Photo via Shutterstock
Photo via Shutterstock

The economic boom was spurred by both the 171 million stimulus checks and child tax credits, which were a part of Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan to help Americans recover from the pandemic.


Need to Know

  • Michigan added nearly 40,000 jobs in 2021, and the state’s unemployment rate fell dramatically.
  • Economists and policy experts attribute the economic boom, in part, to President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan.
  • Michigan will also get a boost from Biden’s new infrastructure law, which will invest more than $10 billion in the state to improve roads, highways, bridges, public transit, water infrastructure, and expand access to rural broadband.

MICHIGAN–More than six in 10 Michiganders believe the state’s job market is either “very” or “somewhat” strong, according to a new survey of Michigan voters.

Conversely, only 28% of respondents said the job market in Michigan was not strong at all. 

“Respondents overwhelmingly see the jobs outlook in Michigan as ‘strong,’ an encouraging sign after nearly two years of a global pandemic,” said Lonnie Scott, executive director of Progress Michigan.

The finding is just the latest piece of evidence highlighting a robust economic recovery in the state. Michigan added nearly 40,000 jobs in 2021, according to data from the Bureau for Labor Statistics. The state’s unemployment rate also fell dramatically from 8.2% in Dec of 2020 to 5.6% in Dec. of 2021. 

Not everything has been rosy, to be sure. The continued menace of the coronavirus pandemic turned supply chains and the labor force upside down, which coupled with corporate greed, led to a steep rise in costs for Michiganders. 

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Inflation is certainly one part of the economic story, but focusing only on price increases risks obscuring the bigger picture: Michigan experienced strong economic growth in 2021, mirroring the record-breaking rise in America’s gross domestic product (GDP). The US GDP increased by 5.7% last year, the fastest pace since 1984, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis

Economists and policy experts attribute the economic boom, in part, to President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan, which delivered 171 million stimulus checks to Americans and gave most Michigan parents $3,000 to $3,600 for each child under the age of 18. The legislative package that passed with zero support from Republicans also saved tens of thousands of Michiganders hundreds of dollars on healthcare expenses. 

“Because of the American Rescue Plan and other investments, the bottom 50 percent of households now have more than $3 trillion in wealth—that’s up nearly 20 percent from early 2021, and up 63 percent from pre-pandemic levels,” Mike Konczal and Emily DiVito of the Roosevelt Institute, a liberal thinktank, wrote

Biden’s law–which did not raise taxes on anyone–also sent more than $6 billion to Michigan’s state government–which, under Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s leadership–has used the funds to cut taxes for small businesses, invest in affordable housing, strengthen local communities, and expand access to clean water in the state, among other things.

Biden directly linked the strong GDP numbers to his policies and once again reinforced his desire to dramatically increase American manufacturing.  

“This is no accident. My economic strategy is creating good jobs for Americans, rebuilding our manufacturing, and strengthening our supply chains here at home to help make our companies more competitive,” Biden said in a statement. “Companies are investing in new manufacturing lines and factories here in the United States, with recent announcements of Intel in Ohio and GM in Michigan. We’re making the future in America again.”

GM announced late last month that it would invest $7 billion in four manufacturing facilities in Lansing and Orion Township, making Michigan the “hub” of electric vehicle development and manufacturing. The company claims the move will create 4,000 jobs and retain 1,000 others and economists expect the ripple effect will also create thousands more jobs. How 2022 turns out remains to be seen, but Michigan will continue to get a boost from Biden’s efforts. That includes his infrastructure law, which will invest more than $10 billion in the state to improve roads, highways, bridges, public transit, water infrastructure, and expand access to rural broadband in Michigan.

The poll of 754 Michigan voters was conducted on Jan. 28 and Jan. 29 by Public Policy Polling on behalf of Progress Michigan. The margin of error is +/- 3.6%.