August 3rd, 2012
07:23 PM ET

163K new jobs in July, 8.3% unemployment: Can Pres. Obama break even on jobs?

The U.S. economy added 163,000 jobs in the month of July, which was better than what economists predicted. But, the unemployment rate rose to 8.3%.

Presidential rivals Barack Obama and Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney were quick to respond to the jobs report by holding public events at the same time Friday.

"I think it's an extraordinary failure of policy, a failure of leadership, and I think it's a moral failure for a country as successful and prosperous as our own to go now four years in a mode which feels to many people as a recession," Romney said after a campaign event in Las Vegas.

Pres. Obama touted the amount of jobs created in his tenure. "We have now created 4.5 million new jobs over the last 29 months and 1.1 million new jobs this year." Obama continued, "Those were our neighbors and family members finding work and the security that comes with work."

Obama, Romney spin jobs report

OutFront tonight: CNN Contributor John Avlon, Contributing Editor for Vanity Fair James Steele , and  Fmr. Director for the Congressional Budget Office Douglas Holtz-Eakin.



Filed under: News • OutFront Deconstruct • Politics
August 3rd, 2012
12:31 PM ET

Romney promises 12 million jobs; Does this 'tall order' add up?

Mitt Romney’s top economic advisor Glenn Hubbard recently wrote in the Wall Street Journal that as president Romney would create about 12 million jobs in his first term and millions more after that.

Which means, just to get to 12 million in the first term, Romney would have to create 250,000 jobs each and every single one of his 48 months in office. He says he’s going to do that by cutting regulations and by cutting taxes, but does it add up?

The United States has never had four straight years where job creation was above a quarter million a month. The longest stretch was only 11 months, during the Reagan years.

Plenty of jobs were created in the 1990s, but of course that was in the middle of the internet boom which was not sustainable. Since 1939 only 27% of monthly jobs reports have shown growth of 250,000 jobs or more.

The reality is that even if Romney created 12 million jobs, climbing out of the job loss hole would still be tough. Just to keep up with population growth at least 125,000 jobs need to be created each month. J.P. Morgan estimates that we need up to 8 million jobs over 4 years to make up for those lost during the financial crisis.

The bottom line is that Mitt Romney needs to create 14 million to get us back to even. In the end it may not even matter who is president come January. Great jobs booms come with great moments. The good news? We are on the cusp now of possibly a massive boom in energy jobs and wealth.


Filed under: 2012 Election • Economy • OutFront Deconstruct
August 1st, 2012
07:37 PM ET

Study: Romney tax plan hurts the poor; Does it add up?

The Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center recently reported that Mitt Romney’s tax plan will raise taxes on 95% of America. But Romney has promised a 20% tax cut to everyone. Whose math adds up?

“It’s sort of like an Olympic boxing match today the Romney camp threw a punch fast and early, pointing out that one of the authors was a former aide to president Obama,” reports CNN’s Erin Burnett.

However, one of the other authors on the report was a former aide to George H.W. Bush, and the third author worked for both Bush and Obama.

The report says that if Mitt Romney’s plan becomes a reality, tax revenue because he’s going to be cutting marginal tax rates will drop by $360 billion in the first year alone. That means someone must pay $360 billion more if it’s “revenue neutral,” which is something Romney promised in February.

Romney’s economic advisor Columbia business school’s Dean Glenn Hubbard tells OutFront that the money will come from an economy that grows more quickly than it would under Barack Obama- specifically 4% a year under Mitt Romney, something it hasn’t done 2000. The tax policy center says it is not possible.

New York University’s Professor of Taxation Daniel Shaviro said, “There really is no conceivable way that GDP growth can make a significant short-term difference to the study’s finding.”

The bottom line? More details from Romney are a must.

Burnett also discussed Romney's tax plan with Stephen Moore of Wall St. Journal Editorial Board and Matt Bennett of the Third Way:

Romney's tax plan lack specifics?


July 31st, 2012
08:33 PM ET

GOP blames Pres. Obama for looming defense cuts; Does it add up?

CNN's Erin Burnett tackles GOP attacks against Pres. Barack Obama over the looming cuts to the U.S. military. Does it add up?

Filed under: News • OutFront Deconstruct • Politics
July 30th, 2012
07:36 PM ET

Congress fears mandatory military budget cuts: How bad are the cuts?

There are just four days left until Congress takes a month-long recess, leaving the fiscal cliff hanging.

Dire consequences of the looming fiscal cliff include:

  • Tax cuts automatically expiring for everyone
  • Payroll taxes going up
  • Emergency unemployment benefits ending
  • $1.2 trillion in sequestration cuts, with about half of that sum coming from defense

“The obligation of the commander-in-chief is to act like the commander-in-chief and that would be to prevent these cuts, which, in the words of his own secretary of defense would devastate our national security,” said Senator John McCain at a recent town hall meeting in Virginia.

However, CNN's Erin Burnett points out that previous commanders in chief have done a lot more than President Barack Obama may be about to do. A chart from the Center for American Progress and the Department of Defense outlines how the country has been in this dilemma before:

  • Ronald Reagan cut defense spending by about 10%
  • George H.W. Bush continued those cuts at about 18%
  • Bill Clinton did start to increase defense spending, but it still ended lower than where it was when he took office with a cut of 5%

Overall, defense spending is higher now than it was during the Cold War and during Vietnam. So, asks Burnett, “Do the claims of national security disaster add up when it comes to the sequestration?”

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Filed under: Economy • OutFront Deconstruct • Politics
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