Majority of Republicans Mistakenly Think Unemployment Rate has gone up Since Obama became President

Tuesday, November 24, 2015
(graphic: Steve Straehley, AllGov)

Call it partisanship or just a sign of still-struggling Americans, but a majority of Republicans incorrectly believe the jobless situation in the United States has gotten worse under President Barack Obama.


A survey conducted by Bloomberg News revealed 53% of GOP voters said unemployment has gone up since Obama took office in January 2009. That is not the case, based on federal labor statistics cited by The Washington Post. Those numbers show the jobless rate six years ago was 7.6%. Today, it stands at 5%.


Bloomberg found 34% of respondents overall think more Americans are out of work than in January 2009.


Another survey, by the Public Religion Research Institute, discovered 72% of Americans believe that the country is still in recession, although the Great Recession ended in 2009.


Janell Ross at The Washington Post said these numbers may reflect how bad off many people still are financially. “A situation where people’s personal economic circumstances remain either so bad or so reduced from what they were in the run up to the Great Recession that they continue to view the economy through irrationally grim glasses,” she wrote. The perception might also come from people listening to politicians who have a stake in Americans believing the economy is bad and someone new is needed to fix it.

-Noel Brinkerhoff


To Learn More:

Bloomberg Politics National Poll (Bloomberg)

How Come 53 Percent of Republicans Think the Unemployment Rate has Risen under Obama? (by Janell Ross, Washington Post)

Majority of Republicans Wrongly Believe Weapons of Mass Destruction Program was Found in Iraq (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)

As National Unemployment Rate Stabilizes, Rate for African-Americans Rises Again (by Matt Bewig, AllGov)


Michael Brown 8 years ago
"How Come 53 Percent of Republicans Think the Unemployment Rate has Risen under Obama?" Probably because the number of Americans who are employed has decreased during the Obama administration. Fewer Americans are working now than when he took office. The unemployment rate is a phony stat in many ways. Millions of people have given up searching for work.

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