Can President Obama win re-election if unemployment goes back up to nine percent?
February 22nd, 2012
05:00 PM ET

Can President Obama win re-election if unemployment goes back up to nine percent?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Unemployment could be headed back up to 9% again - not what President Obama wants to hear as he faces re-election.

Gallup reports that the unemployment rate in mid-February stood at 9% - up from 8.3% in mid-January.

Gallup's monthly report serves as a preliminary estimate of what the U.S. government will report next week.

The report also found 10% of U.S. employees are working part-time, but want full-time work.

And they put underemployment at 19% - up significantly from just a month ago.

While the Obama administration was quick to trumpet a lower unemployment rate of 8.3% in January, others were already warning about a gloomy jobless picture.

The congressional budget office predicted last fall that unemployment would remain close to 9% until the end of 2012, and now they say unemployment will stay above 8% well into 2014.

Meanwhile there are other signs that the economy is not out of the woods by a long shot.

Gas prices are already at their highest levels ever for this time of year - and they're headed higher. In Florida, some drivers are already paying almost $6 a gallon.

Government job cuts could place a further damper on the economy with the government being the largest employer in the country.

Lastly, while manufacturing revs up and stocks rally, just remember this:

It only takes one shock to set the economy back. Last year we had lots - from the Arab spring revolutions to Japan's earthquake and Europe's debt crisis.

Can you say Iran?

Here’s my question to you: Can President Obama win re-election if unemployment goes back up to 9%?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Becky in Las Vegas:
Sure he can win, Jack. As long he's running against a Republican.

Not a chance.

Only an Iranian nuclear threat can stop President Obama from being re-elected.

Julia in Fayetteville, North Carolina:
President Obama will be re-elected by the Republicans. The president is still trying to correct the mess they made prior to his first day in the White House.

Rick in Detroit:
It is possible that President Obama could survive 9% unemployment, but very unlikely. It would probably take a major blunder by the GOP opponent for Obama to win with the economy slumping again. The economy is what put the president into the White House, and the economy also led to the 2010 midterm slaughter of the Democratic Party.

David in Las Vegas:
Jack, If unemployment goes up… If Europe's financial world collapses… If gas is $5/gallon… If,If If. Why would he want to be re-elected?

In a normal election year, I would say no. But with the current field of Republicans, he may just carry all 50 states. I'm beginning to wonder if the GOP is trying to throw the election.

soundoff (147 Responses)
  1. Michael from CT

    President Obama already may have blown it by saying no the Canadian pipeline deal to get oil from a friendly country while sending that money to the middle-east instead to countries that support radicals while gas prices here right now are already at $4.00 per gallon. It was a very foolish decision saying no to Canada's offer of oil, I just hope the president will reverse his decision before we hit $5.00 per gallon.

    February 22, 2012 at 12:58 pm |
  2. Conor in Chicago

    Yes, he totally can. I know the conventional wisdom says that Presidents don’t get re-elected if unemployment is above 8% but this is also a new era of politics. There are several other factors that will inform someone’s vote like war, wealth distribution, economic fairness, views on corporate personhood, etc. But let’s also not forget something key to all of this: If 8% of Americans are unemployed, that means that 92% of Americans ARE employed. They may hate their jobs, or might not make the wage they want to, but we are not in a situation where there are hordes of unemployed roaming major cities. If you go out on a Saturday night it doesn’t look like a recession. People who are employed are not feeling the sting of this economy and will have no problem voting Obama again. Let’s not forget that.

    February 22, 2012 at 12:58 pm |
  3. Jerry Driskell

    How about can he win reelection if it is 8%, or 9% or 10% ?
    The answer is the same to all; YES.
    Blairsville, GA

    February 22, 2012 at 1:00 pm |
  4. Frances

    President Obama must win reelection. That tea party religious right wing radical group of Republican candidates is downright scary. All intelligence and common sense has left the Republican party. Dwight Eisenhower would be crying if he could see his party now.


    February 22, 2012 at 1:02 pm |
  5. Michael Bindner, Alexandria, VA

    Elections are contests. It depends upon who is running against him. The GOP does not have a candidate. Of course, if Obama does something about mortgage debt, the problem will be inflation, not unemployment.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
  6. james in greenville nc

    Of course he can, Jack. Obama has every special interest group and they will vote for him regardless of whether or not they have a job. Presidential elections are no longer about the economy, they are about pandering to the special interest groups. Jobs have become secondary to special interest ideals.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:15 pm |
  7. John from Alabama

    Jack: Yes, President Obama can win, but it will not be easy. It should be difficult to win such a job as President of the United States. President Obama has a better chance since the Republicans look like clowns in a circus. President Obama has one attribute which will help him. The truth and nothing but the truth. President Obama fought to have unemployment benefits extended, and the payroll tax to stay at 4.2%. President Obama never had a honeymoon period, because senators like Jim Dement, John McCain, and Jeff Sessions. More could have been accomplished, but the Tea Party wing said no to everything.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
  8. DT - Saint Paul, MN

    It isn't the President's job to create jobs. How do people even draw the connection? The president of a company has no reason to hire more people so you blame the president of the United States? That is the most ridiculously removed association I've ever heard of. "I can't get a job.... stupid Obama!" If you want jobs to skyrocket, you have to create demand. The only way to create demand is to give people money (not necessarily "give", but they need more of it) who WANT things, but CAN'T afford it. Its called economics. Giving a billionaire a tax break does NOTHING. Giving a corporation a tax break does NOTHING. Competing in a price war with a 3rd world country does EVERYTHING. Open your eyes people.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
  9. Doug Ericson

