Romer: Obama's not to blame for female unemployment
Former economic adviser to President Barack Obama Christina Romer stands next to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Obama at the White House in 2009.
July 11th, 2012
04:06 PM ET
11 years ago

Romer: Obama's not to blame for female unemployment

Boston (CNN) - One of the president's former top economic advisers said those who blame President Barack Obama's policies for the decline in job creation among women in particular are being dishonest.

"That's someone trying to lie with numbers," Christina Romer said Wednesday.

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The former chairperson of the Council of Economic Advisers said the disparity between men and women, recently seized upon by Republicans, is the result of repercussions from the economic downturn beyond the president's control.

A new web ad out Wednesday from the conservative independent group American Crossroads said the Obama economy constitutes the American "war on women."

It cited a well-regarded National Women's Law Center study that showed 17 million women are now in poverty, 800,000 more than when the president took office in 2009. The spot also pointed to a July report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics that indicated three quarters of a million more women than men are unemployed.

But Romer, who left the White House in 2010 to return to teaching, explained the shift by pointing to the increase in unemployment among men earlier in the economic downturn, when they were hit in greater numbers by a decline in areas like construction. Therefore, as the economy rebounds so too will the jobs men lost at the beginning of the financial crisis, she said. In 2008 for example, men made up a much higher percentage of the jobs lost than women, at 75.4%.

The so-called "war on women" has occupied a considerable amount of chatter on the campaign trail. Republican presidential candidates, including presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney, were criticized by Democrats during the primary for their more socially conservative stances. They were also targeted for opposing an Obama administration ruling that would have required religiously affiliated institutions to include contraception coverage in health care plans for employees.

But it was Republicans who adopted the narrative Thursday, appealing to the voting block then-candidate Obama won with 56% in the 2008 presidential election.

- CNN's Ashley Killough contributed to this report

Filed under: Christina Romer • President Obama
soundoff (23 Responses)
  1. tellin it like it is

    >The former chairperson of the Council of Economic Advisers said the disparity between men and women, recently >seized upon by Republicans, is the result of repercussions from the economic downturn beyond the president's >control.

    so obama wants to take credit for all the good news but none of the bad news. the good stuff was because of what he did and the bad news well that is the result of other things or somebody else. yeah, we get it. the buck stops somewhere else. obama is such a weak pathetic leader. he simply refuses to take ownership of anything that isn't positive or that builds up his messiah image.

    July 11, 2012 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |

    The republican bafoons party and the bafoon in chief have no credability on any issue that effect the middleclass ,woman ,Latinos ,blacks whites ,well his Chinese jobs program is doing pretty well I guess .

    July 11, 2012 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  3. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Does this mean that 16.2 million women were in poverty under the previous administration?

    July 11, 2012 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  4. xfiler93

    Obumbles and the DEMS always blame someone else. amazing.

    July 11, 2012 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  5. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Were any of the 8 million jobs lost in Bush's last three years, women's jobs?

    July 11, 2012 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  6. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Thanks to the Kochs and Rove for pointing out that due to republican policies, 16.2 million women were in poverty before President Obama took office.

    July 11, 2012 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  7. Name JR

    Let me see. A former govt employe leaves to go to another govt job. Then turns around defends the big kahuna and that's news. It would be news if any obama apptee ever got a job in real world.

    July 11, 2012 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  8. ryche

    tellin like it is, you are exactly correct.. notice how NONE of the bad news is obamas fault, but all of the good news is because of his policies... Democrats remind me of a kid in 5th grade.... never takes any responsibility unless its something that can make them look good.. than they will take all the credit even if it had nothing to do with anything they did... Immature 5th graders...
    so once again we get to see that our current white house resident is THE MOST UNPRESIDENTIAL president we have ever had... Actually referring to Lincoln as his homie... .. UGH... what a bafoon.. more of a bafoon than W was...

    July 11, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  9. David in Houston

    @ tellin it like it is:

    Take your own advice. The repubs have consistently done this throughout Obama's presidency. For example, when the job numbers ticked upwards the repubs were quick to say Obama deserved no credit whatsoever. However, when they ticked downwards the repubs acted as if Obama was 100% responsible.

    Pot, meet kettle...

