March 8th, 2010
12:10 PM ET
5 years ago

Political analyst: Dems need big plunge in jobless rate

Arlington, Virginia (CNN) – For congressional Democrats, the not-at-all-secret password this year is … jobs. They want to convince voters that they are working tirelessly to create them and thus regain some of the political momentum they have lost.

But the employment hole is deep. Can Democrats climb out of it by November?

Electoral odds maker Charlie Cook on Monday gave a grim assessment of their chances.

The unemployment rate, currently 9.7 percent, would have to fall about 1 percentage point by November for Democrats to proclaim "mission accomplished," he said. Cook, who runs the non-partisan Cook Political Report, spoke at the annual policy conference of the National Association for Business Economics, a leading group of professional economy watchers.

Even a continuation of the year-long stock market rally wouldn't help the Democrats much.

"The market could go up substantially and I don't think it's likely to change the outcome," Cook said. "In terms of politics, [voters] are really only aware of unemployment."

The big problem for Democrats: The odds of a noticeable improvement in unemployment are long. Many economists expect the jobless rate to hover near 10 percent through the rest of the year.

In fact, Congressional Budget Office Director Douglas Elmendorf, who spoke at the conference after Cook, said the rate will likely average near 10 percent this year. It will be 2012, he said, before it gets down to about 8 percent.


Filed under: 2010 • Democrats • Economy • Jobs
soundoff (68 Responses)
  1. diridi

    Once Health care bill passes, I vote for Democrats...for ever...ok

    March 8, 2010 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  2. Angie in PA

    But the very same people who brought us the Depression, and the High unemployment, and the Bailout to Wall st. REFUSE TO WORK WITH CONGRESS! NO NO NO That is their only solution to their mess they created! and yet people are ready to put THEM BACK IN POWER! Maybe if they would stop filabustering everything and get off their partisan high horse then we could clean up the mess YES REPUBLICANS IM TALKING ABOUT YOU!!!

    March 8, 2010 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  3. a health economist

    @ File under "Sarcasm",

    Our police/fire stations are publicly owned and funded. So are the vast majority of roads. Most people go through the public school system. We have a national military. Our court systems are owned by the public.

    These are all example of SOCIALISM that have been in our society for a very long time. Personally, I never want to see these items function entirely on capitalism.

    March 8, 2010 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  4. Action..is..Leadership

    Pres Obama thinks leadership is going around the country in front of
    prearranged audiences with embedded cheerleaders and belly-aching about Washington...ridiculing both sides and saying: " They don't get anything done because all they think about is the next election" This man Obama is...well ! Does he not realize that since
    2005 he has been part of Washintons' problem and he himself has not stopped campaigning since.....!!!!!!

    March 8, 2010 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  5. Threat

    This is ridiculous. The dems are just weak. How do you have a healthcare plan where the majority like it's components but not the bill itself? The reps have scared the hell out of a confused public, and the dems have done a terrible job of explaining the thing, and have just allowed their moronic counterparts to scream at the top of their lungs how scary the plan is, without any details.

    People are so easily and emotionally influenced with fear being the strongest emotion. The reps know and abuse this, the dems keep sitting with their thumbs up their behinds. Healthcare should have already been done with a public option, since the reps were never going to support it anyway. Then they would've been working on jobs.

    This is sooooo stupid. Dems! Wake UP!

    March 8, 2010 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  6. S Callahan

    It breaks my heart when I read articles like this....everyone wants everyone to have a viable, good paying , job. But truth be told, the financial handlings at the corportate , oops National, level is not sustainable.....which in turn will be greater jobs loses. The real question is, will this take place before or after the election ?

    March 8, 2010 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  7. if I was crazy, I'd be a conservative too

    It appears that southerncousin has not learned how to change the channel from the Fox anti American channel. Our idiot president is now residing in Texas, and our current president is working on fixing the mess.

    March 8, 2010 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  8. All the news that's fit to omit

    GI Know Nothing is wrong again.

    No way you ever wore the uniform coward.

    WE the people that did DON"T think like liberal know nothings.

    Hurray up, Oprah is on soon, go get some dorito's, check the mailbox, there you go, you "work day is done".

    March 8, 2010 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  9. Andy

    What else is new,THE GREAT MEZZIAH,is too busy trying to take over healthcare and promote socialism to worry about something as petty as jobs.1 and done ,I can not wait for November.

