Report: Recovery Act Has Lifted Millions Above Poverty Line

December 18, 2009 5:51 pm ET — Walid Zafar

A report published yesterday by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities shows that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 is keeping millions out of poverty.  The findings fly in the face of statements made by Republican lawmakers, both at the state and federal level, who have almost from day one argued that the stimulus is an utter failure.

In addition to keeping more than 6 million Americans out of poverty in 2009, ARRA is reducing the severity of poverty for 33 million additional Americans who are poor by lifting their incomes, typically by more than $700. Due to data limitations, these figures are conservative and underestimate the number of people that the seven ARRA provisions examined here have helped in 2009.

Here are just a few of the Republicans who continue their misguided assault on the ARRA, despite the fact that the legislation has benefitted thousands of their constituents.

Rep. Tom Price, one of the Administration's most vocal opponents and Chairman of the Republican Study Committee:

That's why, working with my Republican colleagues, I have introduced a pair of measures that would pull the plug on the ill-fated stimulus and put into action real incentives for economic growth.

244,000 Georgians have been lifted above the poverty line.

Marco Rubio, former Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, currently in a hotly contested primary race against Gov. Charlie Crist for Senator:

Growing government through the stimulus and other liberal initiatives simply cannot replace or compete with the private sector's limitless potential to create lasting jobs and prosperity

425,000 Floridians have been lifted above the poverty line.

Mitch McConnell, Senate Minority Leader:

"We have no assurance it will create jobs or revive the economy," he said. "The only thing we know for sure is that it increases our debt and locks in bigger and bigger interest payments every year. In short, we're taking an enormous risk with other people's money."

102,000 Kentuckians have been lifted above the poverty line.

John Boehner, House Minority Leader:

Washington Democrats staked their credibility on a nearly trillion-dollar 'stimulus' that was supposed to be about putting people back to work, but has instead produced countless examples of wasteful government spending while more than three million more Americans have lost their jobs. 

204,000 Ohioans have been lifted above the poverty line.

Rep. Todd Tiahrt, who is running for Senate:

44,000 Kansans have been lifted above the poverty line.