Co-Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, released the following statement today after the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that employers added 114,000 American jobs in September.
"After the largest economic crisis since the Great Depression, America's unemployment rate has now fallen below 8 percent for the first time since 2009. Even more encouraging, in my home state of Minnesota, it is below 6 percent. Thanks to President Obama's leadership, the worst of the economic downturn is behind us. The country can now focus on investing to restore the American Dream: making sure our children can afford an education, repairing our roads and bridges, and ensuring access to quality health care.
"We can continue on the President's path or we can take the path of the Paul Ryan Congress, which has blocked every good-faith effort to invest in jobs. As Co-Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, I introduced the 99% Act, emergency jobs legislation that would have created 5 million jobs in two years. The Ryan Congress ignored it. The Ryan Congress did not even vote on President Obama's American Jobs Act that would create 1.9 million jobs in the first year alone, including tens of thousands in Minnesota. Instead, the first Republican spending bill they took up in 2011 cut more than $23 million from education funding in my state of Minnesota, and cut student loans for nearly 150,000 Minnesota students. And the proposed Ryan Budget would have cost over 2 million jobs, according to an independent study by the Economic Policy institute.
"Now is not the time for us to pull our focus away from job creation. At this pace, it will still take over a decade for all Americans looking for work to be able to find it. We need leaders who make job creation their number one priority. President Obama is that leader."