Obama ready to do more to stem job losses: official
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The stimulus plan enacted in February is slowing "the economic freefall" in the United States, but the federal government stands ready to act further to end the country's job losses, a member of President Barack Obama's budget office will tell Congress on Wednesday.
"The President is not satisfied -- and will not be satisfied -- until we are adding jobs again, providing Americans with the dignity of a job and a dependable income," Robert Nabors, deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget, says in prepared testimony obtained by Reuters.
"That's why we will continue to do whatever is necessary to put Americans back to work," Nabors adds.
Debate is erupting in Congress about how much impact the $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is having on the U.S. economy.
While leading Republicans say the country's skyrocketing unemployment rate of 9.5 percent proves the stimulus has done little to create or save jobs, some Democrats say the federal government may need to pass another measure to loosen the grips of the recession.
Nabors is charged with tracking the effects of the stimulus and says his office is preparing a tally of the jobs created or saved by the stimulus to be released October 10.
Still, he says, some of the plan's effects can already be seen. Nabors says the $17 billion rise in personal income in May, which was reported last week, was largely due to increased Social Security and veterans' payments and that schools are now receiving funds that will let them keep teachers employed.
He says the employment report released last Friday "made it clear that we face important challenges," but other indicators, such as orders for durable goods, show that in the near future the country will see "genuine economic expansion and crucial job creation."
(Reporting by Lisa Lambert; Editing Bernard Orr)
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