Election Connection Commentary:Presidential candidates discuss March jobs report
During the month of March, there were 120,000 jobs created in the United States, half of the 240,000 that were created in February.
According to a CNN article, the unemployment rate also fell to 8.2 percent during March. Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said the rate declined because numerous workers left their jobs.
“Millions of Americans are paying a high price for President Obama’s economic policies, and more and more people are growing so discouraged that they are dropping out of the labor force altogether,” he said in the same article.
Freshman music performance major Jack Barry said he agreed with Romney, and the increase in jobs is not nearly enough to get the U.S. economy back on track.
“This is not a positive sign,” he said. “This is half the pace it has been growing for the last few months. Economists predicted around 210,000 jobs to be created in March. Employment is the lowest since January 2009. But it dropped from 8.3 to 8.2 because many people are no longer looking for jobs, not because there is a net gain of employment in the country.”
President Barack Obama defended the jobs report on the campaign trail this week. Obamasaid the increase in jobs is a positive sign, but there is still work to be done.
“We welcome today’s news that our businesses created another 121,000 jobs last month, and the unemployment rate ticked down,” Obama said at the White House Forum on Women and the Economy. “But it’s clear to every American that there will still be ups and downs along the way, and that we’ve got a lot more work to do.”
U.S. House Speaker John Boehner supported Romney on Friday, and said the Republicans have a plan they want to put in place with a Republican president that would increase the number of jobs.
“Unfortunately, the president is refusing to get serious about addressing our fiscal and economic challenges,” Boehner said in a different CNN article. “Republicans have a jobs plan, and a budget that cuts spending, fixes our tax code, addresses excessive regulations, and expands American energy production.”
Unemployment is roughly the same as it was in January 2009, when Obama took office, and is down 1.8 percent from where it was at its peak in October 2009.
“I know some will say the economy’s getting better,” Romney said this week to U.S. News. “Of course, every recession ends and people come back to work. But the rate of recovery under this president, under his recovery, if you will, has been the most tepid.”