The White House is backing away from a rosy job forecast it issued just nine days ago.
President Bush's annual "Economic Report of the President" forecast that 2.6 million jobs will be created by the end of this year.
However, three Bush Cabinet secretaries declined to repeat that forecast during a bus tour in Washington state. And Press Secretary Scott McClellan now says the projection is based on economic data that's three months old.
Asked repeatedly if the White House stands by the forecast, McClellan refused to say. He declared, "The president is not a statistician."
Democrats have denounced the forecast as a fantasy, noting the economy's produced fewer than 400,000 jobs over the last five months.