It's the economy, again
June 3rd, 2011
03:44 PM ET
10 years ago

It's the economy, again

(CNN) – Republican presidential hopefuls placed the blame for Friday's disappointing jobs report for May squarely on President Barack Obama and his administration's economic policies.

The government reported Friday that the economy gained 54,000 jobs in May, far less than the predicted 170,000 gain. The nation's unemployment rate also worsened to 9.1 percent from 9 percent in April.

"President Obama's policies made the recession worse and as a result more people are out of work," former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who formally announced his candidacy for president Thursday, said in a statement.

"These unemployment numbers should not be viewed as just statistics – these are real families facing significant economic peril because President Obama has failed to pull us out of this economic downturn. Americans deserve a president who will make job creation his number one priority," Romney said.

Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty also called out Obama by name, saying in a statement, "Today's underwhelming job numbers report demonstrates President Obama's failure to address the tough challenges we face as a nation. We need a leader to stand up and make the difficult choices essential to spur economic growth and create new jobs."

Former Godfathers Pizza CEO Herman Cain also took aim at the Obama administration.

"While this administration promised job creation and an unemployment rate under 8 percent with the passage of the stimulus spending packages, based upon today's unemployment report, the unemployment rate still hovers around 9 percent. We have yet to see the positive results from the billions of taxpayer dollars spent in that process," Cain said in a statement.

Another likely 2012 contender, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, issued a similar statement lambasting Obama's stimulus programs.

"Rather than empowering people and the free market to drive our economy, President Obama has instead decided to focus on the heavy hand of government," Santorum said. "As history has shown, government intervention and infusion may spur minimal short-term growth, but over the long haul those policies do nothing but explode our deficit and take freedom away from the American people."

Only former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, who is expected to announce his intentions to run for president soon, stopped short of naming Obama, issuing a statement that instead focused on his tenor as governor.

"Today's report showing a rising unemployment rate and staggeringly little job creation further demonstrates that this country is in need of policies that will actually grow jobs. As governor of Utah – while our country faded into recession – we created an environment that brought jobs to the state without resorting to out of control spending and debt. It is time for America to do the same, putting an end to the suffering of millions of Americans who are struggling to find economic opportunity," Huntsman said in a statement.

- On Monday, June 13, CNN will host the first New Hampshire Republican Presidential Debate, live from Manchester, NH at 8 p.m. ET. Follow all the issues and campaign news leading up to the debate on and @cnnpolitics on Twitter.

Filed under: 2012 • Economy • Jobs
soundoff (47 Responses)
  1. Publius Novus

    Where are the jobs from the extension of the Bush tax cuts? I thought providing extensions of the Bush tax cuts would result in the creation of hundreds of thousands of jobs by the rich guys. Where are they?

    June 3, 2011 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  2. Gale

    You people putting these comments on this site are just like the Democratic Politicians. You spew all these lies and expect people to believe you with no proof at all. The Democrats have lied since day one. But I guess the President has helped GM by upping the limos in the WH garage by 73%. They gotta look good for all that traveling and campaigning, and oh yeah, who do you think is paying fo this?

    June 3, 2011 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  3. Republicans - The "Not Intended To Be Factually Accurate" Party

    Here's what I know. Somewhere in Wisconsin, Ohio, Michigan, Missouri, Indiana, Illinois & Kentucky, there is a blue-collar working man/woman who has President Obama's leadership and courage to thank for him / her still having a paycheck.

    This person works for General Motors, Chrylser, of one of their SUPPLIERS ( tires, steel, electronics). By forcing tough management changes and providing capital to continue business operations as US auto companies, Barack Obama has allowed many HUNDREDS-OF-THOUSANDS of US citizens to keep food on the table and a roof over their kids heads.

    Not a one of these GOP politicians was IN FAVOR of the auto bailout. ALL of them whined and complained about the President taking this action. The railed about what a bad deal the "taxpayers" were getting. There is little doubt that if the President had allowed this companies to fail, many of those jobs would have moved overseas to Toyota, Volkswagon, Nissan, etc. Well, not only have the taxpayers been made WHOLE but JOBS have been preserved and have even expanded.

    This demonstrates who makes the better decisions on the economy.

    June 3, 2011 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  4. DJ

    The jobs numbers are actually worse than the 54K, considering that half came from the McDonalds push

    June 3, 2011 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  5. Excoastie

    The republicans need to read their history books and not the ones published in Texas. What is happening is a repeat of 1937. The employment picture was improving until the republicans blocked all government spending, the result was the nations slipped back into a deep recession.
    Was I mistaken or did I see Sarah Palin wearing a Star of David? What an insult to every Jewish woman alive!!!

    June 3, 2011 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  6. maxdenn

    More tax cuts for the wealthy. Now that will fix everything.

    June 3, 2011 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  7. Bill from GA

    Gale, before you call facts lies, look them up!

    June 3, 2011 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  8. seriously???

    While dems and repubs battle it out, corporations post record profits while doubling the workload of its employees claiming the business climate is just too uncertain. B.S. Companies have a good thing going putting the squeeze on its current employees, that's the reason why unemployment is so high but funny thing is it's never mentioned.

