Hurricane Sandy and the election

  • Article by: FRANK BRUNI , New York Times
  • Updated: October 30, 2012 - 8:18 PM

As Sandy churned, so did the political panic. How the storm could impact presidential politics.

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gandalf48Oct. 30, 12 1:42 PM

The only weather issue I'm worried about impacting the election are the job numbers that are supposed to appear on Friday...I'm concerned that the Obama administration will "delay" the numbers until after the election. After very unusual numbers from last month's job report (due to what I believe is a statistical anomaly) it's quite possible the numbers on Friday would correct those anomalies and show a drastic increase in the unemployment rate...unless the administration hides them for a few more days.

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mcleanmOct. 30, 12 2:10 PM

Was it really an anomoly??? I thought that California did not get all of their numbers in....

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traderbillOct. 30, 12 3:51 PM

Conspiracy theory at work when the issue is how will a Romney administration handle a disaster like this? I would feel more comfortable if Chris Christy was the GOP candidate. He has both compassion and common sense. Two things sadly lacking in politics today. Neither of the preceding letters addresses the subject of the article.

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gandalf48Oct. 30, 12 3:53 PM

mcleanm - [Was it really an anomoly??? I thought that California did not get all of their numbers in....] *** Just take a look at the BLS numbers...they're available for everyone to see. There is no mention in the jobs report of California numbers not being in, I'm not sure why that would even matter because not counted numbers wouldn't count for or against the current data set. Just look at these numbers for yourself, the household survey showed 800,000+ jobs created while the employer survey showed only 114,000 jobs created; those numbers don't match up. Even the BLS report says that the household surveys from the previous months showed very little change and then suddenly there's one month with 800,000+ jobs created while the other survey showed only 114,000 jobs created. BTW, the employer survey is much more reliable since a larger percentage of the total group is measured/counted in that survey. Remember that the actual unemployment rate is based on the household survey while the total number of jobs created is taken from the employer survey. Based on all that information I would make the educated determination that last month's household survey was a statistical anomaly (because it didn't match up with the employer survey or the previous month trends in either survey). The only way to know for sure is to see the new job numbers on Friday...which would be a real tragedy to have the jobs report delayed until after the election "due to the weather".

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braxozOct. 30, 12 5:39 PM

I wonder how Romney's "privatized FEMA" would have handled the storm. Or, if each state had it's own "FEMA" (SEMA?)how they would co-ordinate with each other.

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drichmnOct. 30, 12 7:13 PM

"I'm concerned that the Obama administration will "delay" the numbers until after the election" .... He's not involved in any way with the compilation or release of the numbers.

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drichmnOct. 30, 12 7:24 PM

"the household survey showed 800,000+ jobs created while the employer survey showed only 114,000 jobs created; those numbers don't match up. Even the BLS report says that the household surveys from the previous months showed very little change " ... the jobs numbers for the previous month were revised upwards. And a few weeks prior to that the jobs numbers for the entire last year were revised upwards. There were more jobs created last year than previously thought so the unemployment figure was probably artificially high as well. It's nuts to keep implying that the BLS is manipulating the figures. And btw, the BLS already said that their numbers won't be delayed so why keep pushing that rw talking point?

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pinky1933Oct. 30, 12 9:49 PM

gandalf, it would be a fantastic occurrence for the BLS to delay, at the request of the WH and/or based on politics. moreover, the BLS has a time-proven "firewall" between them and ANY external influence/interests. to suggest otherwise is to have an ill-informed understanding of the BLS and its statutory obligations. finally, if - IF there is any delay, it will be at the sole discretion of the BLS commissioner, and it would be for very good reasons (i.e. delays related to "Sandy"). would you rather they do a "rush" job and post inaccurate data? good grief!

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gandalf48Oct. 30, 1210:28 PM

Well, I'll expect an apology from everyone who doubts me if unemployment increases to 8.0% or higher on Friday. Also, if the jobs report is delayed and does not appear on Friday I would expect an apology once again. The revised numbers were less than 100,000 each one of those months...people should be able to do the simple math and realize that the household survey number of 873,000 jobs created "following 3 months of little change" (quote directly from the BLS jobs report) compared with the establishment survey data which showed 114,000 jobs created (remember this is the more reliable survey) does not make sense. Based on all the information the household survey appears to be a statistical anomaly...which is why the next job report is so important. Watch for Friday's numbers and be ready for me to say "I told you so"!

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crystalbayOct. 30, 1210:57 PM

"Conspiracy theory at work when the issue is how will a Romney administration handle a disaster like this? "..................Romney's already stated his strong feelings about FEMA being "immoral" and having each state handle its own disasters - or, worse, even privatize such services!! Add to the mix, Ryan's plan to gut programs like FEMA by up to 62%, and you have a the makings of a complete catastrophe for any region suffering a major weather event. What we do know beyond a doubt is that our present commander in chief is doing a stellar job of managing this ongoing crisis. I'm waiting for the right wing's penchant for conspiracy theories to attribute this untimely (for Romney) disaster to Obama. He must have caused it just to make himself look presidential?!

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