ICYMI: MSNBC: Latest job numbers leave Republican leaders literally speechless
October 10, 2023
Key Point: “It appears that the American job market is so good, the Republican Party has literally found itself speechless — again. … But the Republicans’ silence doesn’t change the fact that by most measures, Americans simply have not seen a job market this good in several decades.”
MSNBC: Latest job numbers leave Republican leaders literally speechless
By: Steve Benen
- A few hours after the latest monthly jobs report was released to the public, President Joe Biden spoke from the White House’s Roosevelt Room and seemed quite pleased. It was tough to blame the Democrat for taking a victory lap of sorts: There was a lot to like in the latest employment data.
- “Good news today: This morning, we learned the economy created 336,000 jobs in September alone,” Biden said. He added that the United States this year has seen the highest share of working-age Americans in the workforce in 20 years, the longest stretch of unemployment below 4% in 50 years, the lowest unemployment rate among women in 70 years, and the lowest unemployment rates ever among Black workers, Hispanic workers, and those with disabilities.
- What’s more, as we discussed on Friday, the U.S. economy has now created roughly 14.4 million jobs since January 2021 — more than double the combined total of Donald Trump’s first three years. In fact, the 336,000 jobs created in September is a monthly total the Trump-era economy managed to reach only once in the former president’s first 36 months in office.
- The president’s eagerness to talk about these developments made sense, but it also raised a related question: What do Republican leaders have to say about the hot American job market?
- As it turns out, not much.
- In keeping with the recent trend, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell responded to the job numbers by saying literally nothing about the good news. No press releases, no tweets, and no public comments. While it’s true that the House GOP appears to be without a speaker right now, I checked the websites and social media accounts from ousted Speaker Kevin McCarthy and both of his would-be Republican successors — House Majority Leader Steve Scalise and Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan — and none of them acknowledged the job numbers in any way.
- It appears that the American job market is so good, the Republican Party has literally found itself speechless — again.
- Circling back to our earlier coverage, this wasn’t at all new: The GOP leadership in both chambers has spent nearly all of the Biden era pretending not to notice extraordinarily good job growth.
- There’s no great mystery here. Party leaders have almost certainly concluded that if they were to comment on the good news, more Americans might hear about it — and that’s the last thing the GOP wants. There’s political utility in simply looking the other way.
- But the Republicans’ silence doesn’t change the fact that by most measures, Americans simply have not seen a job market this good in several decades.