(WASHINGTON) — Alan Krueger, chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, said the jobs numbers released on Friday are an example of recovery, but he warned that sequestration cuts are a “headwind” on job growth.
“While the recovery was gaining traction before sequestration took effect, these arbitrary and unnecessary cuts to government services will be a headwind in the months to come, and will cut key investments in the Nation’s future competitiveness. The Congressional Budget Office has estimated that the sequester will reduce employment by 750,000 full-time equivalent jobs by the end of the year,” Krueger said in a statement.
“Now is not the time for Washington to impose more self-inflicted wounds on the economy. The Administration continues to urge Congress to replace the sequester with balanced deficit reduction, while working to put in place measures to put more Americans back to work like rebuilding our roads and bridges and promoting American manufacturing,” he said. “The president will continue to press Congress to act on measures he called for in the State of the Union to promote job growth, ensure workers have the skills they need to compete, and help hardworking Americans make a decent living.”
The unemployment rate dropped to 7.6 percent in March but only 88,000 jobs were added.
House Speaker John Boehner criticized President Obama for unemployment higher than what he had promised and urged the president to produce a balanced budget next week that will not include tax increases in order to reform entitlement programs.
“The president’s policies continue to make it harder for Americans to find work. Hundreds of thousands fled the workforce last month and unemployment remains far above what the Obama administration promised when it enacted its ‘stimulus’ spending plan,” Boehner said in a statement.
He urged the president to “follow the House and outline a balanced budget next week – one that includes entitlement reforms that are not conditional on enactment of more tax increases, which will suppress growth instead of encourage it.”
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Theodore Schleifer, CNN
Stephen Collinson, CNN
Stephen Collinson, CNN
Ruth Brown, Idaho Press-Tribune