Mike Flynn

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Economy Adds 175k Jobs, Unemployment Up to 6.7%

On Friday, the Labor Department reported the economy gained 175,000 jobs in February. The consensus among economists had been for a 149,000 increase in jobs for the month. The unemployment rate ticked up a notch to 6.7%. Mar 7, 2014 5:33 AM PT

Weak: ADP Jobs Report Misses Expectations

National payroll firm ADP reported Wednesday that just 139,000 private sector jobs were added in February. The number was below economists' forecast of 155,000. ADP also revised downward its estimate of new private sector jobs in January, falling to 127,000 from an initially reported 175,000. The two months showed the least amount of job growth in over a year. Mar 5, 2014 5:37 AM PT

Only One in Three Voters Approve of Dem Sen. Kay Hagan

North Carolina Freshman Senator Kay Hagan is one of the most vulnerable Senators running for reelection this year. Her challenge to winning reelection is evidenced by a new poll from Elon University showing that just one-third of Tarheel voters approve of her job performance. Almost half of voters, 49% disapprove of her job performance. She suffered a net 9 point loss since the last poll in November, the only state politician to lose ground with voters. Mar 3, 2014 9:33 AM PT

Senate Dems to Skip Budget Resolution... Again

In the five years that Obama has been President, the Senate Democrats have produced only one budget resolution. During Obama's presidency, the government has been funded by a series of "continuing resolutions" which simply extend all current government programs, preventing any review or reform. On Friday, Senate Budget Chair Patty Murray (D-WA) said her chamber would again forgo their requirement to produce a budget resolution for next year. It is a political, not a fiscal decision. Mar 1, 2014 5:51 AM PT

4th Quarter GDP Slashed 25%

The Commerce Department announced Friday that its revised estimate of GDP growth in the 4th Quarter was revised down to 2.4% annual growth. Initial estimates had put GDP growth at 3.2%. Economists had expected a downward revision to 2.5%, making Friday's report a disappointment. It is a dramatic drop from the 3rd Quarter estimate of 4.1% growth. Feb 28, 2014 5:35 AM PT

Dem Sinks as FL Special House Election Moves to Toss Up

Democrats have been heavy favorites to capture the seat of the late Rep. Bill Young (R-FL) in a special election on March 11th. Their nominee, Alex Sink, lost a close race for Governor in 2010 and has both high name recognition and a strong fundraising edge. A new poll from the Chamber of Commerce, however, finds the GOP nominee, David Jolly, moving into a slim 2-point lead. Jolly now leads Sink 44-42. Feb 26, 2014 12:12 PM PT

Federalism Doesn't Stop at the Online Poker Table

It seems the good Senator’s support for federalism stops there. Calling it the “wild wild west” of gambling, Heller is promising to introduce legislation to trump states that have legalized online gaming with a federal prohibition. It seems that state laboratories for democracy are good only until they begin to affect the home town industry. Feb 25, 2014 12:00 PM PT

Dems Embrace SuperPacs to Keep Money Edge

One of the more persistent myths of modern politics is that Democrats are swimming against a torrent of money supporting Republicans. In the media narrative, nefarious business and monied interests subvert the democratic process by deploying millions against Democrats progressives. The Supreme Court decision in Citizens United, which reinforced the precedent that money is speech, spawned hand-wringing across the left media. The decision, though, merely leveled the political funding playing ground. Democrats are now publicly embracing the SuperPacs born of the decision; not to catch up with Republicans, but to maintain their funding edge. Feb 23, 2014 9:40 AM PT

WV Dems Exempt Staff from Minimum Wage Hike

Last week, the Democrat controlled House in West Virginia passed legislation raising the state's minimum wage to $8.75 an hour, $1.50 higher than the federal minimum wage. The action is part of a nation-wide effort by Democrats to make a minimum wage increase central to their platform for the midterm elections. The increase didn't effect all workers, though. Democrats exempted many of their own staff from the wage hike. Businesses may have to pay the higher wages, but the legislature will avoid many of the consequences. Feb 22, 2014 10:21 AM PT

Obama Drops Entitlement Reform, Increases Spending

President Obama's FY 2105 budget will drop the one concession he had made to Republicans on entitlement reform. Under pressure from Congressional Democrats, Obama's budget will not contain a proposal called "chained CPI" which changes the calculation of cost-of-living increases for Social Security benefits. While the savings from the change would have been minor, it was seen as an olive branch to Republicans towards a "grand bargain" on the budget. It seems the budget will have to be resolved at the ballot box. Feb 21, 2014 8:07 AM PT

Dem Rep Bera: 'We Have to Be Flexible' on Insurance Co Bailout

Earlier this week, Democrat Rep. Ami Bera was asked on a local Sacramento news channel whether he supported bailing out insurance companies who lost money as a result of the failures of the ObamaCare exchanges. After some qualifying, and not a small amount of hemming, Bera said "we have to be flexible on that." Feb 20, 2014 10:31 AM PT

Miss: Retail Sales Disappoint

The Commerce Department reported Thursday that retail sales unexpectedly fell 0.4% in January. Economists had expected sales to be unchanged from December. The agency also revised December retails sales downward. An initially report 0.2% increase was revised to just a 0.1%. Retail sales constitute a huge percentage of overall economic activity. The disappointing sales number are consistent with other data signaling a slowdown in the economy. Feb 13, 2014 8:06 AM PT

Surrender: GOP to Push 'Clean' Debt Ceiling Increase

Just one day after unveiling a plan to link a lift in the debt ceiling to restoring cuts to military pensions, House Speaker John Boehner announced on Tuesday that he would push a "clean" debt ceiling increase. Under a "clean" bill, the nation's debt ceiling would increase without any corresponding spending cuts or policy changes. Feb 11, 2014 7:17 AM PT

Black Teen Unemployment Jumps to 38%

The black teen unemployment rate spiked to 38% in January. The dramatic increase represented almost a 10% increase over December's 35.5% unemployment rate. Overall, the teen unemployment rate for all races was 21%, a modest increase from December. Feb 7, 2014 8:40 AM PT

Boehner: Build Keystone for Job Growth

House Speaker John Boehner reacted quickly to the weak jobs report on Friday, criticizing the Administration for what he called "the worst jobs recovery in history." Boehner urged Obama to remove obstacles to job-creating efforts, specifically construction of the Keystone pipeline. Feb 7, 2014 6:18 AM PT

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