In the month of September, our nation’s labor market grew. We saw nonfarm payroll employment add 137,000 private sector jobs, exceeding expectations, and total nonfarm payroll jobs grow by 103,000. Additionally, we learned that we added 99,000 more jobs than was previous reported in the July and August jobs numbers. This is great news and I’m encouraged by much of the recent data we’re seeing.
However, the unemployment rate remained at 9.1 percent, and we know more must be done to speed our recovery.
Our economy responds positively when Washington curtails the public bickering and pledges to work together to solve the jobs crisis. This is evident through recent data, including a rise in second quarter gross domestic product growth, building permits, industrial production, export growth, consumer confidence, and personal spending. If we want these trends to continue, our lawmakers must match their words with votes and pass the American Jobs Act.
The policies this administration has pursued continue to add jobs back into the economy, but we need them to work faster and on an even bigger scale. Having created 2.6 million jobs over 19 consecutive months of private sector growth, we know what works – cutting payroll taxes for workers and businesses, extending unemployment insurance benefits and making smart investments in the American worker.
Now is not the time to abandon these proven pro-growth policies. Actions have consequences, and so does inaction.
In September, we saw 34,000 local government workers lose their jobs, including 24,000 teachers and other education professionals. The American Jobs Act will stop these losses and give municipalities the support they need to put our educators back in the classroom. We can all agree that giving our youth a first-class education is critical to our long-term success in the global economy.
Independent forecasters estimate that the American Jobs Act will create as many as 1.9 million jobs and increase economic growth by as much as two percentage points, if enacted. That’s more than 150,000 additional jobs a month.
It’s crucial that this bill gets an up-or-down vote in both the House and Senate. If leaders in Congress refuse to put the bill to a vote, respected forecasters believe we will see lackluster GDP and job growth in 2012.
Inaction is not a responsible option for any lawmaker who is serious about putting this country back to work.