President Obama thinks the unemployment rate can break 8% by election day. To achieve this goal, roughly 254,000 jobs need to be added every month until then, according to Matt McDonald, a partner at Hamilton Place Strategies and a veteran of two Presidential campaigns.
The December jobs number released Friday is one step in that direction. Last month 200,000 nonfarm jobs were added and the unemployment rate dropped to 8.5% from 8.6% in November. December was the six-straight month of 100,000+ job gains. This news is very positive for the economy and Obama's re-election campaign. But the reality is that it will be hard for the economy to gain more than 250,000 jobs each month until November.
"This is a high number, beyond what we have seen in recent months," McDonald writes. "Beyond that, the unemployment rate is likely to become sticky in the mid-8 percent range as the participation rate begins to creep back up."
With that said, no president has won re-election with unemployment above 6% since World War II, with the exception of President Regan in 1984, who won despite a jobless rate of 7.2%, reports Bloomberg.
BlackRock's Bob Doll joined The Daily Ticker's Henry Blodget to discuss his predictions for 2012. In the accompanying clip, Doll forecasts the November election will be a landslide for Republicans. He says Republicans will retake the Senate by a narrow margin, retain the House (but lose a few seats) and defeat President Obama.
Doll says Obama's advantages — incumbency and huge campaign coffers — will be outweighed by his disadvantages — a low approval rating and really high unemployment — and he will lose to Mitt Romney, the GOP frontrunner and likely nominee.
"I think the Republicans - if they can unify around Mitt Romney, and that is a big if - can unseat President Obama," says Doll. "I think it is the Republicans to lose."
As Doll acknowledges, that unity may be hard to come by since Republican voters have not yet coalesced around Romney. But, Doll thinks it is possible. The Republican party will support him "not because they like Mitt Romney but because they don't like President Obama."
Tell us what you think! Do you agree with Doll that the Republicans will sweep the entire election be running the table in 2013?