    March 8, 2010 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  10. The Other Michael in Houston

    What all of you are missing regarding the unemployment rate is that America has been running on falsehoods and propaganda for years and the "chickens have come home to roost". There are jobs, but nobody wants a job anymore. And for all of you who are blasting the government for not doing anything about the so called unemployment crisis, well you are the same people who are complianing that President Obama is doing too much. You cannot have it both ways. And besides, there are still massive amounts of people sneaking in this country daily on both borders finding jobs, otherwise no one would not want to come here. The problem with Americans is that most have a sense of entitlement, no one wants to cut grass, lay brick etc. Most Americans don't want to make $8.00 per hour, why? Because you are too busy buying cars that you cannot afford, buying houses that you cannot afford etc. So you 9.5% that don't have a job, go get one, stay there long enough and it will turn into a career. Idiots

    March 8, 2010 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  11. Jake

    Dems are history-come November will be a mass exodus,they/O GREAT ONE NOBAMA just will not listen to the people.People say jobs/jobs and they hear healthcare/healthcare.Dems must go.

    March 8, 2010 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  12. How to Socialize America by Barry Nobama

    The clown prince NObama is far too busy cramming his socialist healthcare bill down America's throat to worry about something as trivial as jobs.His socialist welfare break America's back healthcare comes 1st.

    March 8, 2010 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  13. Zion

    Why don't you guys look up the word socialism? How can it be socialist when the Republican reforms are also included. Educate yourselves and stop watching youtube for your political news.

    March 8, 2010 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  14. 862 BILLION and NOTHING

    I believe many governors said the stimulus money would not work and GUESS WHAT-THEY ARE RIGHT-862 BILLION and NOTHING-How that HOPEY CHANGEY STUFF WORKING FUR YA?

    March 8, 2010 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  15. NOTICE IT SAY DEMS

    OK Dems,your time is up-move over and let the GOP correct yours and your Mezziahs mess.1 and done and could not have happened to a more deserving party-adios amigos

    March 8, 2010 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  16. D

    Jobs, Jobs, Jobs – 80% of 1.9T in stimulas sent to China and other countries. Requests from a Dem in Congress and efforts to stop the funding of these jobs have been ignored.

    Fact Check: Jobs were created.

    March 8, 2010 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  17. terry,va.

    Obummie isn't thinking about jobs. He is thinking about how to further his socialist agenda. He wants everyone to be broke and rely on government. He has done everything assbackwards from how to promote job growth in this country. When are the real tax payers going to wake up and revolt! Only 10% of us are paying more than 70% of Obummie dollars that are being pissed away.

    March 8, 2010 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  18. Bob in Pa

    Like Health Care (sorry, I mean Insurance) reform and Cap & Trade policies will do anything to increase those odd. I am certain that these two bills if passed will create jobs in D.C., but twice as many will be lost elsewhere.

    March 8, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  19. Blimie Shackleford

    Many new jobs will be established with the new healthcare program initiated by the dems: there will be hundreds of thousands of jailers needed for those of us who will not comply with the pay or go to jail scheme of the president.

    March 8, 2010 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  20. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    I don't give a you know what whether jobs help Democrats or Republicans in the polls, it's about helping the American people who so desperately are in need of jobs and healthcare reform. If Democrats can help so can Republicans.

    March 8, 2010 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  21. haren

    My request to Already born voters of Michigan to defeat Bart (Simpson)stupek.
    Let unborn fetus vote for him.

    March 8, 2010 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  22. Fed Up

    They won't make it, but they will lie about it to make it look as if they have. This spin that "ONLY" 36,000 jobs were lost and that is "fantastic news", is for the birds. They only reason the unemployment rate is holding steady is because most people are now not eligible for unemployment. With any luck, everyone in the House and 1/3 of the Senate will be unemployed in November. Vote 'em in. Vote 'em out!

    March 8, 2010 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  23. haren

    If american can forget in short time last 8 years of Bush Admin. than democtrats should not worried about November election pass the HEALTH CARE reform with Public Option and you will have absolute majority.

    March 8, 2010 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  24. Mr. John A. Estes, II (L)

    "Jobs" & unemployment turn-around, unlikly w/o Money, in the U.S. moving around....! Would be a "issue" pushed by the WhiteHouse.gov & can't.!!? Because, there's NO fix, out there. Only, extention of the Unemployment benfit'$.... 1-800-Elect-U.S. LP.org

    March 8, 2010 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  25. Monster Zero

    Projected deficit 2020, 95% of GDP! Go Obama! Go Obamacare! The New Society at fruition, everyone is now equal, equally poor!

    March 8, 2010 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
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