President Barack Obama marked the five-year anniversary of a controversial economic stimulus plan by releasing a report on saying that government spending averted a second Great Depression, setting off a new round of partisan debate about the decision.
Obama had been in office only a month when he signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, a $787 billion stimulus that Democratic majorities in both the Senate and House of Representatives passed over the objections of Republicans.
Many Americans remain doubtful about how helpful the stimulus was for an economy that still struggles to recover from a deep recession that took hold in 2008.
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The White House, eager to lay to rest those doubts, issued a five-year report on Monday that said the stimulus generated an average of 1.6 million jobs a year for four years through the end of 2012.