News / USA

White House: June Jobs Numbers 'Disappointing'

President Barack Obama turns to head back to the Oval Office after delivering a statement on the monthly jobs report in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, July 8, 2011
President Barack Obama turns to head back to the Oval Office after delivering a statement on the monthly jobs report in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, July 8, 2011

Multimedia

Audio
Kent Klein

With the United States' unemployment rate at its highest level this year, President Barack Obama is calling on lawmakers to pass a series of his administration's proposals to improve the economy.  Opposition Republicans are blaming the president's policies for the country's economic troubles.  Even White House officials are calling Friday's jobs numbers "disappointing."

The U.S. Labor Department says only 18,000 jobs were added to the nation's economy in June, the smallest increase in nine months.  That pushed the unemployment rate up one-tenth of one percent last month, to 9.2 percent.

President Obama acknowledged Friday that the economy is not producing enough jobs.

"Today's job report confirms what most Americans already know, we still have a long way to go and a lot of work to do to give people the security and opportunity that they deserve," Obama said.

The president said more than two million private-sector jobs have been added in 16 months.  But he said with more than eight million jobs lost in the recession, the economy still has a big hole to fill.

In the White House Rose Garden, Obama told reporters numerous factors have been slowing the economy's rebound, including high gasoline prices, the debt crisis in Greece and the tsunami and earthquake in Japan.

To boost the economic recovery, the president called on Congress to pass several administration-backed proposals.  Among them are free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea.  

"Today, Congress can advance trade agreements that will help businesses sell more American-made goods and services to Asia and South America, supporting thousands of jobs here at home," Obama added.  "That could be done right now."

Obama said the unemployment report adds new urgency to his talks with congressional leaders on reducing the government deficit and raising the legal borrowing limit.

The president said continuing uncertainty over the debt limit is one factor keeping businesses from hiring.  He said an agreement must be reached soon.

"The American people sent us here to do the right thing, not for party, but for country," Obama said.  "So we are going to work together to get things done on their behalf.  That is the least that they should expect of us, not the most that they should expect of us."

The U.S. government has until August 2 to raise the debt ceiling from its current $14.3 trillion.

The Obama administration is proposing to cut about $4 trillion from the deficit by reducing spending, increasing revenue and ending some tax breaks.  Opposition Republicans want to reduce the deficit by cutting spending, but House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner says they will not support any tax increases.

"You have heard me say it before, a debt limit increase that raises taxes or fails to make serious spending cuts won't pass the House," said Boehner.

Top Republicans slammed the administration's handling of the economy.  They called the June unemployment figures "completely unacceptable," and blamed excessive government spending for the lack of new jobs.

Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, a Republican presidential candidate, said President Obama is "out of answers and running out of time."

You May Like

ASEAN Ministers Set to Push for South China Sea Agreements

According to documents obtained by VOA Khmer, ministers will stand up for 'freedom of navigation, unimpeded lawful maritime commerce, trade and over flight' More

Puerto Rico Defaults on $58M Debt Payment

Payment was due Saturday, default is first in country's 117 years as a United States possession More

Turkish Public Fears Jihadists More Than Kurds

Turkey facing twin threats of terrorism by Islamic State and PKK Kurdish separatists, says President Erdogan’s ruling AK Party 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.
Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Communityi
X
Sharon Behn
August 03, 2015 2:23 PM
A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Community

A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Bangkok Warned It Soon Could Be Submerged

Italy's Venice and America's New Orleans are not the only cities gradually submerging. The nearly ten million residents of the Bangkok urban area now must confront warnings the city could become uninhabitable in a few decades. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from the Thai capital.
Video

Video Inclusive Gym Gets People With Disabilities in Fitness Spirit

Individuals with special needs are 58 percent more likely to be obese than the general population. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, they also have an increased likelihood of anxiety, depression and social isolation. But a sports club outside Washington wants to make a difference in these people's lives. With Carol Pearson narrating, VOA's June Soh reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Special Olympics Show Competitors' Skill, Determination

Special Olympics competitions will wrap up Saturday in Los Angeles, and the closing ceremony for athletes with intellectual disabilities will be held Sunday night. In a week of competition, athletes have shown what they can do through skill and determination. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Shooter’s Grill: Serving Food with a Touch of the Second Amendment

Shooter's Grill, a restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, attracts visitors from all over the world as well as local patrons. The reason? Waitresses openly carry loaded firearms as they serve food, and customers are welcome to carry them, too. VOA's Enming Liu and Lin Yang paid a visit to Shooter's Grill, and heard different opinions about this unique establishment.
Video

Video Despite Controversy, Business Owner Continues Sale of Confederate Flags

At Cooter’s, a store in rural Sperryville, Virginia, about 120 kilometers west of Washington, D.C., Confederate flags are flying off the shelves. The red, white and blue battle flag, with 13 white stars representing the Confederate states, was carried by southern forces during the U.S. Civil War in the 1860s. The South had seceded from the Union over several key issues of disagreement, including slavery. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs