Republicans on Thursday continued to remain unsatisfied with high unemployment numbers, even though the jobless rate dropped below 10 percent in January.
GOP leaders blamed continued job losses on Obama administration policies after the latest jobs report was released Friday. The Labor department report showed the unemployment rate dipped below 10 percent to 9.7 percent while the economy shed another 20,000 jobs.
"Washington Democrats promised that the trillion-dollar ‘stimulus’ would create jobs ‘immediately’, keep the unemployment rate from going above eight percent and that 90 percent of the jobs created would be private-sector jobs," House Republican Leader John Boehner (Ohio) said in a statement. "None of that has occurred, and the Obama Administration’s job-killing policies are only making matters worse."
Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele added that "Congressional Democrats that choose to join President Obama in doubling down on his costly plans will face the harsh reality of being out of a job in November."
Republicans have hit Democrats on flagging job numbers for months, helping them win gubernatorial races in Virginia and New Jersey and the Massachusetts special Senate election.
Though Steele and Boehner both criticized the jobs report, they both appeared to disagree on job losses since the stimulus.
Boehner said there have been 3.3 million jobs lost since the federal stimulus package was signed into law but Steele said the economy lost 2.8 million jobs.
Regardless, the White House pointed to signs of recovery in the January jobs report. Unemployment fell below 10 percent for the first time in two months and job losses are lower than the hundres of thousands the economy was shedding earlier in 2009.
Still, Christina Romer, chairwoman of the Council of Economic Advisers said there still could be bumps in the road.
"There will likely be bumps in the road ahead," Romer wrote in a post on the White House blog. "The monthly employment and unemployment numbers are volatile and subject to substantial revision."