President Obama’s economic stimulus plan is in trouble

Dear MoveOn member,President Obama’s economic stimulus plan is in trouble. Conservative talking points are dominating the media’s coverage and there’s lots of misinformation around. Here are a few things you may not have heard about it:

1) This is a very, very good bill. As The Nation writes, “If enacted, the economic recovery plan will be one of the biggest and boldest pieces of progressive legislation in the past forty years.”1

Here are some facts about what the bill really does:

  • Creates or saves 3 million to 4 million jobs in the next two years.2
  • Averts “literally hundreds of thousands of teacher layoffs”—and doubles funding for the Department of Education.3
  • Creates 500,000 green jobs and doubles our clean energy production.4
  • Immediately helps unemployed folks get affordable health insurance.5

Some folks are arguing that it should be bigger, and they’re probably right, but this is the best down payment on economic recovery we have seen, and it needs to be passed.
2) The stuff that’s being singled out for criticism amounts to a tiny fraction of the bill—like anti-smoking programs that make up less than one-ten-thousandth of the spending.6 They would have you believe this is the centerpiece of the bill. It is not. This kind of nit-picking is pure politics.

3) If it doesn’t pass, we’re in deep trouble. Even John McCain’s economic adviser estimates that without the stimulus, unemployment would top 11% by 2010, the highest level since the Great Depression.7

We all urgently need to get these facts out before the public. Can you write a letter to the editor of your local paper about how the stimulus will affect real people? Our tool makes writing a letter really easy. Click here to get started: week alone, 100,000 people lost their jobs in this country.8 So we need to make sure the Senate takes action quickly. Nearly 200 economists from across the political spectrum wrote to Congress, agreeing:

“We do not have the luxury of a lengthy debate over the best course of action. This legislation may not be enough to solve all the economy’s problems, but it is urgently needed and an important step in the right direction.”9

But with so much rhetoric and demagoguery surrounding the bill, it won’t pass unless we can get the real facts out to a wide audience. And letters to the editor by local MoveOn members are one of the best ways to set the record straight.Our tool makes it super easy. We’ll provide you with talking points to use, some tips on writing your letter, and an easy way to send it in to any newspaper in your area.
You can start writing your letter to the editor by clicking here:

Thanks for all you do.

–Noah, Laura, Patrick S., Anna and the rest of the team


1. “The Right is Winning Today,” The Nation, February 3, 2009

2. “Senate OKs tax break for new-car buyers,” Boston Globe, February 4, 2009

3. “Stimulus Plan Would Provide Flood of Aid to Education,” New York Times, January 27, 2009

4. “American Recovery and Reinvestment Act,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi, January 28, 2009

5. “Relief Seen for Jobless and State in Health Care Plan,” New York Times, January 27, 2009.

6. “What GOP Leaders deem wasteful in Senate stimulus bill,” CNN, February 3, 2009

7. “The Economic Impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act,”, January 21, 2009

8. “Job cuts exceed 100,000 for the week,” CNN, February 2, 2009

9. “Letter to Congress: Economist Across the Spectrum Endorse Stimulus Package”, Center for American Progress Action Fund, January 27, 2009

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