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Robert Gibbs: Republicans are Lying About Stimulus

(CBS)
While he was careful not to actually utter the word "lie" in his press briefing today, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs left little doubt about the point he was trying to make when asked about claims by many Republicans that the administration-backed economic stimulus package has not created any jobs.

Numerous objective observers have calculated that the legislation (which is now expected to ultimately cost $862 billion) has saved or created at least 1.6 million jobs. Republican governors Charlie Crist and Arnold Schwarzenegger have said it created jobs in their state.

Here's what a reporter asked Gibbs: "Do you believe that Republicans here in Washington are purposefully lying about the stimulus?"

"I don't actually believe that they believe their own statements," responded the press secretary.

"I mean, again, I used the example last week of [Republican Whip Rep.] Eric Cantor said -- Eric Cantor said that it has created no jobs, but when it came time to apply for high-speed rail funds, he said it would create jobs," continued Gibbs. "Now, speaking of reconciliation, I don't have the slightest idea how one reconciles what one says in Washington and what one says in their district when they seem to be in such contradiction."

"You watch Republicans continue to sort of trip over themselves to both put out a statement for -- on why this hasn't worked, at the same time hoping desperately that someone will read their letter for money to come to their district so it will add to what's working already there as part of the Recovery Act," he added.

In a statement tied to the stimulus package's one-year anniversary, House Republican leader John Boehner said the bill was "poorly conceived and badly executed" and has left Americans wondering why there aren't more available jobs.

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