The Obama administration's signature stimulus program has been an "absolute success" so far, Vice President Joe Biden said Wednesday.
Biden, who heads up the administration's effort to implement the $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), said the legislation will have saved or created between 3 and 3.5 million jobs before the end of 2010.
"An absolute success," Biden termed the stimulus during an interview on "Charlie Rose" to air Wednesday evening. "We will create over 3.5 million or save over 3.5 million jobs before this is over."
Republicans, meanwhile, have criticized the spending program as having done little to aid employment, pointing to administration projections that unemployment would never exceed 8 percent if the law were enacted.
The current unemployment rate stands at 9.5 percent through the end of April, with jobless figures for the month of May set to be unveiled on Friday. Economists are projecting a spike of 550,000 jobs created last month, though that figure may be padded by temporary workers hired by the government to carry out the Census.
Biden, who got in trouble this week for saying that unemployment might not creep down to 6 percent for years, said this evening that it's actually "unknowable" as to when enough jobs will be created to get unemployment to that level.
"The answer to that question is unknowable for three reasons," the vice president said, pointing to the debt crisis in Europe, difficulty in measuring consumer confidence, and whether or not the U.S. economy would catch some "good breaks."
Republicans continued to hammer away at the administration on Wednesday, with House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) attacking President Barack Obama in the wake of a speech by the president in Pittsburgh that took aim at the GOP's economic policies.
"The president promised his ‘stimulus’ plan would keep unemployment below eight percent and create jobs ‘immediately,’ yet the unemployment rate remains unacceptably high at 9.9 percent, millions Americans have lost their jobs since the ‘stimulus’ was enacted, and one out of 10 remain out of work," Boehner said.