President-elect Obama seeks to be a job creator. He's pushing for an economic stimulus package that would protect existing jobs, at a minimum, while stimulating the creation of good-paying jobs for middle-class families.

Obama and his team warned over the weekend that unless immediate investments are made to protect and create jobs, unemployment could jump to 9 percent in short order. One can only wonder, then, if a return of double-digit jobless rates is just around the corner.

Gov. Paterson seeks to be a job killer. His proposed $6 billion in tax hikes on every day consumer products and services will destroy the jobs of hundreds of thousands of New York families. It will cost these families their health care. And it will significantly drive up the cost of living for them and all New Yorkers.

All this will happen at a time when families are struggling to hang onto their jobs, pay their bills and save their homes.

Former NY state economist Stephen Kagann projects that for every $100 million in new taxes imposed during a recession, 11,400 non-government jobs will be lost.

So $6 billion in tax and fee hikes would cost 600,000 New Yorkers their jobs. That's 600,000 more New Yorkers out of work in the middle of a recession.

The Assembly Republican Ways and Means Committee estimates that these 600,000 lost jobs coupled with the 180,000 jobs the Paterson administration already estimates will be lost in 2009 means that 1 in 10 New Yorkers can expect to lose their jobs if the governor’s budget passes.

Once again, Gov. Paterson is delivering a jarring upper cut to President-elect Obama's economic recovery goals. Worse, he's delivering a sucker punch to already hurting New York families. We offer the benefit of the doubt that the governor isn't trying to kill jobs, but that will indeed be the very real outcome of the budget agenda he is pursuing.

It's one thing to undermine the agenda of the soon-to-be president from your own political party. It's a far more grave thing to undercut the hard-working families you serve. All for the cause of getting out of a political jam -- a budget deficit that government created by spending beyond its means for years.

So, once again, the middle-class family is being asked to pay for the sins of its government. And in this case, 600,000 New Yorkers stand to pay for these sins with their jobs.

A harsh blow to hard-working New York families in such harsh economic times.