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Entries in Unemployment Rate (8)

Friday
Jul062012

Romney: Jobs Numbers a 'Kick in the Gut'

Mario Tama/Getty Images(WOLFEBORO, N.H.) -- Taking an unscheduled break from his week-long vacation in New Hampshire, Mitt Romney told reporters on Friday that a lackluster U.S. job growth report for June was “another kick in the gut to middle class families.”

Romney said a stagnant 8.2 percent unemployment rate was “unacceptably high” and argued the president can’t fix the situation.

“The president doesn’t have a plan, hasn’t proposed any new ideas to get the economy going just the same old ideas of the past that have failed,” said Romney, standing with lawn-mowers and metal garbage cans on shelves behind him in the garage of Bradley’s Hardware in the resort town of Wolfeboro.

“I have a plan,” said Romney, ticking off portions of his 59-point economic plan.  He mentioned proposals to capitalize on energy resources in America, opening new trade agreements and cutting regulations.

But Romney was pressed to respond to conservative critics like the editorial page of the Wall Street Journal, which recently accused Romney of playing it too safe and not offering his own specific solutions to the fix economy.

“I don’t say much to critics,” Romney responded.  “I put out 59 steps on how I’d get the economy going and I don’t think I’ve seen any from the president that show what he’s planning on doing.  I’ve laid out my 59 steps take a look at them, I think you’ll find them very specific.”

The appearance at the hardware store was Romney’s first formal press conference since late May, when he took questions from reporters in California.  It came in the middle of a vacation where Romney has spent time with his entire family -- including his five sons, their wives and his 18 grandchildren.

Asked whether it’s hypocritical for him to be vacationing while the economy is still struggling -- being that his own campaign staffers often criticize President Obama’s penchant for golfing -- Romney said he is happy to be able to spend time with his family and wants the same for other Americans.

“You know I’m delighted to be able to take a vacation with my family I think all Americas appreciate the memories they have with their children and their grandchildren I hope more Americans are able to take vacations,” said Romney.  “And if I’m president of the United States I’m going to work very hard to make sure we have good jobs for all Americans who want good jobs and as part of a good job the capacity to take a vacation now and then with their loved ones.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jul062012

White House Says Employment Not Growing Fast Enough

Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Image(WASHINGTON) -- Reacting to Friday morning’s jobs report, the White House said the economy is continuing to heal, but that “much more remains to be done to repair the damage from the financial crisis.”

“It is critical that we continue the policies that build an economy that works for the middle class and makes us stronger and more secure as we dig our way out of the deep hole that was caused by the severe recession,” Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers Alan Krueger said in a written statement.

“There are no quick fixes to the problems we face that were more than a decade in the making. President Obama has proposals to create jobs by ending tax breaks for companies to ship jobs overseas and supporting state and local governments to prevent layoffs and rehire hundreds of thousands of teachers,” he said.

The economy added 80,000 jobs in June -- fewer than expected -- and the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 8.2 percent, the Labor Department announced Friday morning.

The news comes as the president is campaigning in Ohio and Pennsylvania, touting his economic agenda and the comeback of the auto industry.

Krueger emphasized that the economy has added private sector jobs for 28 straight months and highlighted growth in the manufacturing sector, which added 11,000 jobs last month.

“Employment is growing but it is not growing fast enough given the jobs deficit caused by the deep recession,” he said.

As it does every month, the White House noted the unemployment figures can be volatile and that “it is important not to read too much into any one monthly report.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jun012012

White House on Jobs Report: Problems 'Will Not Be Solved Overnight'

Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- In its first reaction to Friday morning’s disappointing jobs report, the White House said the nation is still fighting back from the recession and that the “problems in the job market were long in the making and will not be solved overnight.”

“There is much more work that remains to be done to repair the damage caused by the financial crisis and deep recession that began at the end of 2007,” Alan Krueger, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, wrote in a White House blog.

“Just like last year at this time, our economy is facing serious headwinds, including the crisis in Europe and a spike in gas prices that hit American families’ finances over the past months.  It is critical that we continue the President’s economic policies that are helping us dig our way out of the deep hole that was caused by the severe recession,” Krueger added, pointing to the president’s legislative “to-do list” for Congress to boost the economy, which he will be promoting Friday in Minneapolis.

The economy added just 69,000 jobs last month -- below expectations of 150,000 -- and the unemployment rate ticked up to 8.2 percent, the Labor Department announced Friday morning.  