    June 3, 2011 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  9. NVa Native

    Worst Presidential failure (Bush/Cheney) in our history supported by worst Repub Congress caused worst financial melt down (Great Recession) since the Great Depression! It would take the Messiah to fix this huge pile of crap that Bush/Cheney built over eight years in less than as many years.
    We all know how good Obama is as illustrated by the weak and false criticism by the radical right (i.e. birth certificate, etc), and I guess it goes with who always refers to Obama as the Messiah. Kind of like the only ones talking about taking guns away from citizens is the NRA and GOP.
    Slowest recovery – we’re lucky we have Obama to lead us into recovery?

    June 3, 2011 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  10. CAW in MD

    @Gale - so what is your proof that what people are saying on this board are lies? If you really want to go after folks saying things with no proof, let's look at Republicans. We are told that we can't get rid of the Bush tax cuts on the wealthy, because we'd be raising taxes on the job creators. If that was true, then theoretically our best production of jobs should have been the last decade. Instead, it was one of our worst. If that was true, then theoretically those job producers, having gotten their vaunted "certainty" about tax rates, should be busily creating jobs. But apparently that's not true either. Boehner says that if we don't couple spending cuts with an increase in the debt ceiling, that jobs will be lost. Yet the Congressional Budget Office, the official scorekeeper for Congress, directly contradicts this assertion - that pushing those kinds of debt reduction measures on this economy will cost us jobs and economic growth. So who's not telling the truth here?

    June 3, 2011 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  11. once upon a horse

    this was what the GOP needed right now to get all the attention off of their Medicare fiasco and trying to save Congressman Ryan. It's not going to last though because even though it wasn't the high job number hoped for, it wasn't NEGATIVE. Funny though there were some GOP members when the job numbers were coming out large after the 2010 elections trying to take credit for it saying it was because they MADE President Obama exend the Bush tax cuts. Where oh where are those folk now?

    June 3, 2011 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  12. CAW in MD

    And I'll bet you good money that your first reaction will be to call me a name rather than refute what I've said...

    June 3, 2011 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  13. Mike in Texas

    When jobs grew over 200K the previous month the Republicans took credit. This month when the job growth is 54k they blame Obama. Interesting since 1) the Republicans have done nothing to take credit for and 2) Obama didn't change any policy between April and May.

    54K increase in jobs is a hell of a lot better than 750,000 lost. The problem is many America's want instant gratification and results. It is this attitude that got us into this mess in the first now pay later, rack up out refi's, ELOC's up the wazoo. McMansions,,,,gotta keep up with the Joneses even though we hate them. Gotta have this and that can't go without....

    Trickle up drives the economy, not trickle down. Demand creates jobs, not tax cuts. You can give me all the tax cuts in the world but if demand for my product or service doesn't grow, I don't hire.

    June 3, 2011 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  14. betterdays

    All those GM and Chrysler vehicles made by those fortunate bail-ees will still depreciate faster than my (two) Hondas. So if you are looking for an investment that really isn't much of an investment; if you really want to sacrifice your own best interests for the common good, "Buy American" automobiles. Throwing money at a losing proposition because you feel guilty about doing otherwise... how Democratically utopian.

    Perhaps we should invest in trying to figure out how to convince people that our vehicles really aren't as awful as they would seem to be. Oh wait, we've been trying to figure that out for about 35 years now.

    June 3, 2011 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  15. Sniffit

    "because GWB did not borrow $850 billion with promises to create 4 million jobs."

    Right. Instead, he borrowed about that much with promises to kill 100,000 or so Iraqis.

    June 3, 2011 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  16. seebofubar

    Every once in a while I have to come and look at the comments on these blogs just to see if Democrats are still as stupid today as they were a few years ago............YUP.

    June 3, 2011 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  17. Sniffit

    "You spew all these lies and expect people to believe you with no proof at all. "

    No proof? Just because you're very very good at closing your eyes, sticking your fingers in your ears and screaming "LALALALALALALALAALLALALALA" like some crazed and ululating Taliban soldier firing his rifle into the air every time someone starts citing facts, evidence or historical record you don't want to hear or which triggers your pathological denial reflex, doesn't mean that there's no proof. You're just living in an ideological fact vacuum and it's the lack of oxygen that's killing your ability to think rationally.

    June 3, 2011 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  18. maxdenn

    Isn't it obvious? What we need is more Laffer Curves and GWBnomiics.

    June 3, 2011 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  19. Beeman

    The unemployment rate under Bush averaged 4.7% from 2001-2007. Obama needs some lessons.

    June 3, 2011 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  20. lynn

    I was going to say exactly as "seriously", but all I'll do is echo the words. Companies are sitting on piles of cash, but why would they cut into their profits by hiring more workers? No need to hire, keep your present workers scared of losing their jobs so they willingly work double shifts.

    June 3, 2011 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  21. Palin Power

    The only person who can completely fix this economy and bring jobs back in record numbers is Sarah Palin. We need to elect her as our next President so she can implement Palinomics. Palinomics will drive unemployment down to zero and create more jobs then there are people to fill them. The Palination will truly be the land of opportunity and jobs.

    June 3, 2011 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  22. Dave

    As usual, all the GOP can do is point fingers and criticize. Let's see here... The GOP campaigned on creating jobs. So, where are they? That's all you twits talked about for months and you have done nothing. Now you all have the nerve to blame Obama. For once, take some responsibilty. Oh, wait, you people are completely incapable of that...

    June 3, 2011 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
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