There are 3,130 political units in the U.S.; counties or their rough equivalent.
Today’s jobs report might best be viewed both in the context of numbers large and small. 88,000 new jobs in March, represents an average of 28 new jobs in each county in the U.S., 28! On the other hand the number of people who have exited the work force is reported at 663,000; 211 per county; a net loss of 183 jobs per county. Oh no, wait good news; the ‘revisions for January and February represent another 18 jobs per county.
For every new job created 7.5 people gave up. Financial guru Jim Cramer opines that this new employment condition is the nature of our economy for the foreseeable future; the ‘new normal’, if you will.
Despite the fact that 89,967,000 are not represented in the labor force unemployment according to the Department of Labor dropped slightly. Gallop’s un/underemployed number is increasing, now approaching 18%.
Estimates called for 200,000 new jobs in March; just a small margin of error, 227%.
The administration will, no doubt, blame the jobs numbers on the Sequester and Republican intransigence. Democrats facing 2014 reelection bids may support the administration’s spin in public but they won’t buy it in private. These numbers will scare them, and they should. Blaming Bush is going to be very hard to do six years into the current administration.
Republicans, on the other hand, need to get their messaging straight and apply it consistently and at every turn. Deficits and debt, deficits and debt! Entitlement reform and pro growth tax policy. Entitlement reform and pro growth tax policy. Cut wasteful and unproductive spending, cut wasteful and unproductive spending.
The President is getting ready to feed this beast with a budget proposal that will, as have his other budgets, promote deficit spending and tax increases for as far as the eye can see. There will no doubt be just enough cuts here and there in his budget to provide the President with talking points. The Republican response should be to point out that that’s all they are; talking points. They need to point out that the President is more concerned with fodder for speechifying than he is in doing what needs to be done to promote economic growth and the jobs that occur only when economic growth is the case.
To minority communities Republicans need to speak to how they are always hurt the worst and that the President, despite rhetoric to the contrary, has done nothing for them. To the young, they need to get used to living in their parent’s basement. To the Middle Class get ready for more job losses because that is the only thing that can happen under these economic policies; or, more accurately the absence of economic policy as we normally understand it.
By the time 2014 gets here, absent a significant change in the President’s policies it could be essentially a single issue campaign; the economy. Begin the campaign now! The President has!