Nothing seems to upset Barack Obama like being ignored. He is the President, after all, and "The One." Yet, as the negotiations on a debt ceiling deal bob-and-weave along in Washington, he grows visibly angrier that he's not getting his own way. This week he reportedly "stormed out" of discussions after Majority Leader Eric Cantor suggested the two sides were still pretty far apart on a solution.
If Obama wants some insight as to why the Republicans don't seem willing to just accept his ideas, he needs to look no further than his own record. As the following two charts demonstrate, the policies implemented by the Democrats on his watch the last couple of years are an abysmal failure, having come up far short of even his own promises.
The first chart is based upon the White House's own report of January 9, 2009, The Job Impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan. At the time, President-elect Obama was trying to sell Congress on his Stimulus plan. His economists projected unemployment rates if no action was taken and a much more favorable estimate if the Stimulus were passed and implemented. As we all know, the Democrat majority obliged him.
Added to the White House's projections is a green line showing what actually happened post-Stimulus. As you can see, the unemployment rate immediately exceeded Obama's worst case projections. The current unemployment rate is about 2 percentage points higher than he predicted would be the case with his Stimulus. That translates to more than 2.7 million additional people out of work than he promised under his plan.
In fact, unemployment after his $800 billion Stimulus is higher than he said it would be had the government done nothing at all, which leads to the conclusion that his Stimulus actually made the jobs market worse. The latest report from his Council of Economic Advisors confirms that conclusion by admitting there are now 300,000 fewer jobs "saved-or-created" by the Stimulus than they claimed just six months earlier.
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