From NBC's Mark Murray
Despite the news that the unemployment rate dropped, Republicans are issuing statements seizing on the 247,000 jobs lost in July -- the lowest job decline lost since Aug. 2008.
In short, Republicans are doubling down that the jobs report is an aberration -- risking looking out of touch if the economy does start picking up steam.
Here's RNC Chairman Michael Steele: "In the month of July alone 247,000 Americans lost their jobs, which means more than 2.8 million Americans have lost their jobs since the president took office. The president said his stimulus bill would keep unemployment from rising higher than 8 percent. It hasn't."
Video: The number of people filing new claims for unemployment benefits dropped last week by 38,000, to 550,000. NBC's Brian Williams reports.
Here's the National Republican Congressional Committee: "False Promises Exposed: High Unemployment Numbers Persist As Democrats Push Big-Spending Agenda."
Here's the National Republican Senatorial Committee: "As Harry Reid and President Obama attempt to cast today's unemployment numbers as a victory for the Democrats, the fact remains that our country's deficit has skyrocketed under this Administration and hundreds of thousands of Americans still lost their jobs during the month of July."
And here is House Minority Leader John Boehner: "Nearly six months ago, the Administration promised its 'stimulus' would provide a 'jolt' to our economy, create jobs immediately, and hold unemployment below eight percent. Yet more than two million Americans have lost their jobs since the 'stimulus' became law. Every American has the right to ask 'Where are the jobs, Mr. President?'"
Then again, the economy lost 3.1 million jobs in George W. Bush's final year in office.