Does Obama want the birth control or jobs issue?

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Politics,Beltway Confidential,Mark Tapscott

Some folks think ABC's George Stephanopoulos purposely asked Mitt Romney about his views on birth control during a debate last month to lay the groundwork for the huge ruckus with Catholics and evangelical Protestants that was sparked by the latest proposed rule for implementing Obamacare.

I don't know about that, but what I do know is, if I was an Obama campaign strategist, there is an easy answer to the question of whether it's better for the president's re-election prospects for the political buzz to be about free birth control or why millions of Americans are still out of work.

So with that in mind, check out this chart prepared by the Republican Study Committee showing the number of Americans with jobs throughout the Obama administration and before. This is the story the Obama crew will likely do anything to avoid discussing.

One point to remember when assessing this chart: Note that the percentage declines from a high of 64.8 percent to a low of 63.8 percent. But the graph presents a range of data only between 63.5 percent and 66.5 percent over a period stretching from January 2005 through January 2012.

That means it would be even more helpful to see a larger chunk of the BLS data plotted over a longer period of time to get an idea of how the decline seen between 2005 and 2012 compares with other periods of similar duration.

I'll bet somebody is doing just that as this post is being written.


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