Karl Rove selectively chose unemployment statistics to portray President Obama's jobs record as a failure. However, unemployment has declined from its peak during the most recent recession and millions of jobs have been created since the recession's ended.
In the Wall Street Journal on Thursday, Rove claimed that the unemployment rate is higher today than when the president first took office:
As President Obama prepares to be sworn in a second time, it's a good moment to consider the state of the union during his era.
As of his first inaugural, 134.379 million Americans were working and unemployment was 7.3%. Four years later, 134.021 million are working and unemployment is 7.8%.
But in his December 1, 2011, Journal op-ed, Rove wrote used a different unemployment rate for the beginning of Obama's term:
For another, Mr. Obama lacks the record on jobs of either Mr. Truman or Mr. Roosevelt. Unemployment was at 7.8% when Mr. Obama took office. It's 9% today and is forecast to remain there through 2012.
Rove is applying the December 2008 unemployment rate of 7.3 percent -- a month when Obama was not president -- to Obama's economic record in his January 16 post to make it appear that Obama's jobs record is a failure, while using the January 2009 unemployment rate of 7.8 percent to mark the start of Obama's economic record in his December 2011 post.
But the unemployment rate has declined from its height during the recession, and millions of jobs have been added in the private sector since the end of the recession.