Oct 7, 2009
Faced with an increasing number of job cuts despite pumping trillions in the American economy, the Obama administration is considering a mixture of tax cuts and spending programs to stem job losses in the United States. It will entail an additional stimulus without carrying the stigma of a bailout.
Implementing these proposals is another matter because the White House needs to balance the concern about unemployment with the issue of the gaping budget deficit. It is estimated to be at $1.6 trillion for 2009 and $1.4 trillion in 2010. New programs are bound to be politically sensitive. In fact, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs clarified that there “were no plans” to pass a second stimulus similar to the $787 billion approved earlier this year.
Instead, the White House is merely looking into extending the programs that are already in place. He further added that the “economic team is certainly looking at and working on any way that we can create more jobs.” Among the measures discussed include boosting the transportation spending and extending the tax credit for first-time home buyers.
According to Chris Van Hollen “If there was to be another round of stimulus, additional infrastructure would be at the top of the list.” Investments in roads and bridges would be popular among Democrats. No matter what lawmakers and the White House decide to call these programs, financial experts think of it as economic stimulus. Dean Baker of the Center for Economic and Policy Research stated that these are stimulus spending and that “there’s no two ways about it.”
At this point, the Obama administration hasn’t made any final decisions yet. Jen Psaki, a spokesperson from the White House, said that they are still exploring the “best options”. Looking for the best solution is certainly a necessity in these troubled times especially with the health care bill being pushed in Congress.
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