    I think Obama can win at 9% and probably all the way up to 20%, because the Republicans haven't shown any inclination to change their ways any more than the Democrats. Obama may even win a Grammy Award too. Doug, Pepperell, MA

    February 22, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
  10. Julia, Fayetteville, NC

    President Obama will be re-elected by the Republicans. The President is still trying to correct the mess they made prior to his first day in the White House. The Republicans just don't get it.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:33 pm |

    Jack, if President Obama had not promised all those imaginary 'shovel ready' jobs, he would not have to be eating those words now. If he somehow finds a REAL SHOVEL to produce jobs with over the next eight months, then he does have a chance.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
  12. Noel Sivertson New Mexico

    I believe he can given the opposition. Even a starter lawn that needs watering is better than a field full of weeds.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
  13. ranch111

    Not a chance.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
  14. Rick McDaniel

    Who knows?

    The people of this country spend zero time, becoming aware of the political environment and what that really means to them. They are so naive, they would likely just follow the Democratic Party to slaughter, before realizing they have been led down the primrose path. That's what sheep do.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
  15. Phyllis G. Williams

    Can President Obama win re-election if unemployment goes back up to 9%?

    Since it is not the President who employs the people, when he has done
    all he can to help them, the employees thoughts as well as actions are
    responsible for the percentage, not the President.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:48 pm |
  16. Ed from California

    Jack, you need a civics lesson too. The Executive branch really has no power to spend money, it's the Legislative branch that has the checkbook. And, who has the checkbook? John Boehner. How many jobs has Boehner created? None!!And I'm not talking about jobs being created in China, either. What have the republicans accomplished so far? Nothing. They give the rich tax breaks and hate on gays and women. Mr. Boehner, Where are the jobs???

    February 22, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
  17. Ken from Pinon Hills, California

    Unemployment is already over nine percent. The numbers don't include the millions who have been dropped from unemployment benefits and still are not working. Let that cat out of the bag he would have serious trouble.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
  18. Tom in Desoto, TX

    Sure he can, republicans can't figure out what day it is and you expect them to have a platform? The platform...the trai has left the station. Put republicans in one room and they'll all disagree with each other.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
  19. Ed from MD

    Yes because Americans hate math, but love to cheer Yes we can.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:54 pm |
  20. Annie, Atlanta

    Given the extremism on the right, I'd say his chances are pretty good right now irregardless of unemployment numbers. At least we women voters can feel pretty confident that our President isn't hell-bent on terrorizing us. Sadly, that can't be said for the GOP. Have they lost their minds?

    February 22, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
  21. Andy in Vancouver, BC

    Of course Obama can win – haven't you seen who he might be running against?

    February 22, 2012 at 1:56 pm |
  22. Bill of New Mexico


    But then, I don't know why Obama should be re-elected anyway.

    Unless, Santorum is the Republican candidate.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
  23. Jenna Roseville CA

    Can President Obama win re-election if unemployment goes back up to 9%?

    Of course he can. All Obama has to do is to show how the Republicans blocked his JOBS bill and provided no jobs bill of their own while protecting Corporations who continue to outsource American jobs and their Union Busting.

    Roseville CA

    February 22, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
  24. bob z. from pa.

    if it goes to 9%it won't be in the news. obama got that covered

    February 22, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
  25. Outbama2012


    February 22, 2012 at 2:08 pm |
  26. axcfm,fasd

    No. Because obama is still gonna be cooking the numbers. And EXPLETIVE like you would be reporting them.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:08 pm |
  27. Mycroft Lake Travis TX

    Why Yes Jack, Because most people realize what is really going on, even though the mainstream news medias have not covered it. What George W. Bush, Dick Cheney Carl Rove and many others did during their reign, was drove our country into the Grand Canyon. President Obama has things turning around, it might take 20 years to recover from that last Bush Presidency, because of the ultimate destruction they caused and the people that have honestly evaluated that disaster it might be a very cold day in hell, if we ever see another Republican President. Plus that older age crowd that are brainwashed by FOX news, well... it's thinning out. Obama has the wiser peoples, the youth vote and the non racist vote in the bag, not to forget the minorities vote either. Obama Landslide in 2012, Vote for Obama he got Osama !

    February 22, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
  28. Rich McKinney, Texas

    It will be a challenge but as long as the republicans keep putting religious zealots at the top of their ballot he is a shoe in for 4 more years.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
  29. Susan- NJ

    The employment figures were beatexplained by Abe LincolaN: "You can fool some of the people some of the time but you can't fool all of the people all of the time." The figures went down to 8% after 350,000 people left the job market. How do you suppose they are living? The debt just keeps rising and rising.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
  30. tom bulger, Canandaigua, NY

    Look at his competition. Billionaires already under investigation by the Justice Department might orchestrate a doubling of gas prices and the sky to fall, but voters will still choose Obama.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
  31. Felecia

    Yes, because his competition is a joke.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
  32. Susan - Nj

    Abe Lincoln sid it bestwhen it comes to unemployment figures: "You can fool some of the poeple some fo the time but you can't fool all of the people all of the time." The unemployment figures are at 8% because 350,000 people are out of the job market and raising the debt.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
  33. Steve, Clifton, Virginia

    President Obama can win re-election if the unemployment rate got back up to 9 % or more if the current field of Republican presidential candidates remains unchanged.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
  34. bytehead

    As much as I don't believe that Obama has followed through on enough of his campaign promises to earn my vote, I also don't see any current running GOP candidate that I could possibly vote for either. A generic Republican, I could vote for, and by generic I mean somebody that also isn't Jeb! Bush, Sara Palin, or any other right wing candidate. I suspect that my generic Republican candidate doesn't even wish to be identified as Republican right now.

