President Obama hailed this morning’s positive jobs report in a campaign speech today, declaring that the encouraging numbers are “a reminder that this country has gone too far to turn back now.”
The Labor Department estimates that the economy added 114,000 jobs in September, and reported that the economy added 86,000 more jobs in July and August than previously estimated. Crucially, the unemployment rate dropped to 7.8 percent — the lowest level since President Obama was inaugurated in 2009.
Speaking at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, Obama proclaimed that “today, I believe that as a nation, we are moving forward again.”
“Our businesses have now added 5.2 million new jobs over the past two and a half years,” the president continued. “This morning we found out that the unemployment rate has fallen to its lowest level since I took office. More Americans entered the workforce, more people are getting jobs.”
“Now every month reminds us that we’ve still got too many of our friends and neighbors who are looking for work,” Obama said. “There are too many middle-class families that are still struggling to pay the bills.”
“But today’s news certainly is not an excuse to try to talk down the economy to score a few political points,” he added in a thinly veiled shot at his Republican opponents. “It’s a reminder that this country has come too far to turn back now.”
Unsurprisingly, Mitt Romney barely mentioned the good economic news at his campaign event in Abingdon, Virginia this morning. He did release a statement earlier in the day saying that “This is not what a real recovery looks like.”
The falling unemployment rate is just one of several indicators suggesting that the sluggish recovery is trending upward, however. Consumer confidence rose in September, and mortgage applications rose to a three-year high last week, providing a glimmer of hope for the struggling housing market.
President Obama’s full speech at George Mason University can be seen here, courtesy of C-SPAN.