What is the difference between unemployment at 8.2% and unemployment at 7%? Answer: the Republican Party.
The Republican Party’s persistent opposition to helping states and local governments avoid laying off public employees is almost TOTALLY responsible for the difference in unemployment that we might have expected at this point in the recovery (about 7% or so) and the level of unemployment that we have (over 8%). The Republican Party INTENTIONALLY inflicted this pain on America. They did so because the leaders of the party and party strategists decided shortly after the 2008 election that the best road to control of the House, Senate and White House for Republicans was one based upon delaying and obstructing any and all efforts by the Obama administration and Democrats to stimulate employment in the private sector and prevent the loss of jobs in the public sector.
Republicans were only partially successful in blocking private sector job growth. They were not able to totally block the 2009 stimulus. As a result, the private sector has been adding jobs in a pattern similar to what we saw in the last two previous recessions. However, Republicans have been VERY successful in purposely generating public employee job losses at the local and state level through a combination of delay and obstruction at the national level to proposed for relief to the states and orchestrated action at the state level by Republican-controlled state Governors and legislatures to eliminate as many public jobs as possible.
We now have clear evidence of the damage Republicans have done for the most cynical of political reasons.
It would be a shame if Republicans are rewarded with success at the ballot box for such behavior.
Read the analysis here: http://econintersect.com/b2evolution/blog1.php/2012/07/11/public-employment-this-time-its-different