America’s payrolls picked up in August, with the economy adding 144,000 jobs, slightly less than economists were forecasting and highlighting the slow and uneven recovery in the labor market that jobseekers have braved.
The latest snapshot of the jobs climate comes just two months before the presidential election. President Bush (news – web sites), who hurried back to the campaign trail after accepting the Republican party’s nomination for a second term Thursday, and his Democratic rival, John Kerry (news – web sites), joust frequently over the health of the economy and the availability of jobs.
Bush says his tax cuts have helped the economy rebound and that making those tax cuts permanent will spur more job creation. Kerry contends Bush’s policies benefit the wealthy, squeeze the middle class and aren’t producing significant job growth.
The economy has lost 913,000 jobs since Bush took office.
That last is the only stat that matters.