Bill O'Reilly Lets Donald Trump Push Conspiracy That 4.9 Percent Unemployment Rate Is A "Phony Number"
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Fox News host Bill O'Reilly allowed GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump to push a phony conspiracy theory that unemployment rate is really 25 percent. On February 5, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released its monthly "Employment Situation" summary for January 2016. BLS reported that the economy created 151,000 jobs, and the unemployment rate fell to 4.9 percent -- its lowest point since February 2008. Bill O'Reilly invited Trump on the February edition of his show to respond to the report asking whether we should "give the president credit" for the low unemployment rate? Trump claimed that "the [unemployment] number is 25 percent, and probably higher than that." O'Reilly failed to push back on Trump's allegation simply stating, "Okay, so you're not going to give President Obama any credit for the 4.9."
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BILL O'REILLY (HOST): I'm sure you were glued to the set this afternoon. President Obama announced the economy was improving, jobs are 4.9 percent unemployment. Should we give the president credit for that?
DONALD TRUMP: Look, you can't give credit. The economy is having the worst -- it's so bad. Hey, Bill, every time I go out, I have packed auditoriums, packed rooms because people don't have jobs. They don't have the jobs they want.
O'REILLY: But it's 4.9 percent unemployment.
TRUMP: Any time -- it's a phony number, Bill. The number is 25 percent, and probably higher than that. People are looking for jobs, they can't find them, they keep looking, they give up, and now they're statistically employed. Bill, the economy is doing terribly. Look at even now the stock market, finally, that was the one part of the economy, and finally that's crashing. These are phony numbers put up by politicians to make them look good. When you hear 5 percent and 4.9 percent, it's not the right number. Plus, as you probably have heard, the jobs are bad jobs. They're really low-level jobs and bad jobs, I have seen 15 different reports on that. But the fact is, if you look around for a job for months and months, you can't get it, you just sort of go home and forget about it, you are considered employed. There are millions of people out there, Bill, that can't get jobs.
TRUMP: That's why I'm filling up these stadiums.
O'REILLY: So you're not --
TRUMP: If you had a real fight, if you had a real --
O'REILLY: And you and Bernie Sanders have the same -- you and Bernie Sanders have the same thing, and we've got Bolling and Rivera coming up, gonna and ask him about that. Both the left and the right are saying the economy is rigged. Okay, so you're not going to give President Obama any credit for the 4.9.