Analyzing Obama's DNC speech, latest jobs report

Obama applauds crowd
Democratic presidential candidate, U.S. President Barack Obama speaks on stage to accept the nomination for president during the final day of the Democratic National Convention at Time Warner Cable Arena on September 6, 2012 in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Less than 12 hours after President Barack Obama's acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention Thursday, talk had moved on to the morning's job report which showed weak numbers that dampened Obama's momentum after the convention.

U.S. employers added 96,000 jobs last month and the unemployment rate fell to 8.1 percent from 8.3 percent in July. But that was only because more people gave up looking for jobs. People who are out of work are counted as unemployed only if they're looking for a job.

"We have a really bad job situation and it's getting worse, and it's been getting worse for over a year," said Heidi Moore, New York bureau chief for Marketplace, on The Daily Circuit Friday. "So the big story of this report is that it tells us that the labor force is down."

The country's labor force is at a 31-year low, Moore said. But the problems are much bigger than our country's workforce, she added.

"The problems that we're dealing with are not just the weakness of the U.S. economy, but the fact that Europe itself is in really deep trouble," Moore said. "People are really worried about the exit of Greece; next week, it's been reported that Spain is going to ask for another bailout. U.S. companies aren't just U.S. companies. They do business in Europe. And if they lose money in Europe that means they're going to hire fewer people here in the U.S. and overseas, and it becomes a real global problem."

For Obama, the job numbers have potential, said Jason Johnson, associate professor of political science and communication at Hiram College.

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"From a campaign strategy standpoint, this is actually good jobs news," he said. "Whenever the percentage goes down, you can push that. You can say we had a drop in the unemployment rate. Now, when we dig into the numbers, of course it's not that nice. But campaigns are about the general feeling and general trends instead of specifics."

For some voters, the numbers might not be good enough. Peggy, a caller from Little Falls, Minn., said she calls herself an independent voter. She voted for Obama in 2008, but said she won't be voting for him again.

"I voted for President Obama because I thought he could bring some interesting change, and I genuinely liked him and liked his argument as to why he thought he could do something for us," she said. "What has happened in reality is that very little has happened. I do think part of that is the majority in Congress. So I am 100 percent convinced that the best thing for me to do this time would be to vote for Mitt Romney... The deciding factor for me is that he will have a Congress who will most likely be able to create some activity and cause some things to actually happen."

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.