A little over 100 days ago, President Barack Obama promised the American people the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will “save or create more than 3.5 million jobs over the next two years.”
Obama signed the Recovery Act into law on Feb. 17, 2009. Since then, 1.6 million Americans have lost their jobs. The unemployment rate is at its highest level in 26 years.
So, yesterday, Obama and Vice President Joe Biden announced the administration is ramping up implementation of the stimulus plan. The “Roadmap to Recovery” is “a summer initiative designed to accelerate the Administration’s recovery efforts.”
The Administration’s focus has shifted from funding “shovel-ready” projects to spending the money now.
Obama gave Cabinet secretaries their marching orders:
So I’m pleased to know that having put the infrastructure in place, having gotten your teams up and running, many of the criteria by which money is going out in a responsible way that protects taxpayers, having been created, now we’re in a position to really accelerate.
And so the goal here is that we’re going to create or save 600,000 jobs over the next 100 days. Joe highlighted some of the specific commitments that we’re making to keep the recovery moving forward: keeping teachers in the classroom, cops on the streets, providing summer jobs for youth that are particularly hard-hit in this job market, breaking ground on hundreds of new projects all across the country in clean energy and transportation, and so on.