Joblessness & Obama’s loss of white votes (August MAN column)
By Phil Kent
Unemployment rose a shocking 9.2 percent in June, translating into 14 million Americans who can’t find jobs along with millions more who are underemployed.
Adding to the malaise is a federal government that is doing little to address the 12 to 15 million illegal aliens stealing jobs in every sector, with teenagers especially hurt. By the way, just 4 percent of these jobs are in agriculture– perhaps the only sector where legal foreign guest workers are needed.
Take heart, though, with some good news that helps American workers.
Over 260,000 businesses are using the online e-verify system for employee identification, and thousands more are voluntarily enrolling every week. This feature allows an employer to log onto the Department of Homeland Security website to ascertain the legal status of a new hire using federal data bases. Louisiana is the latest state to require the mandatory use of e-verify for most businesses, and many of the 15 e-verify states have passed laws establishing stiff fines and jail time for public contractors and private employers who knowingly hire illegal workers.
E-verify is more effective when coupled with another system – a Social Security No-Match Program—that identifies illegal workers who have committed identity fraud or theft. Both these programs can help put millions of Americans back to work soon. Under the No-match program if the Social Security number provided by the would-be employee is bogus or stolen, the illegal worker is arrested and jailed.
Americans want action in light of high unemployment. The Obama “jobs stimulus” spending didn’t work. What few jobs were created were at the expense of the private sector in order to expand government. That why many workers—to be blunt, most white workers— have soured on President Barack Obama. Remember “Joe the Plumber” from the 2008 campaign? He was worried about his wealth being “redistributed” via socialistic policies. His fear came true.
Let’s analyze “the white vote.” In 2008 Obama received substantial votes from mainly two white groups— young people and white women with at least a four-year college education. Figures published in the National Journal provided by Pew Research indicate that Obama’s support has dropped among young white voters, especially since they realize they are now paying higher taxes, higher gas prices, etc. There’s also some erosion among white women and white “independents.”
Obama won’t be able to attain the 43 percent support from white voters he received in 2008. In the 2010 mid-term election— highlighted by revulsion against high tax-and-spend policies, the stimulus bill and Obamacare– just 37 percent of whites backed Democrats in House of Representatives races. Sixty percent supported Republicans– the highest share of the white vote the GOP has received in modern times. Obama’s approval rating among whites, as this is written, hovers at an anemic 38 percent.
With more whites out of jobs, and considering Obama’s vindictive lawsuit against Arizona’s immigration control law and his overall failure to address border security with Mexico, the president’s re-election campaign is crafting an interesting alliance. It mainly consists of big unions, liberal college groups, leftist homosexual activists and radical Latino organizations tasked to pump up his vote. But will this strategy be enough to attain the necessary 270 electoral votes next year? If the white vote goes heavily Republican as in 2010, if enough Jewish voters peel away in states like Florida and Ohio because of the administration’s pro-Muslim tilt, and if unemployment is between 7 and 9 percent by next November, it’s hard to see how Obama can win re-election.