    July 11, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  10. Linda

    No the buck stops with the Republicans......when they stop stonewalling every effort that this President puts forth and trying to make him look like a failure and start working with this administration to get this country back on it's feet then and only then will these companies start hiring.......Romney is just using his rich billionaire friends money to discredit this President just like he did his own republican canidates that ran against him in the primary......There is a ton of work these Republicnas could be doing that would profit them and their party and this country, but instead they are taking another vote to repeal the Healthcare for the 33rd time......when is enough enough for these republicans? Move on to creating jobs like you promised when you took over the House in 2010......or was that just lies to get elected.......

    July 11, 2012 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  11. Vera

    It looks like Romer hasn't missed any meals. She continually propped up the stimulus and ad nausem pleaded we "give it more time". Well it's finished now and has been exposed as one big lie wrapped in deception. – Thanks for wasting 1 Trillion.

    July 11, 2012 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  12. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    We need to get training programs to get started and continued. I don't see that as a problem and a good investment. Where are the Republicans on this?

    July 11, 2012 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  13. Dave

    Let me guess – it is Bush's fault, right? I'm started to understand how this works now!

    July 11, 2012 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  14. Name JR

    Hey stein. How about english traing for a start.

    July 11, 2012 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  15. PJ/TX

    So, the Republicans and their "leader" Mitt have nothing to offer but to follow Obama around the campaign circuit
    in their little busses, try to turn the women's argument against him, try to turn Mitt's outsourcing policies into
    Obama's and in general look like the fools they are.
    If they had any good policies they would be shouting them from the roof top, but they are so conniving and
    manipulative they are afraid to "tell it like it is". Pretty pathetic antics and highly transparent.

    July 11, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  16. tellin it like it is

    isn't this the same christina romer that said the obama stimulus plan would keep unemployment below 8% and would have it at 5.6% right now? it hasn't been below 8% since, and above 8% for 42 months and many more to come. i do believe it is. seems like she didn't know what she was talking about then and hasn't learned a thing. is she another know it all academic with no real world experience? probably.

    July 11, 2012 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  17. Expat American

    Obumbles and the DEMS always blame someone else. amazing.
    Whereas the Republicans are absolved of all responsibility because they are the party of ‘Values’ (See Abu Ghraib).

    July 11, 2012 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  18. Carlos

    Telling It Like It Is.... Not all of the stimulus money has been spent. The party of no voted not to pass the President's jobs bill. Had they done so, the unemployment rate would be at 5%. But the republtards knew that and they voted NO because it would make the President look good. The fact that that the rate is 8.2% right now down from where it was is a testament to the President. Can't be a good quarterback if only half the team follows the game plan.

    July 11, 2012 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  19. tellin it like it is

    >Expat American
    >Whereas the Republicans are absolved of all responsibility because they are the party of ‘Values’ (See Abu Ghraib).

    the soldiers that did this were democrats.

    July 11, 2012 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  20. tellin it like it is

    >Carlos Not all of the stimulus money has been spent. The party of no voted not to pass the President's jobs bill. Had >they done so, the unemployment rate would be at 5%.

    you are very misinformed my friend. you need to do some research. the democrats pased all of this spending when they controlled both the house and senate. there was no way for the republicans to block any of this. many wish they could have blocked it because it has proven to be a huge waste of money for no results and a huge debt our kids will be saddled with down the road. i'm afarid you are another victim of the obama-democrat lie machine.

    July 11, 2012 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  21. The Elephant In The Room

    If you had to pick 1 party as hostile to women, and in particular, not looking out for the economic insterest of women, which 1 would it be?

    Here`s a hint. it starts with "R" and ends with "n".

    July 11, 2012 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  22. obamaouttathere2012

    If Obama had made a teeny-tiny-itsy-bitsy-teenie-weenie-little-bitty inprovment to the economy with the stimulis and his other schemes in his first two years, I might belive the whole "repulican obstructionists" line. As that didn't happen, Obama policies working to fix the economy is in the same universe as the tooth fariy and My little Pony. Nice try, guys.

    July 11, 2012 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  23. Rick

    I am an independent. I voted for Reagan and I voted for Clinton. I can now say that I will never, EVER, vote for a Republican agan. If I don't like the Democratic candidate I just won't vote. Republicans are not for the American people. They are for Republicans first and second. They have had absolutely no interest in the economy improving for the last 3 1/2 years and done everything in their power to make it worse. And they call themselves Patriots. Boehner, Cantor. McConnell, Jindal, Perry, Gingrich, Romney. My God, they have done more damage to this county in the last 3 years than Bush did in 8.

    July 11, 2012 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |