Last week’s jobs report could spur further anxiety for President Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign, as the President’s core constituencies continue to struggle with high unemployment. The Labor Department reported dismal jobs numbers for August, with unemployment continuing to hover around 9 percent — a grave concern for Obama’s approval ratings. Young workers, aged 18 to 24, are now burdened with 16.4 percent unemployment, while many more are underemployed. Such affliction for America’s youth could prove fatal for Obama’s 2012 presidential aspirations, as he garnered nearly 70 percent of 18 to 29 aged voters in 2008.
Both Republican and Democratic strategists predict that today’s economic conditions, particularly regarding unemployment, will be critical to 2012’s election results. High unemployment for young people could be detrimental to Obama’s campaign, as a bleak economic outlook may stir unfavorable political activism among America’s youth.
Matthew Segal, president of Our Time, a national organization for Americans under 30, suggested that unemployment for young people "exposes our nation’s ongoing neglect of young workers who also face the deepest student loan debt in history." Regardless of the government’s influence on youth employment, the political aftereffects could be critical. Segal adds:
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Photo: Brianna D'Amico, 23, researches jobs at her apartment in Washington, on March 17, 2009. A graduate of Marymount University, D'Amico was let go because of restructuring: AP Images