    Bryan Price in Jacksonville, Florida

    February 22, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
  35. Ed from Texas

    Yes, given the current field of Republican challengers.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:24 pm |
  36. Bizz, Quarryville Pennsylvania

    Jack, looking at the field of Republicans running for president, I think Obama could win if the unemployment rate went to 10%. There are many things out of Obama's control that could make the unemployment rate rise. The fragile European economy and a war in the Middle East with Iran. People realize that no matter who is president this is out of their control even if they claim they have direct contact with their God.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:24 pm |
  37. Leta B.

    Only an Iranian nuclear threat can stop President Obama from being re-elected.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
  38. Kim , Dodge City, Ks

    Even though unemployment is a problem that corporations are liable for, the President will bear the bruntof the blame from the conservative right. Obama can't make companies hire people, especially companies that have gone completely off-shore to enhanmce their profits and dodge taxes.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:39 pm |
  39. pat in michigan

    I wish the media would speak candidly for once. It does not matter who the president is.If we don't replace the Congress. then it doesn't matter what percentage unemployment is.
    Congress has not acted on anything because they want to keep their jobs. They need a scapegoat and the president ...Any president will fit the bill."look at him over there while we do nothing over here" "it's all his fault"!

    February 22, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
  40. Mark in BC NV

    Only people who want something from the government will vote for this loser. It's the "plantation" mentality of most Americans now a days. Everyone has their hand out like the Katrina people. Want, want, want and not work for it.
    The party for these losers? The Democrat Progressive Socialist Plantation Party!
    Mark in BC NV

    February 22, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
  41. Karl in Flint, MI

    IF it goes back up, and IF is a big word here, it will be more difficult for Obama to win re-election, but given the mentality of the front runners on the GOP ticket, he will still be re-elected by a landslide. He is doing the best he can, given the GOP obstructionists, and Independents and many Republicans are seeing what the real choices are and the good ones are not on the GOP side of the ballot.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
  42. Dave, Orlando, FL

    I don’t see any earthly reason how Obama can possibly win re-election given the totality of his dismal first term. The only thing he has going for him is the pack of wackos running against him.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
  43. Loren

    Let's hope not. While he seems to be taking a page from certain Republicans with his proposed change to the corporate tax rate, he doesn't seem to have a clue to stimulating the economy to create jobs, relying on failed Democratic thinking of government stimulus through government projects and jobs. Any increase in unemployment would merely reflect the continued failure of those policies.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:51 pm |
  44. Valtom

    Unemployment won't go back up because King Obama has directed that the Dept. of Labor keep 'cooking the books'. He will have them just keep reducing the NUMBER OF JOBS AVAILABLE so that the percent unemployed will just keep going down. Fewer people will actually be employed, but the technique used for calculation will make it look good and the State Controlled Media will celebrate his success! PRAVDA at work.
    Say, American Airlines cuts 16,000 jobs. That means there are now fewer jobs available, so the percentage unemployed goes down. If you added back the number of jobs available when Obama took office, the unemployment would be 12%.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
  45. David Gerstenfeld

    Jack, If unemployment goes up: If Europe's financial world colapses; If gas is $5.00+/gal; If ,If If. Why would he want to be re-elected ?
    David, Las Vegas

    February 22, 2012 at 3:03 pm |
  46. Mike S., New Orleans

    To quote former Louisiana Governor Edwin Edwards, the only way the president will not be re-elected is if he is caught in bed with a dead woman or a live boy. Have you seen his competition? The Republican party is in shambles, being forced to choose between two proven losers of elections.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
  47. Paul - North Carolina

    Most likely not but I think the current trend will continue and the rate will be below 8% before the election. Of course the Republicans, sensing that, have already created their next cause celebre; gas prices. They will find a thousand reasons to try to pin rising prices at the pump on Obama. The talking heads and bloogers on the right will be in full voice and millions of right wing-nuts will drink the Kool Aid. Of course, if unemployment was 3% and gas was 29 cents a gallon they'd still find some reason to denounce Obama. After all, he's not a "rea' American" you know.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
  48. Kevin in CA

    Sure he can win re-election at 9% unemployment – just look at who the alternatives are:
    The ultimate wall streeter
    A radical religious zealot

    February 22, 2012 at 3:12 pm |
  49. Larry Feierstein-Denver

    As long as one of the gang of 4 clowns is nominated no problem. If someone from outside enters the convention, and the unemployement rate coupled with gas prices spikes, a very tough election. Let Rick keep spouting his old time religion, let Newt talk about the end of the world as we know it and Mitt , well he just has to be Mitt, a landslide in November.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:13 pm |
  50. chris

    jack no mix this with geting gouged at teh pump, more spending, and the icing on the cake obamacare that he passed without reading the 2,500 page bill or letting us know what is in it before it was passed so he's out in nov 2012

    February 22, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
  51. Nancy, Cunningham, TN

    If concerns that the President has were given solid form, we would be surprised to see the things swirling above his head. Unemployment would be a sledge hammer, Iran's nuclear program would be a bomb, high gas prices would be shark, and the "say no" Republican members of Congress would be a battleship. Yet President Obama keeps his cool and promises a better tomorrow if we all keep working together.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
  52. RickFromDetroit

    It is possible that President Obama could survive 9% unemployment, but very unlikely. It would probably take a major blunder by the GOP opponent for Obama to win with the economy slumping again. The economy is what put the President into the Whitehouse, and the economy also led to the 2010 midterm slaughter of the Democratic Party. I would say that most Americans are primarily concerned about their own financial position and 9% unemployment does not paint a pretty picture for the majority of the people, but politics are full of surprises, so we will have to wait and see!

