The Corner

Today’s Questions for the President

The unemployment rate for April was 8.1 percent. The unemployment rate has now been above 8 percent for 39 months. When you were selling your stimulus plan in 2009, you predicted the unemployment rate would not rise above 8 percent, and that it would be approximately 5.5 percent today. 

The unemployment rate has not been this high this long since the Great Depression.

The labor-participation rate continues to fall, hitting a 30-year low of 63.6 percent. Indeed, the unemployment rate today would be 8.9 percent had not more than 1 million Americans  dropped out of the labor force in the last year alone. If the labor-participation rate today were the same as when you took office, the unemployment rate would be 11 percent.

What specific policies do you propose for a second term to bring the unemployment rate down to 5.5 percent? Do you expect to have more “flexibility” in a second term to implement such policies? What evidence can you provide voters that such policies will  be any more successful than your policies of the last three and a half years?

Peter Kirsanow — Peter N. Kirsanow is an attorney and a member of the United States Commission on Civil Rights.

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