President Barack Obama’s proposed $50 billion transportation spending program would boost jobs in the construction, manufacturing and retail industries and help bolster a struggling economy, a new administration report says.
The study by the Treasury Department and White House Council of Economic Advisers said that about 90 percent of the new jobs in those three segments of the economy would fall in middle-class range. The construction industry, where unemployment exceeds 17 percent, would benefit the most with 61 percent of the jobs created. The unemployment rate is 9.6 percent for the nation as a whole.
Obama is under pressure to strengthen the recovery with the approach of the Nov. 2 congressional elections that will determine control of Congress and influence his agenda for the second half of his presidency. Republicans would need a net gain of 39 House seats and 10 Senate seats to take control.