For Immediate Release
Liz Rose (202) 587-1638 LRose@ourfuture.org
Anemic Jobs Numbers Point to Long Period of High Unemployment; Conservative Budget Cuts Are Undermining Recovery
WASHINGTON - Roger Hickey, co-director of Campaign for America’s Future reacted to today's unemployment numbers: Statement from Roger Hickey:
"The May jobs report shows only 54,000 new jobs, with marked decreased employment in the government sector.
"The anemic employment picture reported today shows that conservative budget cutting threatens to throw an already-weak economy back into recession. With European austerity policies crippling global growth, high energy prices, and the end of fiscal and Federal Reserve monetary stimulus, the US government is now fixated on destructive budget cutting. As a result, it is now clear that Americans, unless we adopt new job creation policies, can expect a long period of high unemployment – not the robust growth necessary to create jobs and reduce the number of people looking for work. Because of cutbacks in state governments, this month’s jobs numbers are especially disappointing, demonstrating that this is not the time for government to be sending pink slips to workers while we are still trying to climb out of a recession.
“Polls demonstrate that the American majority cares more about chronic joblessness than budget deficits. Now, as the slow recovery threatens to stall out, the most important thing Congress and the President can do is to back away from negotiations to dramatically cut back on health and retirement program. And if we really want robust job creation that both parties claim they want, we will need an emergency program of expanded public investment. We cannot let high levels of unemployment become the new normal.
"And after the economy actually recovers, we can pay for it by raising taxes on millionaires and billionaires. The tenth anniversary of the Bush Tax cuts is June 7, 2011, and Americans are counting the costs of that decade of rewarding the rich while ignoring public investment that fuels productive growth and job creation.
"The U.S. economy is puttering along at a tepid growth rate of 2 to 3 percent – not fast enough to put Americans back to work. The private sector is focused on profits and not on productivity. Roughly 9 percent of Americans who want to go to work cannot find job."
The Campaign for America’s Future is the strategy center for the progressive movement. Our goal is to forge the enduring progressive majority needed to realize the America of shared prosperity and equal opportunity that our country was meant to be.