GOP 2012 Candidates Blame Obama for National Unemployment Not Going Down
Around the State
The numbers released on Friday showed that 8.9 percent of adult men, 8 percent of adult women and 25.4 percent of teenagers remained out of work. Asian-Americans are doing better than other racial groups in the job market with only 7.1 percent of them unemployed. This compares to 8 percent of whites out of work, 11.3 percent of Hispanics and 16.7 percent of blacks.
Federal officials noted on Friday that the employment numbers have changed little since April.
“Average job growth over the last four months has been markedly lower than during the first four months of the year. In August, employment changed little in most major industries,” noted Keith Hall, the commissioner of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, on Friday. “Health care added 30,000 jobs over the month, with most of the gains occurring in ambulatory health care services and in hospitals. In professional and business services, employment in computer systems design and related services increased by 8,000. Mining employment continued to trend up.
“In the information sector, employment fell by 48,000 over the month, largely reflecting a strike by 45,000 telecommunications workers,” continued Hall. "Manufacturing employment was essentially unchanged in August. For the past four months, manufacturing has added an average of 14,000 jobs per month, compared with an average of 35,000 per month for the first four months of the year.
"Local government employment continued to trend down in August,” added Hall. “State government employment was little changed, despite the return of an estimated 22,000 Minnesota state employees following a partial government shutdown in July.”
U.S. Labor Secretary Hilda Solis spoke on behalf of the Obama administration on the jobless numbers on Friday.
"The private sector added 17,000 jobs in August, but those gains were offset by the loss of 17,000 government jobs. Total nonfarm unemployment, therefore, was unchanged last month. The unemployment rate also remained unchanged at 9.1 percent,” noted Solis. “Consumer confidence dropped sharply last month as Congress took the nation to the brink of default. We knew that this legislative gridlock was going to have repercussions, and the hiring slowdown reflected in today's report shows the real-life consequences that political gamesmanship has on business decisions and workers' lives. These numbers are a stark reminder that actions -- and inaction -- on Capitol Hill have consequences.”
Solis pointed to the speech Obama is scheduled to give on Thursday on employment.
"Next Thursday, President Obama will outline a bipartisan plan to create jobs and generate growth that pulls the best ideas from both political parties. If Congress is serious about job creation, the package will pass,” said Solis. “The time for partisan bickering is over. The American people are fed up. Concerned citizens need to get engaged in this process, contact their leaders in Congress and hold them accountable.”
Responding to the report, the field of Republican presidential candidates slammed Obama’s record on jobs and the economy
“President Obama’s job-killing polices continue to wreak havoc on the American economy,” said Gov. Rick Perry of Texas, who is leading the Republican field in most recent national polls. “The poor national jobs picture stands in stark contrast to Texas’ pro-jobs, limited government policies which helped make us the top job-producing state in the nation. Our country cannot afford four more years of economic misery, and I will continue to travel the country talking about ways to get America working again.”
“Today’s disappointing unemployment report is further proof that President Obama has failed," said former Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts. “President Obama oversaw an economy that created zero jobs last month and that is unacceptable. In order to change the direction of this country, we need to change presidents. Americans need a conservative businessman to get this economy moving again, not career politicians. That is why I am running. Next week, I will lay out my specific plan to put America back to work.”
Congresswoman Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, who won the Iowa Republican straw poll in August, called out the president on jobs.
"Mr. President -- we gave you $2.4 trillion in new spending and the American people got nothing in return,” said Bachmann. “Today's jobs report showing that the economy created no jobs in the last month and unemployment at 9.1 percent is further evidence that President Obama's failed economic policies are not working and have completely stalled job growth. After spending three days last month on a bus tour focusing on jobs, today's economic report shows that the nation's economy is sitting at a huge stop sign. Before his vacation, the president gave us a speech about a jobs speech; the American people don't need speeches, they need jobs.
"It's time for a comprehensive restructuring of how Washington spends taxpayers' dollars by controlling spending and encouraging pro-growth economic policies,” added Bachmann. “Mr. President -- it's time to stop digging our country further into debt; it's time to build a solid foundation for sustainable economic growth to restore certainty for the American people and the markets."
Former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania also looked to blame the president for the nation’s continuing economic woes.
“This morning's jobs report is another sad sign that President Obama's economic policies would need to improve dramatically to even be described as incompetent,” said Santorum. “For three years, in speech after speech, the president has claimed to be focused on the American worker, but month after month and report after report shows the opposite. So, either the president's economic policies are killing this economy or his lack of leadership -- either way, President Obama is to blame. Employers need certainty and freedom to expand and that's what my jobs plan would do."
Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, who worked in the Obama administration as ambassador to China, took aim at his former boss on Friday.
“Two days after I offered a plan with serious solutions that would create jobs and get our economy going, we learn of yet another month with zero job growth,” said Huntsman. “There is no clearer sign that the president has failed and the theatrics around his far-too-late jobs speech demonstrate that he has no real plan to change course. In a country with 307 million people, zero job growth is unfathomable. It's time for America to compete again and it's time for a new president.”
Reach Kevin Derby at email@example.com or at (850) 727-0859.