2016 Presidential Race & Politics of the Economy

May 1, 2015

Fmr. Rep. National Committee head, Ed Gillespie and Ali Velshi spar over jobs, wages and labor force participation rates


2016 Presidential Race & Politics of the Economy

The most important measure of the economy remains the job market and we've had 54 straight months of job creation under President Obama. When we get April's numbers they'll include another number that's over-rated but still worth following, the unemployment rate, which currently stands at 5.5 percent. Finally, keep track of something that's important but misunderstood: the labor force participation rate. It's the percentage of the population age 16 and over that either has a job or is actively looking for a job. And it's at the lowest level in a generation. Earlier in April, Ali Velshi talked about this topic with the former head of the Republican National Committee. Ed Gillespie is a shrewd political operative who has helped elect Republican candidates nationwide. Last year, he ran for Virginia's seat in the U.S. Senate and lost by a narrow margin. In a meeting at the Milken Global Conference in Los Angeles where business leaders and policy makers gather to schmooze and talk big ideas jobs, wages and labor force participation became points of contention between them. It started with a question Ali Velshi asked him about what the Republican message to voters will be in 2016. Ed Gillespie said it would be President Obama's economic record. Take a listen.


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