Well, there's no way to sugar-coat 80,000 jobs, so I won't even try. This is a very bad number for Obama. And lest we lose perspective, it's a bad number for the country and the people. About 100,000 keeps pace with population growth and it'd take 200,000 to get unemployment down to a reasonable level in a reasonable time frame.
I'm writing a column for posting tomorrow about the politics of all this, so you'll have to wait until then for that. In the meantime, the only actual positive I can see here is that the public sector lost only 4,000 jobs, much better than recent months, so maybe that's finally levelling off.
About the only positive political spin that can be put on this, and I admit it's a perverse sort of spin, is that as a result of three lame months in a row, expectations are now so low that by the fall, anything in six digits will come to be seen as a slight political plus for Obama, but as I say that's pretty cold comfort. Meanwhile, let's watch Bernanke. The inflation rate right now is 1.7 percent, below the 2 percent target, meaning he is supposed to have room to do something about this. The June inflation number comes out on July 17.
So, conservatives, this thread's for you. If ADP had been right and the number had been 175,000, I and the folks on my side would be crowing. So, your turn.