Obama’s stimulus package turns five

Haley Hansen

Yesterday marked the five-year anniversary of President Obama signing into law the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, a $830 billion bill that, according to the Wall Street Journal, was created with the intention to stop unemployment from rising above 8 percent.

Despite high expectations when the bill was originally signed, opinions on the actual outcome of the bill vary.

According to a blog post by the Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors Jason Furman sent out by the White House Press Office, the bill was passed during the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression and created an average of 1.6 million jobs a year through the end of 2012.  Furman also said 9 million jobs were cumulatively created with both the Recovery Act and other fiscal measures over the same time period.

“The Recovery Act had a substantial positive impact on the economy, helped to avert a second Great Depression, and made targeted investments that will pay pidends long after the Act has fully phased out,” Furman wrote.

Others aren’t as enthusiastic about the bill’s performance.  

“The ‘stimulus’ has turned out to be a classic case of big promises and big spending with little results,” Speaker of the House John Boehner told The Washington Times.“Five years and hundreds of billions of dollars later, millions of families are still asking, ‘Where are the jobs?’”