CNN's "American Morning" reacted with an appropriately downbeat report, but the onscreen chyron led with the better news -- showing the lower unemployment rate rather than the job losses. Christine Romans also pointed out that it was the "best unemployment rate since July 2009," though later in the segment she admitted the rate is still "horrible."
NBC's Ann Curry offered a very brief report on the jobs data on "Today," also highlighting the lowest unemployment rate "since last July."
The report also contradicted Vice President Joe Biden's predictions of 100,000 to 200,000 jobs gained each month for the rest of 2010. This month, Biden is off by about 275,000 jobs
On June 2, Obama declared the U.S. economy was "moving in the right direction." The same day, Vice President Biden predicted 100,000 to 200,000 jobs would be created each month through 2010. That prediction,if it came true, would fall 5.2 million jobs short of Obama's promise that the stimulus package would create more than 4 million jobs by the end of 2010.
As of July 2, adding June job losses puts Obama more than 5.3 million jobs away from his promise.
"American Morning," "Today" and the immediate reaction on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" to the June numbers all ignored the failure of Obama's economic stimulus packages. The federal government has thrown billions (the $787 billion stimulus package, not to mention Cash for Clunkers, the Big Three bailout and other measures) at the economy in an attempt to reverse the course of the recession and generate jobs, yet the unemployment rate still stands at 9.5 percent.
But the news media have yet to retract their support for government spending. "American Morning" host Kiran Chetry mentioned other bad economic news and then repeated liberal New York Times columnist Paul Krugman who warned on June 28 that without additional stimulus the U.S. would go into a "third depression."
"Some like Paul Krugman who say, if we pull back on stimulus and spending right now -- austerity measures aren't necessarily working in Europe -- we're going to be in more trouble," Chetry said.
Over on MSNBC Savannah Guthrie was also concerned that the recovery might not be able to "hold on" without further stimulus:
"I think the real issue is, as some of these stimulus programs expire, for example the Cash for Clunkers or the housing tax credit that people were getting, as soon as those stimulus measures are taken away it seems that everything collapses," Guthrie said. "So I think the question for economists and the question that the White House struggles with is: Where is the organic growth? And with Congress in no mood to do anything in the way of stimulus, any further stimulus, what do you do? Can this recovery hold on?"
The reports continued the media's unwillingness to remind viewers of President Obama's promises about the stimulus package. When Obama was selling his massive spending proposal, the administration claimed the package would keep unemployment from rising about 8 percent. The news media have consistently ignored the failure of the stimulus to fulfill that pledge.
On June 4 the news media spun the May unemployment report by emphasizing the Census jobs that "led to the biggest jump in jobs in ten years."
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