    February 22, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
  53. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: Considering what is remaining of the GOP candidates--Obama will be re-elected even it the unemployment goes up-–and the GOP can blame it on SATAN!

    February 22, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
  54. Cliff Glass - Rego Park, New York

    Depends on the alternatives, Jack. If the Republicans continue with their punch drunk resuscitation of the Laffer curve, which has resulted in the elimination of the middle class and Super-pac driven politics and policy, President Obama will cruise to victory.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
  55. Lamar in Charlotte

    President Obama can win re-election if unemployment goes back up to 9% because the Grand Old Party won't have anything viable left to offer after it finishes tearing itself apart to select the party's presidential candidate.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
  56. Mitoosense

    Obama ran a successful campaign against Bush. It appears the GOP may run another Bush in 2012.... Moon Community, and Church Lady will both lose to Obama

    February 22, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
  57. BJ

    Since the jobs were outsourced by the Wall St businesses in the first place- and only they can bring them back- why would anyone blame the Democratic President if they don't come back in enough numbers? Much praise has to be given to the companies who have stayed here, and those who have or are in the process of bringing jobs back. The President has worked very hard trying to woo them (or shame them) to do just that. He's tried to start new businesses, but has been thwarted at every turn by the Republicans (Can you say Green Economy?). How anyone could even remotely blame the President for the higher gas prices would be either ignorance or insanity. That is caused by 1) Pure Greed 2) Rampant Wall St oil speculators......greed also 3) The shuttering of oil refineries to control & drive up gas prices (oh- greed again) 4) Wild speculation about world politics- such as the Greece bailout or Iran's nukes in the media......this drives up the price of gas- only when it's resolved, nothing goes down again! 5) The media constantly giving them cover by saying such things as: "Gas priced will be $5 /gal by Spring"........how could they possibly know that? It just becomes the new reality. Oh- by he way- we are currently traveling around Florida in a motorhome......& nowhere have we seen anywhere near $6/gal gas. The highest we've paid in $3.71/gal. Maybe in Key West where they have to truck everything in so far, it might be a little more (last year it ran about $.25- $.30 a gal. more)....... Exactly where in Florida are you getting your "Facts"?

    February 22, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
  58. Michelle-Bedford. TX

    Even if unemployment rises again I think Obama can still win. The Republicans have nothing. Gingrich finally self imploded, Romney has tried valiantly but will never totally win the hearts of the GOP and Santorum with his ultra religious views could never be a mainstream candidate. Who knows? Maybe Sarah Palin might decide to "step up" and run. In that case Obama would win by a landslide.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
  59. Dan in Albuquerque

    Jack, until there is a significant decline in the number and infliuence of the Tea Party/Norquist lawmakers, the obstruction and filibustering will not allow large programs to rebuild the infrastructure and pass laws to bring jobs back to America. Cuts alone, teamed with tax loopholes for the rich that are the mantra of the right, would spell disaster very soon if they prevailed. And if the Supreme Court follows its track to the right and kills Affordable Health Care, many more will be sick and dying AND unemployed.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
  60. Ivan

    As long as Santorum continues to preach how the rest of us should follow his draconian and arcane rules of his provincial world and as long as Mitt Romney continues to believe that the safety net is just find for the poor, than Obama is going to have another four years as President. Most Americans are centrists and have the G-d given intellect and wisdom to make a very clear choice for our future.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
  61. Ivan

    As long as Santorum continues to preach how the rest of us should follow his draconian and arcane rules of his provincial world and as long as Mitt Romney continues to believe that the safety net is just fine for the poor, then Obama is going to have another four years as President. Most Americans are centrists and have the G-d given intellect and wisdom to make a very clear choice for our future

    February 22, 2012 at 3:43 pm |
  62. Randy

    It doesn't matter. Whoever wins is going to revert back to the "new normal" meme that their bosses on wall street and bilderberg have told them to sell to the American people. The elections are for the suckers who still think this is a democracy.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
  63. Phil, georgia

    Pres. Obama should be able to win if its 15%!! The bottom line is that he is doing a variety of things to combat the problem which Republicans have no ideas but the same tried and true failed ones. The real question is What have Republicans done to help the Economy?? There has been a ton of good news and I'm sure tons more to come as Americans believe again and take more action to make America better.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
  64. Steven Fitzpatrick

    I have to believe that the Republican Super-Pacs and Corporate Moguls have been planning for a long time now, to stage a significant % of lay-offs andf such, as the election comes closer, to counteract any good news that might come out of Washington regarding a resurgance of the economy. They"ve harped on how 'Bad' Obama has made it for so long, that they can't afford to allow any positive show of hope!
    Personally; I am delighted with field of Republican candidates. With the possible exception of Ron Paul, there's not a contendant among them thats electable.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
  65. Wm in PA

    Yes, we hope so! But the Obama Hate Machine Right-Wing-Nuts have their "ditto headed" followers unable to think nor understand the skill the 1%ers use to control them/us. So, it will be a close race with the future of the United States in the balance.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
  66. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    It would be a real miracle, like the U.S. Hockey team beating the Russians, if the President wins re-election. People in this country are really gullible to believe that any of the current GOP candidates will resolve the issues we face as a country, like gas prices and unemployment. Just remember who got us into two wars and where the stock market was 3 years ago.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
  67. Ron WPAFB

    Jack, the Republicans in the House and Senate are the ones who voted against Jobs bills that the President pushed forward. Firsts, the Bush Administration created this financial mess with, thta bankrupted the countruy and killed jobs. Then everytime the President sent Jobs Bills to the House, Boehner and Cantor killed them. Can they get re-elected? Who would do that? Obama is the only real choice!!!!! The whole GOP Candidate list is a buncch of liars and theives, all who could care less about the middle class and poor!

