News / USA

Obama Welcomes Job Report, Says More Work Ahead

Multimedia

President Barack Obama is pointing to the latest monthly U.S. government employment report saying it shows his policies are continuing to be successful in helping the nation recover from the economic recession.  The president says despite the good news, it's clear more work needs to be done.

The U.S. economy registered its largest increase in jobs in three years in March, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics reporting that 162,000 jobs were added.

However, the overall unemployment picture remained the same, a national 9.7 percent rate for the third straight month, a fact that provided more fuel for opposition Republicans and other critics of the president.

In a speech in North Carolina, the president focused on the positive, noting that a year ago the economy was losing some 700,000 jobs each month.

"Today is an encouraging day.  We learned that the economy actually produced a substantial number of jobs instead of losing a substantial number of jobs.  We are beginning to turn the corner," he said.

The president added that despite the good news in the March jobs report more work remains to be done, saying the government will not be able to reverse the impact of the recession overnight or the toll it has taken on Americans.  

Echoing this was the head of the president's Council of Economic Advisors, Christina Romer, who said recent positive monthly figures are an "important beginning" though it will take many months of robust growth to turn the economy around and put Americans back to work.

Critics noted that the 162,000 job figure was below the 190,000 to 200,000 level the administration had hoped for, and the fact that 48,000 of the jobs added in March were temporary government positions linked to conducting the U.S. census.

In a flurry of emails, Republicans asserted the president has been unsuccessful in private sector job growth, and would need to add 750,000 jobs each month for the rest of this year to reach a previous target of 3.7 million jobs by the end of 2010.

In an editorial in a newspaper in North Carolina, where the president was speaking, House of Representatives Republican leader John Boehner asserted that Americans were suffering as a result of new health care reform legislation and government bailouts.

Among the ongoing worrying aspects of the job picture is the fact that the so-called "underemployment rate" for Americans who have been unable to find work or have given up hope of locating a job actually rose slightly to 16.9 percent.

In an off-camera briefing for reporters, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs called the March job figures very encouraging, noting that the economy gained 54,000 jobs in the first quarter of this year.

At the same time, echoing the president's remarks in North Carolina, Gibbs again pointed to the 8.5 million jobs lost since the U.S. recession began in 2007 during the administration of former President George W. Bush, saying the numbers in the latest report are still a genuine cause for concern.

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Bosnian Massacre Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs UN countermeasure More

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs