The unemployment rate went up one-tenth of a percentage point last month and, worse, the economy only added 54,000 new jobs.
This is very bad news for the White House. Obama remains vulnerable as long as the economy fails to start generating jobs. Indeed, it is striking that so many GOP heavyweights are ducking the fight for the presidency given the President's vulnerability as long as the economy is sluggish. But, seasoned pols like Haley Barbour and Mitch Daniels recognize that after stroking the GOP base into a frenzy of foolishness, anyone able to capture the GOP nod will be so far outside the mainstream, they will be unable to win the White House, even against an incumbent nursing a bad economy. In any other year, a 9.1 percent unemployment rate would trigger a flurry of political obituaries for an incumbent.