    February 22, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
  68. Pete in Florida

    Given the whack-a-doodles running against him, absolutely yes.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
  69. Rebecca from Georgia

    Yes, because its because of Obama that the unemployment rate isnt higher.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
  70. Tony DaSilva

    Yes, Obama has done an impressive job considering the obstructions and the forces that willfully and purposefully have been working against him,despite his many attempts to meet his NAY sayers half way

    February 22, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
  71. Terry in Virginia

    As long as the GOP continues to declare war on women's rights, he most definitely can win re-election if unemployment goes up. The GOP actively works against him and women. It's time to toss the entire hypocritical GOP out of office everywhere.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
  72. Pete in Georgia

    Jack, don't you think it's time to get "real" and admit that unemployment in America is actually between 15 and 20 % ??
    It's the untimate insult to our intelligence for this deceitful federal government now in power to continually broadcast unemployment at 9 to 9.5 %. A complete joke.
    There are so many hundreds of thousandths of people unemployed that have "slid into oblivion", long unrecorded, forgotten, gone from the precious federal records, which gives the misleading administration license to deceive.
    Beyond pathetic.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
  73. Paulette from Dallas,PA

    The January numbers are not a true reflection of unemployment because many places hired temporary help for Christmas and others have completely stopped searching for work. Obama will get a second term because the Republicans can't get it together to put a viable and strong candidate.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
  74. Jeff In Minnesota

    If he gets Santorum as his foe in the Fall, unemployment can go through the roof and he'll still win. Otherwise, the President will have a lot of explaining to do to the electorate about why his economic policies are junk.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  75. Julie from Louisiana

    I am afraid he can, Jack. He seems to get a pass on everything. Now they are even blaming the republicans for Obama rejecting the XL pipeline. It never stops. I guess if unemployment goes back up, it will be Bush's fault, AGAIN. He takes responsibility for nothing!

    February 22, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  76. James Martin

    If Obama points out that the spike in unemployment is due to Boehner and their 3 ring circus of NO, and that had they said yes for a change, the jobs would have been there, he should be able to effectively deflect blame to where blame is due. Redumblicans like Boehner, McConnell, and Cantor are dangerous for the country and installing a theocracy in the form of Santorum or Romney won't help the situation either,

    February 22, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  77. Ben from Boston

    ABSOLUTELY YES . . . . . . if Hillary is on the ticket!

    February 22, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
  78. Larry in Houston

    Can President Obama win re-election if unemployment goes back up to 9% ?

    Answer : Doubt It. But if he does – then he will be the 2nd person who have walked on this earth, to have walked on water.

    Larry IN Houston

    February 22, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  79. ken, atlantic city, nj

    Absolutely. Unemployment is 20% in the black and hispanic communities and yet 95% of them support him. The unemployed are being bought off with unemploymnet benefits, and the workers are getting their payroll taxes cut at the expense of social security. Santorum is nuts so it looks good for obama.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  80. andy Lynn, MA

    Unemployment could hit 50% and I would still vote for President Obama. Which of the Republican Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse can anyone take seriously? Santorum? How soon would he abolish the Office of the Attorney General and replace it with the Grand Inquisitor? Amazing how a country, founded on religious freedom, can come full circle. Remember a vote for Santorum is a vote for religious correctness. You must have sex in the missionary position. God approves.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  81. Joyce Grissom, Marshall, TX

    Of course he can. All Americans need to do is continue to listen to the GOP clown show and their messages of fear and gloom,. With the President, there is hope if and when he gets a Congress that will work. That's a postive message, one which the GOP can't grasp.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  82. gilbert macias/Lake elsinore ca

    Yes , there is no other choice but Obama .
    Americans wont elect Santorum aka the pope or the other guy ..Whats his name again oh ya Mr. Mitt aka "Robocorp"

    February 22, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  83. Martha Brooks

    It would have to top 20% for most voters to even consider voting for any one of these clowns the GOP is bent on inflicting on us.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  84. Brad, Portland, OR

    Remember, the Presidential election is a choice, not a referendum. Republican policies over the previous 8 years... or even 30 years, if you go back to Reagan, have tanked the economy and thrown us into a recession deep enough to almost be another Great Depression.

    Obama has been slowly digging us out of the Republicans' hole, despite being obstructed at every turn by the Republicans, who actually WANT the economy to be bad in order to make Obama a one-term President.

    In November, we can vote for Obama and a possible 9% unemployment rate, or we can vote for the Republican nominee, who has vowed to return to the same Republican principles that damaged the economy before, throwing us into Great Depression II and a 25% unemployment rate.

