Richmond, VA - Tim Kaine released the following statement on the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ [BLS] monthly report showing that the U.S. unemployment rate dropped from 8.1% to 7.8% in September. The BLS says the U.S. economy added 114,000 jobs in September, making it the 31st consecutive month of private sector job growth. The BLS also revised July job gains from 141,000 to 181,000 and August job gains upward from 96,000 to 142,000.
"Steady private sector job creation for 31 straight months and a significant drop in the unemployment rate is encouraging news for Virginia families and businesses that continue to be the engines of our economic recovery, but there’s more to be done. After facing the worst economic collapse in 70 years, this consistent economic growth demonstrates that if we can fix the challenges our nation faces, our workers and businesses are poised to lead the way in a global economy. As I’ve traveled across the Commonwealth, business owners tell me that gridlock in Washington over how to solve our fiscal challenges continues to be the single biggest impediment to hiring new workers and expanding their businesses.
“The threat of sequestration cuts is the most pressing issue, which is why I’ve laid out a specific, bipartisan approach to avoid these harmful across the board cuts. For months I have called on Congress to find a compromise on the Bush tax cuts by allowing them to expire for income above $500,000, creating $500 billion in new revenue, and to allow Medicare to negotiate for cheaper drug prices and eliminate subsidies for large oil companies to generate another $264 billion. If we make these three changes, we will avert draconian sequestration cuts while still taking responsible steps to reduce our deficit. Congress is drawing a paycheck -- they owe it to our families and businesses to find a bipartisan solution to these looming cuts that are holding up businesses from making the critical decisions necessary to grow and expand.
"While I have laid out a specific, bipartisan solution, my opponent continues to stand with the Grover Norquist wing of Congress which is intent on blocking compromise. He has refused even $10 in cuts for a dollar in new revenue, a position so extreme that many in his own party reject it. His all-cuts approach would have virtually the same impact on Virginia's economy as the sequestration cuts he labels harmful. Virginia can't afford his all-cuts approach and our nation can't afford another voice for ideology over results in Washington."