Published for The Washington Post, June 12th, 2012

“It’s very clear that private sector jobs are doing just fine.”Sound familiar? These words are not President Obama’s. They were spoken six months ago by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. While pushing a Democratic proposal to spend another $35 billion we don’t have to help states hire more public workers, Reid declared: “It’s very clear that private-sector jobs have been doing just fine; it’s the public-sector jobs where we’ve lost huge numbers.” At last week’s news conference, Obama simply repeated the point Reid made last October.

Jared Bernstein, a former Obama economic adviser, said the president’s gaffe won’t do lasting damage “because that’s not the way he sees it.” But as Reid’s comment demonstrates, that is precisely how Obama and Democratic leaders on Capitol Hill see it. They’ve been saying for months that the private sector is doing fine and that the solution to our unemployment problems is to spend even more taxpayer money to hire more government workers.

Full post here

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