    Neither is great, but I'd rather have the 9% unemployment rate than the 25% one the Republicans offer.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  85. roadwarrior

    that bum couldnt win re election if unemployment was at three percent

    February 22, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  86. C Longman ( Bconlong) Turks & Caicos

    Jack hear this, it's not if he can win! He will. You see Jack the american electorate are not as dumb as the GOP want the rest of us to believe. They do not have any maybe workable plan to leas America to where it needs to be in the world standing, are they conveniently forgetting where the they left America? Come on Jack tell them to step up or shut up.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  87. Cy Gardner

    The people who are out of work have enough time on their hands to figure out that it is not the current president's fault that the economy is tanking. European countries that slashed budgets are doing much worse. And the Republicans offer the same "solution" they always offer: Unemployment? Huge deficits? Medical care? Social Security? The question doesn't matter, their answer is don't make the rich pay taxes and don't make the rich obey laws. Even some of the lowbrows who still believe FOX are beginning to doubt the efficacy of the GOP's one and only plan for everything. cy from arlington, va

    February 22, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
  88. Yomi Olalere

    Jack, here is my short answer to you, HE WILL WIN re-election.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
  89. Glenn Caballero

    Of course he can Jack. With this President the numbers simply don't matter. Any other President presiding over 9% unemployment and $5 gas would be toast, but our President has tens of millions of die hard supporters who will vote for him regardless of the real state of our union. Not to mention that the current feckless field of Republican candidates are doing all they can to ensure his re-election. All the President has to do is keep showing up for work every day and he'll win in a landslide.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
  90. Gigi Oregon

    He sure can...look at the alternative. Most of us are concerned over the greed and corruption that is strangling the U.S. economy and the greedy Republican congress who want to make Obama a one term president. "What evil lurks there?" . We want "change" but the Republican Congress has sat on their hands for four years not lifting a hand to help those who lost jobs, homes, pensions, etc... and you expect them to help change America when the name of the game for Republicans is... "Money" "Money" "money" remember that theme song from a TV show..."Yes he Can!" this time, with my conservative vote. I'm morally conservative , not stupid.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  91. roadwarrior

    it never fell below ten percent

    February 22, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  92. Michael, from Smiths, Alabama

    President Obama is not responsible for the unemployment rate increasing or decreasing, its the world economy. I wish people would get that through their heads and stop placing the blame squarely on Obama's shoulders, when he's trying to improve the jobs outcome, and with little to no help from Congress, I might add.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:39 pm |
  93. Joe Young

    From Slipper Rock, PA

    Yes, he will win, almost certainly. I predicted the past three elections well in advance. Mr. Obama cannot lose this one. Have you noticed against whom he will be running?

    February 22, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
  94. roadwarrior

    i hope everyone is ready for eight dollar a gallon gas re elect obama this is the change he promised and it only gets better

    February 22, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
  95. Terri from Blountville, TN

    As long as the Reoublicans keep up the crazy talk, it is not only possible but probable.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
  96. Terry Wells -Hoosier Hillbilly-Greensburg,IN

    Actually, if the truth was known it's already much higher than that now?

    February 22, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
  97. Brian Samuels (Chicago)

    Of course Jack! The Democrats can use the GOP's talking points against them.....Since the economy is getting better, those that had left the workforce are getting back into the workforce now that the economy is better. Regardless, things are getting better.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
  98. LA Belle

    If U.S. businesses keep running up their greed to foreign countries, where will the jobs come from? Congress didn't even try to stop the outsourcing or regulate and tax these businesses. President Obama has recently mentioned taking on the outsourcing of U.S. businesses which is a major problem for unemployment in this country. Which party do you think is over-joyed about the high unemployment rate? So, yes, President Obama can win re-election.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
  99. Dale N.M.

    If the price of gasoline goes over 4 dollars, I guarantee you it will go over 9% no he cannot win. Also the Keystone decision will torpedo him in a lot of ways.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
  100. Mike

    Absolutely, Mr. Obama can be re-elected.
    With NBC, ABC, CBS, CNN, Hollywood and virtually every other media entity supporting him...how can he lose?

    February 22, 2012 at 4:52 pm |
  101. becky, Las Vegas

    Sure he can win, Jack. As long he's running against a Republican.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
  102. Esperanza

    Yes Jack he can.
    President Obama is the only one that truly hasn't gone off the deep end like the current GOP candidates. With the GOP war against women & they wanting to go back to GWB policies I'll be voting for President Obama.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
  103. AB

    Jack, It would be extremely difficult for Obama to win re-election with a high unemployment rate and high gas prices. Obama has a chance to lower the gas prices by tapping the strategic petroleum reserves, encouraging more drilling in the Gulf of Mexico by loosing current restrictions that are in place. One the jobs front, Obama can lower unemployment by making the federal government a leader in hiring more Americans. This means federal agencies should organize more job fairs and do what they will eventually have to do: Hire more people to work their operations. Moreover, Obama and Congress can spur hiring growth in the private sector by tying tax cuts to job hiring performance. If Obama does the abovementioned things, he will have a better than average chance of being re-elected in November 2012.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:00 pm |
  104. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    Jack the Ripper could beat any of the idiots that call themselves Republicans, what a joke that any of these retards think they are qualified to be President.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:07 pm |
  105. Bill in Pennsylvania

    Yes Obama can get reelected because he will be the lesser of two evils. I, for one, am extremely underwhelmed by the Republican field of candidates and have been disgusted by the way the Republicans in Congress refuse to compromise. I agree with the Republican position on some issues, but they have to prove to me they care about more than lowering taxes on the rich before I'll vote for any of them.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
  106. Alex Apple (Nashville, TN)

    Jack-9% unemployment would make it tough on the president to win, but I will still vote for him because he is the candidate that I trust and believe in. I don't see a man of his character on the GOP side

    February 22, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
  107. Andy

    Not one person can alone can Fix a problem that inolves millions of people, its impossible. Maybe if everybody worked together to actually get something done, then maybe well see improvement.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
  108. Fred Colby; Menominee, MI