Krueger points to manufacturing, education and health services, along with transportation and warehousing as examples of areas where employment continues to expand.

As it does every month, the White House stresses that the monthly figures can be “volatile” and that “it is important not to read too much into any one monthly report.”

Meanwhile, Mitt Romney chimed in on the latest jobs report Friday morning, saying the weak numbers are one reason why he's running for president.

"Slowing GDP growth, plunging consumer confidence, an increase in unemployment claims, and now another dismal jobs report all stand as a harsh indictment of the President’s handling of the economy.  It is now clear to everyone that President Obama’s policies have failed to achieve their goals and that the Obama economy is crushing America’s middle class. The President's re-election slogan may be 'forward,' but it seems like we've been moving backward," he said in a statement.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
May042012

Jobs Report: Economy Healing, More to Be Done, White House Says

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- In its first reaction to Friday morning’s April jobs report, the White House says the latest numbers are further evidence the economy is continuing to heal, but that “much more remains to be done to repair the damage caused by the financial crisis and the deep recession.”

“It is critical that we continue the economic policies that are helping us dig our way out of the deep hole that was caused by the severe recession that began at the end of 2007,” Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers Alan Krueger writes in a White House blog.

“President Obama has said that prosperity in America has always come from a strong and growing middle class.  He has made clear that getting back to where we were is not enough. We need to do more, which is why the President has laid out his blueprint for an American economy that is built to last and will continue to urge Congress to act to do more to grow the economy and create jobs,” he writes.

The economy created 115,000 jobs last month, fewer than the roughly 160,000 expected. The unemployment rate dropped slightly from 8.2 percent in March to 8.1 percent in April.

Krueger notes the economy has added private sector jobs for 26 straight months and highlights manufacturing as a “bright spot” that added 16,000 jobs last month. “To continue the revival in manufacturing jobs and output, the President has proposed tax incentives for manufacturers, enhanced training for the workforce, and measures to create manufacturing hubs and encourage the growing trend of insourcing,” he writes.

As they do every month, the White House stresses that the monthly figures can be “volatile” and cautions “not to read too much into any one monthly report.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Apr062012

Jobs Report ‘Further Evidence’ of Recovery, White House Says

Comstock Images/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- In its first reaction to Friday morning’s March jobs report, the White House said the latest figures are “further evidence that the economy is continuing to recover,” but that there’s more work to be done.

“It is critical that we continue to make smart investments that strengthen our economy and lay a foundation for long-term middle class job growth so we can continue to dig our way out of the deep hole that was caused by the severe recession that began at the end of 2007,” Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers Alan Krueger wrote in a White House blog.

The U.S. economy created 120,000 jobs in March and the unemployment rate ticked down to 8.2 percent, the Labor Department announced on Friday.

“Despite adverse shocks that have created headwinds for economic growth, including weak construction investment, the economy has added private sector jobs for 25 straight months, for a total of 4.1 million jobs over that period,” Krueger noted.

As they do every month, the White House stressed “the monthly employment and unemployment figures can be volatile” and that “it is important not to read too much into any one monthly report.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Mar192012

Rick Santorum: Focus on Freedom, Not Unemployment Rate

Jessica McGowan/Getty Images(MOLINE, Ill.) -- During a rally in Moline, Ill., Monday afternoon, just miles away from where he won the Iowa caucuses in January, Rick Santorum suggested that his campaign is focused on preserving freedom, not the economy. This argument is not new for Santorum, but on Monday he said he didn’t “care what the unemployment rate’s going to be,” a point he later attempted to clarify to reporters.

“We need a candidate who’s going to be a fighter for freedom. Who’s going to get up and make that the central theme in this race because it is the central theme in this race. I don’t care what the unemployment rate’s going to be. Doesn’t matter to me. My campaign doesn’t hinge on unemployment rates and growth rates,” said Santorum at the Moline Club. “It’s something more foundational that’s going on. We have one nominee who says he wants to run the economy. What kind of conservative says that the president runs the economy? What conservative says I’m the guy because of my economic experience that can create jobs? I don’t know. We conservatives generally think that government doesn’t create jobs. That what government does is create an atmosphere for jobs to be created in the private sector.”

Santorum was asked by reporters to clarify what he meant when he said he did not care about the unemployment rate.

