The President and Vice President met with Cabinet officials today to discuss the wide-ranging effects of the Recovery Act, as well as an ambitious plan announced by the Vice President this morning to accelerate efforts for the next 100 days called the Roadmap to Recovery
. In remarks before
the meeting, the Vice President called these projects ambitious but realistic:
A couple weeks ago, I asked the Cabinet members to give me a list of new projects that they were absolutely certain of they could get up and running in the second hundred days that would build momentum and accelerate the job growth in the next hundred days.
And they each came back with new projects. The 10 most significant of those projects, Mr. President, we've put in this book that we're going to give you -- it's called "Roadmap to Recovery"
Some of these projects include creating and building 1,129 health care facilities, improving veterans’ medical centers across the country, putting 5,500 law enforcement officers on the streets, and creating 135,000 education jobs. In total, the Vice President said 600,000 jobs will be created in the next 100 days.
In May, we lost 345,000 jobs, which marks the smallest monthly job loss since September but which nonetheless represents 345,000 terrible stories. Therefore, the Administration is boosting recovery efforts to build on the progress we’ve already made. The President emphasized that although we have a long way to go, the American people are already seeing progress:
Now I know that there are some who, despite all evidence to the contrary, still don't believe in the necessity and promise of this Recovery Act, and I would suggest to them that they talk to the companies who, because of this plan, scrapped the idea of laying off employees and in fact decided to hire employees. Tell that to the Americans who receive that unexpected call saying, come back to work. Tell it to the Americans poised to benefit from critical investments that this plan makes in our long-term growth and prosperity.
In the end, that's the only measure of progress, is whether or not the American people are seeing some progress in their own lives. And so although we've seen some stabilizing in the financial markets and credit spreads have gone down, we're seeing a reduction in the fear that gripped the market just a few months ago, stock market is up a little bit -- all that stuff is not our ultimate goal. Our ultimate goal is making sure that the average family out there -- mom working, dad working -- that they are able to pay their bills, feel some job security, make their mortgage payments; the small business owner there is starting to see customers coming back in, they can make payroll, they can even think about hiring a little bit more and expanding. That's the measure, how ordinary families are helping to rebuild America once more.
In the first 100 days, the Recovery Act provided immediate relief with a tax break for 95 percent of Americans, expanded unemployment insurance and food assistance programs, and launched more than 4,000 infrastructure improvement projects, which will continue to create jobs in the next 100 days. The Recovery Act has also provided record investments in new technologies, which will lay the foundation for the future economy. We are now going in the right direction, and this summer we will go down that road even faster.
(President Barack Obama listens as Vice President Joe Biden (left) presents the report on the Roadmap to Recovery as he meets with his Cabinet in the State Dining Room of the White House, Monday, June 8, 2009. Looking on at right are Attorney General Eric Holder and Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan. Official White House Photo by Pete Souza.)