Republicans on Friday questioned the validity of the payroll increase in the May jobs report since temporary Census workers were almost wholly responsible for the 431,000 new jobs created.
Out of the 431,000 new jobs, 411,000 of them were temporary Census workers. Private-sector firms only boosted their payrolls by 41,000, lower than most experts expected. The unemployment rate dipped from 9.9 percent in April to 9.7 percent in May.
"I welcome job growth any day, week or month of the year, but the figures released today need to be stamped with 'Buyer Beware,' " Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele said in a statement. "While Democrats will likely cling to the slight uptick reported this month, the reality is that these numbers are greatly inflated by hundreds of thousands of government census jobs."
Republicans saw the deflated jobs numbers as an indictment of Democratic policies.
"Let me be clear — during challenging times, a job is a job," House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said in a statement. "Yet government jobs that are paid for by taxing small-business people and borrowing from the Chinese are not signs of a healthy economic recovery."
House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) specifically blamed the federal stimulus package, which Democrats have credited for keeping the economy from going under at the height of the crisis.
"The trillion-dollar ‘stimulus,’ signed into law by President Obama with promises that it would keep unemployment below 8 percent and that 90 percent of the jobs it created would be in the private sector, has fallen well short," he said. "Out-of-touch Washington Democrats have continued their out-of-control spending spree despite economists’ pleas to cut government spending now to help jumpstart small-business job growth."