“As far as my political campaign, of course I care about the unemployment rate, I want the unemployment rate to go down, but I’m saying my candidacy doesn’t hinge on whether the unemployment rate goes up and down, our candidacy’s about something that transcends that; it’s about freedom, it’s not about you know Governor Romney’s idea that he’s going to fix the economy which is something that of course we as Republicans don’t believe that presidents fix the economy, we believe that we try to do things to create an atmosphere for the economy to fix itself,” said Santorum.

In the final push before Tuesday’s Illinois primary, Santorum stressed the importance of the freedom agenda in his campaign. At his first stop of the day, he suggested that the main concern of the 2012 race is not the economy and argued for a strong national defense as well as strong family values.

“The issue in this race is not the economy. The reason the economy is an issue in this race is because the federal government is oppressing its people and taking away your freedom and the economy is suffering as a result,” said Santorum at the Venetian club in Rockford.

He also painted Mitt Romney as the candidate who is “uniquely disqualified” to promote the freedom agenda and argued that he “abandoned freedom” during his time as governor of Massachusetts.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Sep092011

'Super Committee' Convenes to Start Work on Reducing Deficit

Stephen Chernin/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The D.C. lawmakers assigned to cut the nation's deficit convened for the first time Thursday and there was already evidence that their daunting task will be made more arduous by partisan bickering.

Members of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, otherwise known as the "super committee," all seemed to have job creation on their minds with the unemployment rate still sitting at around nine percent.

Massachusetts Democratic Sen. John Kerry summed it up by remarking, "We can’t fix our budget without fixing jobs, and we can’t fix jobs without fixing our budget."

However, the six Republicans and six Democrats were evenly split on the best ways to grow jobs and couldn't decide just how fixing the employment picture will ultimately factor into the plans to slice $1.5 trillion from the budget in 10 years.  Democrats say that some sort of short-term jobs stimulus package was needed to help bring in more future revenue, while Republicans contend that cuts in spending and taxes alone is the sure-fire way to spur job creation.

Republican Congressman Dave Camp of Michigan said, "By reducing the burden the federal debt places on employers, families, and taxpayers, we can help get the country back on track and Americans back to work."

However, Maryland Democratic Congressman Chris Van Hollen countered with, "The quickest, most effective way to reduce the deficit in the short-term is to kick the economy into a higher gear and grow jobs.”

Thursday's proceedings were also constantly interrupted by shouts from a small band of protesters outside the meeting room, who chanted, "What do we want?  Jobs!  When do we need ’em?  NOW!"

The super committee has 76 days to come up with a plan to be delivered to President Obama.  Otherwise, $1.2 trillion in automatic spending cuts will kick in, divided evenly between defense and non-defense spending.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Sep022011

White House on Jobs Report: 'Clearly, Faster Growth Is Needed'

Gary S Chapman/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- In its first reaction to Friday’s jobs report -- in which it was shown that in August, not a single net job was added to employers' payrolls, a first since 1945 -- the White House says that the unemployment rate “remains unacceptably high” and that “clearly, faster growth is needed to replace the jobs lost in the downturn.”

Friday’s worse-than-expected jobs report from the Labor Department showed that the nation’s unemployment rate remains unchanged at 9.1 percent. However, in a White House blog Katharine Abraham, a member of the Council of Economic Advisers, notes that private sector payrolls increased by 17,000 and that "despite a slowdown in economic growth from substantial headwinds experienced throughout the year, the economy has added private sector jobs for 18 straight months, for a total of 2.4 million jobs over that period."

As it does every month, the White House notes that monthly unemployment numbers are “volatile” and that it’s important “not to read too much into any one monthly report.”

Friday’s figures set the stage as the president prepares to outline his jobs proposal before Congress next week. “Next week, the President will lay out a series of additional bipartisan steps that Congress can take immediately to put more money in the paychecks of working and middle class families; to make it easier for small businesses to hire workers; to put construction crews to work rebuilding our nation’s infrastructure; and other measures that will help the economy grow while still reducing our deficit and getting our fiscal house in order,” Abraham writes.

“This number is a real punch in the gut” to the Obama administration, said ABC News White House correspondent Ann Compton, who called the report “deeply discouraging.”

“This kind of stubborn unemployment is exactly what has prompted President Obama to plan for a jobs speech on a big stage. He wants to be standing there at Congress' door when they arrive back, with a tray full of specific tax incentives and jobs projects that would have impact in September and October.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio