Limbaugh distorts AP analysis on stimulus to falsely claim no jobs have been created
Research ››› ››› ZACHARY PLEAT
On the January 11 edition of his radio show, Rush Limbaugh falsely distorted an Associated Press analysis of road and bridge construction to advance the falsehood that stimulus spending has had no effect on job creation. In fact, the AP analysis reported that the stimulus "has produced some jobs" and that AP "did not try to measure results of the broader aid that also was in the first stimulus"; moreover the Congressional Budget Office found that the stimulus created up to 1.6 million jobs.
Limbaugh claims AP analysis shows the stimulus is a failure
Limbaugh: "The stimulus ... has had no effect on jobs." On the January 11 edition of his radio show, Limbaugh claimed that an Associated Press analysis of road and bridge construction projects and the impact on local unemployment levels showed that "the stimulus money that has been spent so far has had no effect on jobs, none, not anywhere." [The Rush Limbaugh Show, 01/11/10]
In fact, AP analysis reported that the stimulus "has produced some jobs"
AP: "The stimulus has produced some jobs" and "helped ease the recession." In an article headlined "Stimulus Watch: Unemployment Unchanged by Projects," the Associated Press reported, "The stimulus has produced some jobs. A growing body of economic evidence suggests that government programs, including a $700 billion bank bailout program and the $787 billion stimulus, have helped ease the recession. A Rutgers University study on Friday, for instance, found that all stimulus efforts have slowed the rise in unemployment in many states."
AP analysis limited to "road and bridge spending," and "did not try to measure results of the broader aid that was also in the first stimulus." In the article, the AP explicitly stated that they analyzed only "the effects of road and bridge spending on local unemployment and construction employment" and "did not try to measure results of the broader aid that also was in the first stimulus like tax cuts, unemployment benefits or money for states."
CBO estimated the stimulus created as many as 1.6 million jobs
CBO estimated additional 600,000 to 1.6 million people employed, GDP increase of 1.2 percent to 3.2 percent due to Recovery Act. In a November report, the CBO stated:
CBO estimates that in the third quarter of calendar year 2009, an additional 600,000 to 1.6 million people were employed in the United States, and real (inflation-adjusted) gross domestic product (GDP) was 1.2 percent to 3.2 percent higher, than would have been the case in the absence of ARRA (see Table 1). Those ranges are intended to reflect the uncertainty of such estimates and to encompass most economists' views on the effects of fiscal stimulus. [CBO's Estimated Impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act on Employment and Economic Output as of September 2009, November 2009]