Friday, February 25, 2011

Obama Tells Panel U.S. Recovery Harmed

President Barack Obama told the first meeting of his panel of outside economic advisers that the U.S. must deal with stubbornly high unemployment even as the recovery from the recession is well under way.

“The biggest challenge that we’re seeing right now is that unemployment is way too high,” Obama told the 23-member President’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness yesterday. The advisory group, led by General Electric Co. chief executive officer Jeffrey Immelt, replaces the President’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board, which was headed by former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker.

In the month since he delivered his State of the Union address, Obama has sought to make the case that investments in education, infrastructure and innovation will help create more jobs. He reiterated that message yesterday, telling members of the panel, “We’re going to have to up our game in this newly competitive world.”

Obama told the group that he wants them to provide “some concrete deliverables” that will help lower the 9 percent unemployment rate.

Today the president is scheduled to meet at the White House with 14 Democratic governors -- including Deval Patrick of Massachusetts, Martin O’Malley of Maryland and Dan Malloy of Connecticut -- to discuss ways Washington can work with states to help spark job creation, according to a White House statement.

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