"The unemployment numbers released today underscores what I have been saying for months--Congress should be focusing on real job-creation legislation. It should be Congress's most important domestic priority right now," said U.S. Rep. Elton Gallegly (R-Ventura & Santa Barbara Counties).
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the national unemployment rate reached 10.2 percent in October, the highest rate since 1983.
"I voted against the trillion-dollar stimulus bill in February because it was unfocused and spent more on social programs than job creation. Unfortunately for the American people, I have been proven right. Unemployment was 7.9 percent nationally when President Obama signed the bill in February. It's now 10.2 percent and growing. Very few jobs were created by the stimulus, as reflected in today's unemployment numbers.
"Of those jobs that were created, more than half are government, not private sector, jobs. That means more deficit spending or higher taxes to cover government payrolls with no goods or services created to stimulate the economy. Likewise, the health care and cap and trade bills being pushed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will destroy millions of more jobs through burdensome and unnecessary regulations on small businesses and higher taxes on businesses and the American people.
"We can and must do better.
"I supported a stimulus package that actually would have created jobs by giving small businesses--which employ half of all Americans--the incentives to innovate and expand, thereby producing new jobs. Congress should repeal the stimulus package passed in February and pass this bill now.
"I supported an energy bill that would have created more jobs and enhanced our national security by expanding energy production in all areas--including wind, solar, nuclear and natural gas. I urge Speaker Pelosi to allow a vote on this bill.
"I support a healthcare plan that does no harm by opening up competition and reining in frivolous lawsuits and which helps the working poor and those with preexisting conditions to obtain coverage. Again, I urge the speaker to rescind her $1.3 trillion healthcare bill and push for real reform that creates, not destroys, jobs."