Clint Eastwood's Inflated Unemployment Count

Clint Eastwood unemployment speech

By Chris Isidore


NEW YORK -- Clint Eastwood's biting criticism of President Obama was a big hit with the crowd at the Republican National Convention. But his reading of the nation's unemployment situation missed by a wide margin.

Eastwood's speech on Thursday night mocked supporters of the president like Oprah Winfrey, who cried the night Obama was elected four years ago. "I haven't cried that hard since I found out that there are 23 million unemployed people in this country," Eastwood said. "This administration hasn't done enough to cure that."

But the U.S. Labor Department, which puts out the official government jobs data, counts 12.8 million people as unemployed -- not 23 million.

Even if you add in unemployed people who are not counted in that total because they are not actively looking for work -- a category the Labor Department terms "marginally attached" -- that number rises to just over 15.3 million.

To get to the number Eastwood cited, you need to also count part-time workers who wish they were working full-time. That adds just over 8.2 million. Total: about 23.6 million.

The Romney campaign itself has used the 23 million figure, including in a four-minute campaign video entitled "A few of the 23 million."

The Romney video doesn't explicitly say that the 23 million are unemployed. Instead, it says "millions of Americans are struggling under the Obama economy. Here are a few of their stories." While many of the people in the film are unemployed, some have part-time jobs like digging graves or helping a neighbor's moving business.

The Labor Department reading for January 2009, taken just before Obama took office, found 12 million unemployed, 2.1 million jobless who were not actively looking for work and 8.1 million part-time workers who wanted to be working full-time.









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August 07 2014 at 9:43 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
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August 07 2014 at 9:41 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
brazurio

The only plan and strategy Mitt Romney and the bagger party have is to make a class-income clean up. Their paln is to vanish the middle class from US society and make a bigger disparity between riches and poors. The Republicans ideology is: " Let's go back to the time where the riches demand everything in this country and the poors just have one option is to say: Yes, Sir."

September 07 2012 at 6:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
brazurio

I think Mr. Eastwood is afraid to have its taxes increased when Obama be reelected for the second term. Shame on you Mr. Eastlierwood.

September 07 2012 at 6:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
brazurio

I am gald to read the official numbers of unemployment in this country, because everything that Mitt Romney and his "Bandoleiros" saying is based in lies after lies. He is not capable to get one fact straight and come up with an effective plan that will convince me that he is the right man for this country. Unlike that, the RNC was resumed in attack President Obama, but they lacked to show a real and reasonable strategy to turn this economic situation around. Unfortunatelly, there are lots of people out there that buy what Republicans and the baggers party say. I hope they can see the real facts and not be driven by liers like Eastwood and P. Ryan.

September 07 2012 at 5:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
songbirdgray

YOU ARE RIGHT , THERE ARE MORE THAN 23 MILLION PEOLE OUT OF A JOB,, HE WAS BEING KIND TO THE OBAMA PRESIDENCY. IT'S EVEN WORSE THAN HE STATED. HE WAS ABSOLUTELY RIGHT , WE OWN THE GOVERNMENT AND WE PAY THE POLITICIANS SALARY, THEY ARE GOING TO HAVE TO LEARN THAT , I UNDERSTAND MITT ROMNEY WILL NOT TAKE A SALARY IF HE IS ELECTED ,PRESIDENT, HE DIDN'T TAKE A SALARY AS GOVENOR OF MASSACHUSETTS, EITHER.

September 07 2012 at 5:41 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
rrdspr1

THE LABOR DEPT, AS ALL OTHER LIBERAL GOV'T AGENCIES ARE STOOGES FOR THE SO CALLED COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF (WHAT A LAUGH, NO MILITARY EXPERIENCE WHATSOEVER). THEY WILL BOW DOWN TO ADOLPH OBAMA OR FACE THE CONSEQUENCES. OBAMA NOW CRIES LIKE A SPOILED KID, PLEASE, PLEASE RE-ELECT ME, MICHELL NEEDS A NEW PAIR OF $6000 SNEAKERS

September 07 2012 at 4:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
joe

Well, the labor department just proved his point. This pharsing of numbers down to 8.1% or whatever they call it. Just because someone found a part time job, at Target or Walmart or Burger King doesn't mean they are gainfully employed, they have just taken those entry level jobs until or in case something better comes along. Then those jobs can go back to the permentally under employed.

September 07 2012 at 3:23 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Earl Fromley

i wonder if the huff post makes up this s*** that they put in here,surely there are not that many idiots making these claims about how good obama has been in office,neither of these presidential candidates can do anything to help this sinking ship we call the USA,to many entitlement programs for the unwed moms who keep producing offspring,to many illegals,to many welfare fiends who for generations have not worked or do not ever want to work,we are like the titanic,only our top mast is still showing above water and surely will go to the depths below very soon,right now it is only obama or romney who will go down with the ship,you make that choice november!

September 07 2012 at 2:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
eliteantique

The US Labor Department never counts the other 21 million who are off unemployment starving. Ask the 99 club who are still looking for work and not counted.

September 07 2012 at 2:07 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

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