NAACP Chief: Unemployment Worse for Blacks Under Obama

Monday, 28 Jan 2013 05:32 PM

By Christiana Lilly

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Ben Jealous, CEO and president of the NAACP, said on Sunday that the unemployment rate for blacks is worse now than when President Barack Obama first took office.

“Right now when you look at joblessness in this country – the country is pretty much back to where it was when this president started. White people in this country are doing a bit better. Black folks are doing a full point worse,” Jealous said during MSNBC’s Meet the Press.

When Obama took office, the unemployment rate for blacks was 12.7 percent, according to In December, it was 14 percent. The national unemployment rate is 8 percent.

The worst month for black unemployment was 16.7 percent in September 2011, the Washington Times reports, the worst it has ever been since 1983.

“The big issues of this day also include marriage equality, they include comprehensive immigration reform, they include making sure that we lift all boats,” Jealous said. ”With this president having said to us we need to invest in strategies that lifts all boats, now that some boats are clearly stuck, the question is will Congress join him in getting those boats unstuck too?”

Jealous was joined by Ted Koppel, Bob Woodward, Sen. Jim DeMint and Andrea Mitchell to discuss Obama’s second term, the future of the Republican Party and other topics.

In a meeting Friday, social rights groups such as the NAACP, the National Urban League and the National Action Network worked on a “black agenda” for Obama, including calling for him to mention an urban jobs plan in his State of the Union address, reports.

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