In the first year of President Barack Obama’s term, the country lost about 4.2 million private-sector jobs. But as of last month there are now more private-sector jobs in the United States than there were in January 2009, when President Obama took office. You read that right. Since bottoming out in early 2010, the country has added back 4.2 million private-sector jobs, and is now into positive territory for President Obama’s term.
Unfortunately, the news is not nearly so good when it comes to the public sector, where there are currently 607,000 fewer people working than there were when President Obama took office.
The chart below tells the whole story. Under President Obama, the private sector experienced a relatively robust recovery, and is now back to where it started when he took office. But due in large part to spending cuts at the state and local level, the public sector continues to shed jobs, and as a result, the overall jobs picture in the United States remains weak.
Keep this chart in mind the next time you hear someone rail about “big government” and complain about the slow pace of overall job creation.
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Managing Director, Economic Policy