Pioneer Editorial: So where are all the jobs, GOP?
Two months into the new session of Congress, and we've yet seen any movement toward creating new jobs in America.
The Republican takeover of the U.S. House and narrowing the gap in the U.S. Senate with the Democrats was predicated on a November election that focused on the economy and jobs. Last year, for their part, Democrats in control of Congress passed a $900 million stimulus package that has helped turn the economy around, but hasn't seen large numbers of people return to work.
Republicans who campaigned on doing something better to create jobs than the Democrats' stimulus package seem to have moved on to something else now that Congress is off and running. Perhaps tained by the tea party surge, Republicans now seek a smaller government and control of the burgeoning federal deficit -- both moves that will stifle job creation and retention in the public sector.
If the action of the Republicans causes thousands of government jobs to go away, then "so be it," says House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio.
According to an Associated Press analysis, planned GOP cuts to Head Start of more than $1 billion would lead to the layoffs of about 55,000 teachers and staff. The House GOP plan to eliminate nearly $700 million in Title I grants to schools with disadvantaged students could see 10,000 teachers and staff lose their jobs.
Meanwhile, the private sector continues to struggle along, with a 9 percent unemployment rate. More people applied for unemployment benefits last week, a week after the biggest drop in three years. Some 14 million people remain out of work.
Up until the mid-term elections, the Republicans went after the Democrats, demanding that the Dems show where they intend to create jobs, how soon and where.
It's only fair game now to ask those same questions of the Republicans. Where are the jobs? And how do you intend to create enough jobs to pull the nation back to pre-Great Recession employment?