    Jack, Obama can do it. He just needs to take a page from Reagan's playbook...the bully pulpit on national TV constantly blaming the "do-nothing" Congress...which already has kept recovery near stagnent.
    Fred, Menominee, MI

    February 22, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
  109. Derrick W., Los Angeles CA

    Yes Jack. Because i'm never gonna vote for the religious extremist crusaders, borderline racist, and out of touch rich guys on the other side. I'll pick my president on the issues. I'm not some fool that will flip flop based on an employment number. Enough already. Send me my ballot now.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  110. Charles from Wasilla, Alaska

    He can win no matter what the unemplyment rate is if people wake up to the catastrophe that would follow a GOP victory.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  111. Bill - Upper NYS

    Sure Obama can win. With one of those GOP clowns in the White House, the unemployment rate would be much higher than 9%, and the Fat Cats would just keep on getting richer off the backs of whoever is still left in the middle-class.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  112. Sharon

    Yes. It doesn't matter what the employment rate is .... it matters who is the Republican candidate.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  113. Aman from Hillsborough, NJ

    Honestly, the Republicans have no strong opposition to Obama. Mitt Romney, although he claims to be, is still not "the guy" for the Republican party. But it will be an uphill batter that Obama will have to fight. He will have a hard time as that will become the subject of negative ads. He will still win, in my opinion, but it will a long and hard struggle. An 8% unemployment rate is still bad, but it is certainly better than a 9% unemployment rate.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  114. Jerome from Louisville

    Unfortunately, yes. Americans have degenerated so much that they'd rather have their commander-in-chief on tour with the Rolling Stones than "thinking" about the Keystone pipeline. If environmentalists are so concerned about gas pipe lines, why don't they start by digging up the ones that run to their homes?

    February 22, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  115. Mary, Pennsylvania

    I have family members that lost jobs, they went on the hunt and are all employed now, one sister got several serious offers for employment. There are three companies in my immediate area that are constantly looking to hire qualified employees, I wonder how serious people on unemployment are looking for work. Maybe the extensions should be stopped.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  116. Ed Fertik

    9% would be a very phony figure since it excludes those who stopped looking for work or are too lazy to try and it includes part time employees. But Obama is a failure in every respect, not just in this respect. But with the media firmly part of the Obama campaign and totally biased against conservatives, he could win and god save us all if that happens.

    New York

    February 22, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  117. Matt

    Absolutely! Especially if the GOP can't find a viable candidate that to face off against President Obama.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
  118. Sam from CT

    Yes Jack. I think that you seem to forget that we live in a society of well educated and informed individuals. The days of blaming the president for everything are long gone. People have enough sense to realize that the private sector is responsible for itself. Also, somne people may not like some of Obama's policies but like him as a person. Likeability is going to be a key factor as well.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
  119. Bob in San Jose

    Easily YES! Given the joke GOP candidates & their party's track record for protecting profits over people which caused this economic mess, seriously, get real America! Obama is by far the best choice.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  120. Merrill Needham

    In a normal election year, I would say no. But with the current field of Republicans, he may just carry all 50 states. I'm beginning to wonder if the GOP is trying to throw the election.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  121. Carrie

    Jack- YES even if gas is at $10 a gallon and unemployment is at 10% Pres. Obama still wins, have you seen the GOPT CLOWNS?

    February 22, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
  122. Solomon from Reading Pa

    Of course he can Jack. If the GOP could cough up a decent candidate Obama would have no chance, but with the current selection of GOP nominees, he has a very real chance of getting the reelection.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
  123. RAC from South Carolina

    The sad part about this question is there are an alarming amount of ignorant people that still think this guy is the answer. If these ignorant followers vote again, will have an even bigger problem. Either Romney or Santorum has to have some serious clout in them to get the job done....PLEASE! get O.B. OUT!

    February 22, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
  124. Tom, Saratoga Springs, NY

    Jack, this Republican debacle is so pathetic that Obama could win re-election if unemployment was 25% and gas was non existent and we all had to walk to work.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
  125. Ray Tennant

    Jack it's not about unemployment it's about the stock market
    If the stock market is up the President will get re-elected no matter what unemployment is
    If the stock market is down the president is out
    Right now the stock market is up just try and sell the market adn see how fast you lose money
    They will not let the markets go down
    at least not until Obama gets re-elected

    February 22, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
  126. Craig in Florida

    Yes he can and he will. Look at these morons running against him. Have you ever seen a circus like this?

    February 22, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
  127. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    Yes, as does anyone really believe this absolute ideology that these Republican nominees find themselves locked in will ever move this country forward? It will only be more contempt and distraction.

    It doesn't matter who is president, who is in congress, who the CEO of a private company is, the problem with the moral and fiscal elements of this society is the use of absolute ideology in order to gain power. It is this addiction to power that is imploding the U.S. Otherwise, these issues could be solved practically tomorrow.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
  128. Greg

    The unemployment number isn't accurate. Never has been. It doesn't include those who stopped looking for jobs. In a recovery first it goes down as more jobs are available, then it goes up as people get optimistic and start looking again. It's Economics 101. There's no double dip coming, so if the GOP's hanging their hat on a broken statistic instead of some real candidates, Obama will cruise to another term.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
  129. Judi

    Yes, absolutely Obama can win and must win.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
  130. Donna Noggle

    Yes, I cannot stand any of the republicans running against him. They are one-sided about Christianity, and our morals and have not said much of anything else about helping our economy, so for sure, YES. All they seem to care about is if we follow their religious teachings and then I suppose they think God will bless our economy if we are all Christians and do not use birth control.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
  131. AJ

    YES, YES, YES. Look at what he will have running against him!

