Today we got yet another disappointing jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. At first glance, the claims of 162,000 jobs created and that unemployment “edges down” to 7.4% seem like a positive thing, but only a slightly deeper look reveals how poorly the economy continues to perform under President Obama. The drop in unemployment is due largely to the fact that 37,000 people left the labor force – which is to say 37,000 Americans gave up looking for work. In fact, labor force participation as a percentage of the population sits at almost 63.4%, the 19th consecutive month under 64% (the longest stretch since the Carter administration), and nearing all-time highs.
Furthermore, of the jobs that have been created in 2013 so far (barely enough to merely keep pace with natural population growth, by the way), only about 22% are full-time jobs. In short, almost 78% of new jobs this year are part-time, which means lower wages and thus less economic growth. With the looming employee insurance coverage mandate, we have Obamacare to thank for this massive shift from full-time to part-time employment. Employers are moving their existing employees – along with any new positions created – to part-time status in order to avoid the huge mandatory insurance fees, making it evermore imperative that conservatives support the effort to defund it.