The new year got off to an anemic start as employers added 157,000 jobs in the month of January. That is short of the 170,000 economists had expected and just more than half of what is needed to sustain population growth.
Reacting to the news, Congressman Jack Kingston (R-GA) called for immediate action to encourage job creation.
"We must do better," said Kingston. "Failing to provide leadership at this critical time for our economy risks this kind of sluggish growth becoming the new normal. It's ironic that this report comes at the same time the President is disbanding his Jobs Council. We should be using this time to recommit ourselves to encouraging job creation, business expansion, and prosperity for working families."
The disappointing jobs report comes in the same week the nation learned that the economy had unexpectedly contracted in the fourth quarter of 2012. That marks the first such contraction since 2009.
Kingston argues that the Obama Administration's attempts to revive the economy through deficit spending are misguided. Instead, he believes government is part of the problem and must get out of the way of private sector growth.
"With the advancements in production, America could be an energy exporter again but this Administration is standing in the way," he said. "It should be our policy to advance safe energy production to harness America's potential, bring down prices, and create jobs."
Beyond energy, Kingston points to tax reform and repealing overly-burdensome government regulations as key to creating jobs.
"America has the highest corporate tax rate in the world and one of the most complicated tax codes," he said. "Let's scrap the tax code and replace it with one that is fairer, flatter, and more conducive to growth. By eliminating special interest loopholes, we can bring down rates for everyone."
"We also need a government that works with entrepreneurs, not against them," he continued. "The bureaucrats that tried to equate spilled milk with the environmental damage of crude oil need to be reined in. Let's review regulations and get rid of the ones that are tripping up hard working individuals who are pursuing the American dream."
Having recently been appointed the chairman of a subcommittee that oversees the Department of Labor's budget, Kingston pledged to advance reforms that would do just that.