Disappointing Jobs Report Doesn't Make Obama an Underdog, Insiders Say
Nobody denies that when the country only added 69,000 jobs in May -- well below what was expected -- it was bad for the country, and politically bad for President Obama. But even though politicians on both sides will admit that, neither party is willing to go so far as to say that Obama is now the underdog in his reelection campaign against Mitt Romney. According to this week's Congressional Insiders poll, 83 percent of Democrats and 73 percent of Republicans don't believe Obama is the underdog.
After last week's disappointing jobs report, is President Obama an underdog against Mitt Romney this fall?
But, while the parties agree with each other on that question, they have slightly different reasons for their belief. The Democratic Insiders who commented were quick to note that one bad jobs report is not a huge deal.
"One jobs report, and one in which jobs were created, doesn't make or break this race," said one Democrat in a statement that was echoed over and over. "It will be a tough race for sure, but most voters don't have the short-term memories that Republicans have. Republicans want to forget that we were losing 750,000 jobs a month when Obama took office, and that Romney supported a stimulus to turn the economy around."
Another Democrat said that even this bad report wasn't as bad as it was made out to be: "Get real. It's a .1 percent drop," the Insider said.
Of course, even those who still feel confident would rather not have more jobs reports like the last one: "One report in June does not make an election," a Democrat wrote. "But it doesn't help, and future reports must be better."
Republicans, on the other hand, say that Obama remains a favorite because of thr power of incumbency.
"No incumbent president is an underdog," said one Republican.
"The sitting president is still hard to beat," chimed in another.
Even though Republicans believe Obama is still a favorite, they don't believe it's because they think he's doing a bang-up job.
"With this economy, his likability is the only reason he remains the favorite," said one Republican.