Mitt Romney Promises to Have Almost No Effect on the Unemployment Rate

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"I'll lower unemployment by thiiis much." Photo: SAUL LOEB/Getty

Earlier this month, Mitt Romney raised eyebrows when he claimed that even a 4 percent unemployment rate, which was last achieved all the way back in 2000, would not be "cause for celebration." Since then, Romney has apparently reconsidered setting such an impossibly high bar for himself, because today he told Time's Mark Halperin:

"Over a period of four years, by virtue of the policies that we put in place, we get the unemployment rate down to 6 percent and perhaps a little lower." 

Now that's a more reasonable projection. However, it's also pretty much what is expected to happen whether or not Mitt Romney and his lifetime of experience in the private sector ever make it to the White House, as First Read points out

The Congressional Budget Office, in its baseline projection of the economic and budget outlook, said it expects the unemployment rate to drop to around 6 percent naturally at some point in 2016.

Assuming the CBO's forecast is accurate, Romney's projections would seem to somewhat undercut the central premise of his candidacy — namely, that only he, and not President Obama, knows how to get America back to work. Now he's telling us that it won't make much of a difference who America chooses, which isn't the most impressive pitch in the world. It's kind of like proposing to your girlfriend with, "If you marry me, I promise that I will make you just as happy as most other guys could, and definitely not less happy."