the plan “rewards responsibility” and would lift “two million Americans from poverty by ensuring that anyone who works hard does not have to raise a child below the poverty line.”

“So as a whole, this plan will help poor and working Americans pull themselves into the middle class in a way we haven’t seen in nearly 50 years,” Obama said then

Obama’s economy not only has decimated the middle class, but it has not seen a reduction in the number of poor people or those living in poverty by any measure. In fact, by some formulas, nearly 50 million Americans can be considered “poor.” And, as the jobs report showed, more are just giving up and leaving the workforce. 

Obama could not even deliver promises he made to government workers and unions about the number of shovel ready jobs that would be available, even joking in 2011 that “shovel-ready was not as shovel-ready as we expected.”

One of the greatest selling points of Obama’s stimulus program was the so-called “green economy,” which also has turned out to be a disaster.

Obama said his investments and loans in green energy companies like Solyndra would help spur economic growth with so-called “green collar” jobs, but Obama’s green energy boondoggles have been the source of some of the Obama administration’s greatest scandals involving crony capitalism and kickbacks to donors. 

Companies like Solyndra and Abound Solar, for instance, received government-backed loans even though there was more than sufficient evidence that those companies were on the verge of insolvency. Obama’s green energy grants and bailouts to companies to design electric cars (Chevy Volt, Fisker Automative) failed spectacularly and those electric cars are not even going to be built.  

During the 2012 campaign, Obama, undeterred by his green energy failures, vowed he would continue to bet on green energy projects during his second term, and his initial offer to Republicans to avert the fiscal cliff shows Obama was not bluffing on the stump when he was talking up more stimulus projects.