    February 22, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
  132. Rhea, St. Croix, US Virgin Islands

    A 50% unemployment rate would still be insufficient to prevent this president from getting re-elected considering the candidates for the GOP nomination. Sitting home broke, unable to pay bills or feed your family is a far better fate than having to live in a world where either Gingrich, Santorum or Romney is President of the United States.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
  133. Carrie in Alabama

    Yes because he is the only one working on the economy jobs and the nations needs,
    The rest of these yahoos are more interested in who is the most Christian or the least, what state can take away the most rights of women, what GOP Congressman can top the others with his stupidity (like being opposed to the Girl Scouts) If they would quit being so judgmental toward others views maybe they could do some good. I long for the days of the real Grand Old Party! But since this new one is so bizarre , I will stick with the rational guy that is already in the job!

    February 22, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
  134. Michael in Albuquerque, NM

    Obama will win re-election because he has no competition. Combine that with his success Wall Street, Healthcare and the War on Terror. He has a bright future ahead, as far as the election goes.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
  135. Quincy, North Carolina

    Jack with the Republicans talking about everything else, but the economy. Yes he could win!

    February 22, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
  136. ike

    I hope he can't win, the underlying causes of this countries economic problems need to be addressed and at best all Obama, Romney, Gingrich and probably Santorum are going to do is put a band-aid on it and kick the can further down the road.... The foundation of the US economy as it stands is threatening to invade any oil rich nation that refuses US Dollars as payment for oil, and this is not a sound foundation for an economy.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:31 pm |
  137. LA Dan

    everybody (except obama i guess) should have known that January unemployment numbers would be lower due to retail companies still needing holiday help to handle exchanges , returns , restocking etc; but now that companies have caught up they are no longer needed.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:35 pm |
  138. Lisa

    I certainly hope not Jack. The economy is dismal, gas prices on the rise again. I have not been bamboozled by Mr. Obama. like most people. He has his share of crony capitalism in his White House. Instead of Yes we Can? It should be Why would we want to? Very disappointing to me.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:35 pm |
  139. Sharon - Seattle

    Whatever "October Surprise" The GOP has planned Obama wins hands down compared to the barrel scrapings offered up by the Republicans. Everybody and his brother wants to lecture the President on how to do his job, but only a self flagellating Opus Dei Catholic, a dead Jew baptizing Mormon, a Ayn Randian atheist or a man who changes religion as often as he changes wives want to take the job. God help us. Reverend Wright looks downright mild..

    February 22, 2012 at 5:36 pm |
  140. Harry, Colorado

    This is kind of a loaded question Jack!

    Since unemployment numbers are fudged by the govt and the media has no interest in calling out the fudged numbers reported by the govt, the matter concerning Obama's re-election based on a false paradigm that is reinforced by people (media) using the false paradigm as a matter of fact is in fact, misleading the public with purpose and intent, how do feel about that Jack?

    February 22, 2012 at 5:37 pm |
  141. Carol P. Stevens

    Jack, I am so sick and tired of people always looking for the worst news to report...or suggest, when.we are beginning to feel hopeful that the economy is turning around. It seems that the news has to "bleed so it will lead" rather than allow us to celebrate the renewed hope and surge in confidence. Must we always project the negative? If I want to hear that, I can just watch Fox News. Please focus on the good news for a change! We all need to hear that. Carol Stevens, Greensboro, NC.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:39 pm |
  142. Noah Tucson, AZ

    Luckily for Obama the GOP cannot put forward any candidates with enough political intelligence to be viable. The man killed Bin Laden, the GOP competition cannot go one week without pooping on themselves.

    The real question is, will generations of Americans ever again have an opportunity to vote for a POTUS they can really feel confident in? It seemed unlikely prior to the "citizens united" supreme court ruling and now it seems nearly impossible.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:39 pm |
  143. Ben New Jersey

    With Romney slowly losing popularity and Santorum preaching his radical conservative views, is there really any other sane option?

    February 22, 2012 at 5:39 pm |
  144. Quincy, North Carolina

    Jack, Republicans can not even choose a front runner! They first have to bring their party together, which not is happening! Republicans are not even thinking about the general election, their gold is to just win states. So, yes President Obama can win!

    February 22, 2012 at 5:39 pm |
  145. SomaTheBlueMoon

    Jack, obama has proven his military decision making is solid and with hillary's deft hand at sec of st there is no way we will elect one of these bafoons running on the right to not only bomb away any country b4 talking about it but to reinstate the failed economic policies of bush jr.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
  146. Mike USA

    Sure he can, because people seem oblivious to the bad situation our country is in and continues to fall deeper into. Unemployment is a symptom of the greater problem of an ever-growing government that funds more and more welfare programs and endless war campaigns by printing or borrowing more money. To be fair, none of the establishment canidates for the Republican party will get us out of this mess, either. I think you know where I'm going with this – I urge everyone to take a serious look at Ron Paul and what he wants to do to get us back on track. The bottom is going to drop out if we keep the current pace we are on, so what does it matter who the president is when it happens?

    February 22, 2012 at 5:41 pm |
  147. Ken in MD

    If he runs against Romney, probably. If he runs against Santorum, definitely. These guys are just scary. One can't decide what his decision should be, the other thinks we should run our country based on extreme religious beliefs. Think Iran, but Christian instead of Muslim.

    February 22, 2012 at 5:41 pm |