Hoyer: Another stimulus may be needed

One of President Barack Obama‘s top allies in Congress said Tuesday that lawmakers must be open to seeking a second economic stimulus package to fight a stubborn recession and create jobs.

"I think we need to be open to whether or not we need additional action," said House Democratic Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, who underlined it was too soon to fully assess the 787-billion-dollar stimulus approved in February.

Some Democrats have hinted they may favor a second stimulus measure, drawing sharp attacks from Republicans that the giant package approved months ago had demonstrably failed to create or save jobs and turn the US economy around.

"I think it’s certainly too early right now… to say, you know, it’s not working. In fact, we believe it is working," said Hoyer.

Senate Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid seemed less convinced, saying it was too soon to judge the first stimulus but underlining: "As far as I’m concerned, there’s no showing to me that another stimulus is needed."

About 10 percent of the earlier package had been spent, with 90 percent more to come, Reid said, telling reporters: "The crops have been planted, the shoots are now appearing above the ground.

"It’s going to move more quickly now," said the Nevada senator.

A top economic adviser to Obama, Laura Tyson, said in Singapore that the United States may need a second stimulus package focused on infrastructure projects to put the world’s richest economy firmly on the path to recovery.

Tyson, speaking at the Nomura Asia Equity Forum in Singapore, said it was too early to quantify the size of a second package, adding that "we’ll have a much better idea towards the end of the year."

Her comments came after Obama said last month that US unemployment would likely climb above 10 percent but that a new injection of government money was "not yet" needed.

However, Tyson said her remarks represented her own views and not the administration’s official position.

Republicans said continued job losses proved that the February stimulus, which most of them opposed, had failed and poured scorn on the notion of another package.

"There’s no education in the second kick of a mule. Now, why in the world there would be any conclusion reached after looking at the results of the first stimulus that the way to deal with that is to pass yet another one is mind-boggling," Senate Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters.

"I think a second stimulus is an even worse idea than the first stimulus, which has been demonstrably proven to have failed."

Since the recession began in December 2007, the world’s biggest economy has lost 6.5 million jobs and the jobless rate has risen 4.6 percentage points.


  1. bryan mcclellan

    News flash: Steny and Laura are making bedroom eyes at more of your disposable income, but Harry Balls Reid says pubescence is right around the corner with all the curly little sprouts about to emerge.

    Who do we believe?

    Guess what Dear fellow taxpayers?

    The first package, er stimulus, er, well lets just call it an economic Dildo just doesn’t seem to be hitting the growth/G-spot and we will have to fork over more funds to Wall street and the Banks to see if some turgidity can be gained to point our way out of this mess.

    No word about lubrication at this time. Just lay back, bend over, or we’ll do it for you.

  2. Janice

    I’m still waiting for a logical explanation of why giving a fixed amount – say $10 to 15k – to each American household in this country is not a good idea. The expectation would be that the money is used to pay down bills, and I’m guessing we would see somewhere around 80% compliance with this. If it’s not done, then the stimulus money is taxed as income, or some other penalty for non-conforming. The money would still go to the big financial institutions, but the added benefit would be that individual households would have much of their debt paid down, freeing up more disposable income to put back into the economy. Ok, that’s my idea.

  3. oceanika

    I wonder if we can recover that TARP money. Now wouldn’t be too soon. They don’t seem to be putting it to the intended purpose, and they don’t seem too grateful either. Well, maybe a little – those seven
    figure bonuses do come in handy.

    The former presidential administration wasn’t against re-distributing the national wealth to his base.

    Shame on the Rs and Ds in congress for getting suckered into supporting it. Didn’t they learn anything from the last time GWB cried wolf (i.e. WMD) and pissed our national wealth down that rathole called IRAQ

    Seriously, if we could undo TARP we wouldn’t need so much K-Y.

  4. bogofree

    When Bear Sterns went south I liquidated many mutual fund positions and flush with cash took advantage of the Obama bounce. Trouble is there was no bounce! The debt is staggering and the approach is just to toss more and more money hoping that eventually a turn around will happen. So much for that.

    The first signal was back last year with the first bailout bill that was passed in a few days. Both parties saw the light and were scurrying around like cockroaches knowing that their sticky fingers were in this mess. Thanks to our wonderful legislative watchdogs keeping tabs on the regulators.

    I go by what HST said about getting one armed economist since they were always saying “on the other hand” when dispensing their economic wisdom.

    Eventually the economic ship will right itself and President Obama or President Palin can take credit neither deserve nor their political party.