The national unemployment rate stands at 8.3%. It has been above 8% for nearly three-and-a-half years. For African-Americans, the jobs picture is even worse with 14.4% unemployment.
When asked, "If that number goes up or down, will that affect for whom you will vote for president?” Manya Petty said, “That's a tough question." Petty worked in the insurance industry in Des Moines for 14 years before she was laid off two years ago. She decided to pursue a college degree, and will graduate in December.
Petty is one of hundreds of people who attended the NAACP Job Fair at Welmark’s headquarters in downtown Des Moines, Thursday. Petty, along with many others, have lost some faith that any person can affect job policy change in the role of president. Patty Consolver doesn’t think the election will be what ultimately affects the unemployment rate. "No. I don't. I think it's going to take the public itself and the uproar that you've been seeing."
Judy Ellis works for a locally owned staffing firm. She said that President Obama and Mitt Romney should quit taking each other to task over job creation policies. "I think they need to talk to the unemployed,” she said. Ellis added that she would tell the candidates that America’s job problems stem directly from overseas outsourcing and domestic consolidation. Ellis said, "I want (the candidates) to understand that there are people out there that want to work, but they can't."
Instead of worrying about the November election, Petty is focused on December. That’s when she will earn a new college degree. She beamed, “I'm very excited.