December 4th, 2009
10:14 AM ET
8 years ago

Two very different takes on the jobs report

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Republicans quickly responded to the latest jobs report Friday."]
Washington (CNN) - The White House calls Friday's unemployment report a hopeful sign of an economic recovery, but warns that "there are many bumps in the road ahead."

The nation's jobless rate dropped to 10 percent in November, the Labor Department reported. The unemployment level stood at 10.2 percent in October, the highest rate in more than a quarter century. The Labor Department also reported that employers cut 11,000 jobs last month, the lowest amount of jobs lost in a month in nearly two years.

"Today's employment report was the most hopeful sign yet that the stabilization of financial markets and the recovery in economic growth may be leading to improvements in the labor market," says Christina Romer, chair of the Council of Economic Advisers, in a statement on the White House website.

But Romer warns that the unemployment level "remains unacceptably high," and says "the monthly employment and unemployment numbers are volatile and subject to substantial revision. Therefore, it is important not to read too much into any one monthly report, positive or negative. But, it is clear we are moving in the right direction."

The release of the unemployment report comes as President Obama travels to Allentown, Pennsylvania to begin what the administration calls a "White House to Main Street" tour on jobs and the economy. Thursday the president held a jobs forum at the White House.

A very different message this morning from one of the top Republicans in Congress.

"After yet another month of job losses, it's clear that one question President Obama is sure to get on his 'listening tour' is: 'Where are the jobs'?" says House Minority Leader John Boehner, in a statement.

While the Republican from Ohio says the decrease in the unemployment rate is encouraging, he says "anyone who views today's report as cause for celebration is out of touch with the American people, especially when Washington Democrats' policies – whether it's a government takeover of health care, a national energy tax, or 'card check' – are already costing jobs and will pile even more debt on our kids and grandkids."

Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @psteinhausercnn

Filed under: unemployment
soundoff (72 Responses)
  1. Jim

    Having Republicans suddenly care about anyone but the rich is new to me. I can' t think of a stimulus or jobs program that they haven't opposed in my lifetime. I'm guessing that their prescription for job growth is tax cuts for the wealthy.

    Having them care about Medicare and deficits is also new to me. I could have sworn that nine tenths of the debt was run up on their watch and that they just tried to get rid of medicare a few years ago.

    December 4, 2009 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  2. Lee

    Did Boehner ask these questions over the last eight years, why now? He seems to think that the job losses begain when President Obama took office; how hypocritical he is.

    December 4, 2009 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  3. Bobby

    Very few politicians - regardless of party - put anything higher on their priority list than getting elected. So, I am wondering (seriously) if Republicans now hope that unemployment rate will not improve very much so that they can win more elections in 2010?

    December 4, 2009 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  4. a little sad

    Nothing about today's report says that we are "out of the woods", but it is still a good sign.

    However, the Republican goal is return to power at any cost, even if the cost is detrimental to the country.

    In many ways, perception of the economy can either impede or enhance the recovery. The Republicans will attempt to frame anything positive that they cannot take credit for in as negative as possible a light, exacerbating the situation and extending the recssion for as long as they can.

    I wish we had at least one patriot among them.

    December 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  5. Sam Sixpack

    The body of the story indicates all that has come from trillions of bailout dollars is faint "hope." Everyone now agrees: our new-and-improved spend, spend, spend government doesn't work. Even the white house spin doctor needed a media savvy headline editor to put any kind positive spin on this disaster.

    December 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  6. Yossi Gestetner

    • When the economy gained on average 141,000 jobs leading up to the 2006 midterm elections, was it reported as a good economy?
    • When the economy gained on average 169,000 jobs leading up to the 2004 president elections, was it reported as a strong economy?
    • When the economy lost on average 42,000 jobs leading up to the 2002 midterm elections, was it reported as a recovering economy?

    • When the economy gained on average 106,000 jobs leading up to the 1992 president election, was it reported as a strong economy?

    December 4, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  7. Kathy

    Is anybody wondering if maybe employers just can't lay off any more people explains why the unemployment numbers were down in November? This is especially true for retailers at this time of year. Before we all get excited, let's see what happens after the holidays!

    December 4, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  8. Grim

    Same old programmed response from the same right-wing garbage that got us into this mess in the first place.

    December 4, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  9. awill

    Admit it. It is working.

    December 4, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  10. bill

    While I woudl like to hope this is correct, How many times can we see numbers corrected and completely false. I will wait to see and be very surprised if:

    1) These numbers are not adjusted upward next month.

    2) Come February numbers, when all the seasonal employment at the door busters sales is over, and all the holiday closures for the emloyment offices is accounted for, this number is not right back up to 10+.

    It is a shame that this President, promising transparancy, has created more distrust in the news and numbers that come out forom his administration than any that came from Bush. Can not wait till November to let them know its not OK to forge ahead with reckless spending and growth of the Feds powers as the public disagrees with most every initiaive they want to implement.

