Joining the backlash against House Majority leader John Boehner's (R-Ohio) economic speech yesterday, Mark Zandi, Moody's chief economist, said Boehner was "just wrong" to call the $787 billion stimulus spending "a failure."
If there was no stimulus at all, Zandi said, unemployment would be at around 11.5% rather than 9.5%.
"I think if we had not had the stimulus, estimates put forward by the Congressional Budget Office are absolutely right: we'd have 2.5-3 million fewer jobs than we'd have today," he said at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast briefing this morning.
What needs to change are people's expectations, he said. "The stimulus did exactly what it was intended to do. It was intended to end the recession, jump-start the economy, and it did that," said Zandi, who has advised both Obama and John McCain in the past.