Somehow with Paul Ryan drawing relentlessly overflow crowds, polls showing Romney-Ryan momentum and the economy remaining one of the worst in a century, Obama cheerleaders in the media claim week-after-week that Obama is “winning” the campaign messaging and Romney is struggling. Today’s medicare fight is one the Romney campaign brought to the forefront (and not without good reason). Any fears of Romney’s winning argument on the economy being supplanted by the medicare fight ignores one incontrovertible fact: the bad economy will rear its head no matter what political campaigns and the media may want. The Monthly jobless claims report is only the starkest example. Even two weeks after the report we get stories like today’s which provide the state-by-state granularity revealing:
- Not one Battleground state had an improved jobs picture in July
- A large majority of the states have horrible unemployment rates (anything above 7.0%)
- Only media and political spin can believe the President benefits because a state’s individual rate is marginally better than the nightmarish national average of 8.3%
The Labor Department reported Friday that 44 states in all saw their jobless rate go up, with four states seeing no change at all. Only Idaho and Rhode Island — along with Washington, D.C. — saw their rates drop last month. Even though the unemployment rate remains north of 8 percent, some analysts expected Obama to get a boost because many of the swing states that both campaigns are targeting have jobless rates below the national average. Nevada, which continues to have the highest unemployment rate in the country, saw its rate jump back to 12 percent, up from June’s 11.6 percent. New Hampshire (now 5.4 percent), Pennsylvania (7.9 percent) and Ryan’s home state of Wisconsin (7.3 percent) each saw rises of 0.3 percentage points.
|Battleground State||Unemployment %||Monthly Change|
Note: North Carolina which I do not blog about (and you won’t read about 30 days from now) had an unemployment rate of 9.6% and a monthly increase in unemployment of +0.2 percentage points. Also Ohio’s rate was unchanged but 24k fewer people were employed in Ohio than the prior month.