    December 4, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  11. Matt

    Losing less jobs doesn't mean people are finding employment. Wake up, people!

    December 4, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  12. Ken from missouri

    The republicans tick me off you get something positive and they want to ruin it the one thing that our economy needs is confidence and they want to make sure that no one get's it I don't care for our president but I don't like to see my country hurting either so if you don't have something to say that will help us then shutup!!!!

    December 4, 2009 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  13. ttbala

    John Boehner,

    ou know who is out of touch with the American people, Y O U, why don't you go back to your tanning salon and take another nap, we do not want to see your stupid face neither hear your malicious remarks, it sounds to me that you are getting paranoid, just thinking that this president might succeed and then where will you and your big mouth will be, it is very obvious to all that all you can come up with is negative remarks with no solutions when you have time to leave your tanning salon, so nobody is interested in listening to your negativity if you were so smart, why did you help the previous administration to ruin this country to what has become, so stay out of the way and let others rebuilt what you ruined.

    December 4, 2009 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  14. SY

    If every unemployed person in this country got a job tomorrow, the Republicans would claim it wasn't good enough. Whine, whine, whine. They cannot mask their disgust with our President.

    December 4, 2009 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  15. ThinkAgain

    Typical Republican response ... and then he has the nerve to say that what President Obama is doing will "pile even more debt on our kids and grandkids."

    Boehner, where was all of your concern when you were voting for the completely irresponsible Bush tax cuts for the wealthy?

    You know, the ones during wartime – unprecedented in our nation's history – the ones that never have/never will tinkle down and create jobs for Americans? (Jobs overseas, where labor is cheap and environmental regulations are non-existent, yes, but for Americans? No.)

    The GOP thinks Americans are stupid and will forget that Bush & Company are the ones who got us into this mess.

    All the GOP cares about is regaining control so they can continue to destroy our country.

    GOP = Party Before Country

    December 4, 2009 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  16. DaveG

    OK, John Boehner, we almost forgot during this simple "fact" that the US economy is showing signs of improvement that we still need to hold onto the Republican mantra "Be Afraid, BE VERY, VERY AFRAID". Go preach your negativity and do-nothing attitude to those who have no faith in themselves or their country. GOOD RIDDANCE.

    December 4, 2009 11:03 am at 11:03 am |

    House Minority Leader John Boehner says: "After yet another month of job losses, it's clear that one question President Obama is sure to get on his 'listening tour' is: 'Where are the jobs'?"

    No, Minority Leader Boehner.

    The jobs report proves that

    A) the CBO was correct about the stimulus helping during this time of recession, which began during the Bush administration, and;

    B) you and the entire GOP are once again talking out of your collective backside.

    December 4, 2009 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  18. Jackie in Dallas

    Most of the jobs are being held up by those corporations that lined the campaign coffers of the Republicans asking where the jobs are...they know full well where they are - offshore due to tax breaks given to companies to put them there.

    December 4, 2009 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  19. Chipster

    Yet, Rep. Boehner had little or nothing to say about the job losses or exploding deficit in 2008, 2007, etc. Gee, I wonder why was so silent until 2009?

    December 4, 2009 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  20. Darrell Burks

    The econmy and the jobs report signifies that the Obama Administration is working hard and moving this country in thre right direction

    December 4, 2009 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  21. Texas Doc

    Mr. Boehner, you need to listen to the American people as well. Help, or get out of the way. If you can't offer soloutions then go plan a tea party or whatever you obstructionists are doing while the Democrats are fixing your mess. That's right, it's yours. Thank God there are some sensible grown ups around that can fix this. Your answer to the crisis: Tea Parties? Gimme a break.

    December 4, 2009 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  22. Justin

    If every out of work American suddenly got a very well paying job Republicans would still find a negative to use... That is what happens when you have no ideas of your own, you find fault in everything and everyone around you and tear others down to make yourself look good. Reagan would call his own party a bunch of "nattering nabobs of negativity".

    December 4, 2009 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  23. George, Georgia

    Unemployment that Tanned Bone Wax brow, smoke em if you got em, created is DOWN and CBO says Obama creates 1.6M jobs. He is right, only cause for celebration would be for him to get burned to a crisp on his tanning bed and blow away like the ash he is

    December 4, 2009 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  24. S.B.

    Boehner seems to forget who caused this recession in the first place and that it was the Bush administration that decided our kids and grandkids should pay for two unnecessary wars. It definitely wasn't the Obama administration. He does seem to have a very conveniently short memory. I agree that one positive report doesn't mean we've turned the economy around, but it is hopeful that things are improving.

    December 4, 2009 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  25. predictable

    Hey John Boehner,

    It is easy to point fingers, blame and complain. Let's face it, that is what the Republican part is all about. But just tell me – outside of all the finger pointing – what are YOU doing to create jobs? Tax cuts for the rich?

    December 4, 2009 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
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