Too Many Americans Looking for Work
President Barack Obama pointed out Friday that there are still too many Americans looking for work, in reaction to the job numbers that came out for July. Obama used this as his rallying call to; renew expiring tax cuts for U.S. households from coast to coast.
Presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney, never wanting to miss the opportunity to bash the president, speaking in the swing state of Nevada the same day, flaunted a report that shows the economy added just 163,000 jobs in July in an attempt to decry the president’s floundering economic policies.
“These numbers are not just statistics,” Romney said. “These are real people, really suffering, having hard times.”
The July report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics is at a heightened level of political importance in an election in which the economy and jobs are paramount. While job creation in July moved forward by some estimates, the unemployment climbed to 8.3 percent, a hard statistic for the Obama administration to sweep under the carpet, try as they may.
Highlighting Positive Jobs Figures
Obama tried to highlight the more positive jobs figures in the July report by arguing his administration has been responsible for the creation of 4.5 million jobs since January of 2009.
“But let’s acknowledge: we’ve still got too many folks out there who are looking for work,” he said at the White House. “We’ve got more work to do on their behalf,” said Obama.
The jobs numbers demonstrate what businesses are going through as far as employment is concerned. Bad numbers can add fuel to the flames and cause consumers to react by curtailing their spending, and erode the confidence of businesses as they look towards future sales. Good estimates open consumers’ wallets, and cause businesses to reinvest in growth.
July’s job figures were lack luster at best and “still relatively small by historical standards,” said Kathy Bostjancic, director of macroeconomic analysis for The Conference Board, but “it might help spark somewhat higher consumer optimism and spending.”
Biggest Corporate Challenge
“That in turn, could lift growth moderately higher” in the third quarter, she said.
“However, lackluster demand remains the biggest corporate challenge in the second half of 2012. Without a large improvement in confidence and spending, job gains are unlikely to gather steam.”
Obama’s attempts thus far to push Republicans to back his attempts to extend Bush-era tax cuts on income up to $250,000 have failed thus far.
“The last thing that we should be doing is asking middle-class families who are still struggling to recover from this recession to pay more in taxes,” he said at the campaign-style event in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, where the bulk of White House staff work. “Rebuilding a strong economy begins with rebuilding our middle class.”
Taking An All Or Nothing Approach
Republicans as usual are taking an all or nothing approach and are pushing to extend all of the Bush-era tax cuts while warning that raising taxes on the richest Americans will stunt job growth. So far they continue to reject the president’s proposal, and once again the American people are caught in the center of the vicious circle of partisan politics.