***UPDATE: By some miracle, something changed and now we’re being told this the BLS intends to release the numbers Friday as scheduled:
“The employees at the Bureau of Labor Statistics are working hard to ensure the timely release of employment data on Friday, November 2,” Fillichio said. “It is our intention that Friday will be business as usual regarding the October Employment Situation Report.”
This morning on a campaign conference call, Obama chief strategist David Axelrod pre-spun the release of the upcoming Friday jobs report. According to some reports, Axelrod predicted the numbers would not give Romney a boost. There was also a prediction released by a major pollster today that predicted a bad jobs report could be a game-changer and tip the race to Romney decisively. And then what happened…? Well, lo and behold, the U.S. Labor Department releases a statement stating the hurricane might delay the release of the jobs report:
The U.S. Labor Department on Monday said it hasn’t made a decision yet on whether to delay Friday’s October jobs report, the final reading on the labor market before next week’s federal elections.
A Labor official said the agency will assess the schedule for all its data releases this week when the “weather emergency” is over.
This would likely be an unprecedented move on the Bureau of Labor Statistic’s part and is only more outrageous in the wake of an artificially low jobless claims report released earlier this month that was missing tens of thousands of jobless claims from California, one of the most populous states in the country.
That’s correct: just a few weeks before a presidential election, Obama enjoyed headlines he had not earned, claiming that weekly unemployment claims plunged to a four year-low. Except that report was based on wildly incomplete information. Moreover, upon the release of that report, the BLS did not inform the public that the entire state of California was missing.
The BLS also raised suspicions after a September report was released showing a counter-intuitive drop in the unemployment rate that would only be possible if 800,000 jobs had been created in a single month. That same report showed that the number of jobs created was about 700,000 short of that.
Not releasing October’s unemployment numbers just a few days before a presidential election would be absolutely outrageous and only further erode trust in our public institutions.
It also reeks of desperation.
Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC