Republicans said Friday that while the government's jobs and unemployment report for October included some good news, it wasn't good enough to stop them from pushing through dozens of jobs bills in 2015 that Democrats have blocked for the last several years.
"While it's welcome news that more people found work last month, wages remain stubbornly flat while costs continue to rise, squeezing middle class families and putting the American Dream further out of reach," House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said.
House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Friday that job creation still isn't on pace to ensure millions of people can work, and said Republicans will push several jobs bills through Congress next year. Credit: Getty Images
“The House has acted on many common-sense, bipartisan jobs bills only to see them stalled in the Democratic-led Senate," he added. Those days are over. January will bring the opportunity to start making a real difference in the lives of struggling families."
Boehner was reacting to a report from the Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, which said the economy added 214,000 jobs in October, and that the unemployment rate fell to 5.8 percent.
October is the ninth consecutive month of job gains above 200,000. Still, Republicans have noted that the multi-year recovery has yet to see any blockbuster months of job growth normally seen when recovering from a recession. They've also noted that the labor force participation rate is still near historic lows, a sign that the unemployment rate has fallen largely because millions of people have stopped looking for work.
"Despite incremental job gains, we're still nowhere close to where we need to be in this country," Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus said. "As today's report underscores, too many Americans are unemployed."
"Under Democrat policies, millions have become so discouraged they have given up looking for work altogether; we too easily forget about them because they are not represented in the headline unemployment number," he said.
Earlier this week, Boehner and soon-to-be Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said they want the GOP Congress to focus on jobs when Republicans take over the Senate. That means repealing and whittling away at Obamacare, reducing the national debt, pursuing tax reform and working on trade agreements.
The GOP is also expected to keep up their efforts to pull back on onerous federal regulations that stifle job creation. Later this month, the GOP House will pass three bills aimed at bringing more transparency to the way the Environmental Protection Agency makes decisions about environmental regulations.
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) told TheBlaze Thursday that he wants Congress to quickly pass a bill authorizing construction of the northern part of the Keystone XL pipeline. The Obama administration has long delayed a deicsion on that project, which would move oil from Canada to refineries on the Gulf Coast.