It's time for the State of the Union address, which means the president is pivoting back to jobs once more. It's an annual game where President Obama pretends to be focused on employment and many in the media pretend to believe him.
Back in 2009, the president promised never to "rest" until the job situation was fixed. Nearly four years later, he's done a lot of resting.
According to The Weekly Standard, Pres. Obama has had 83 vacation days overall and Factcheck.org says he took 26 of those in 2009. That means the president has taken at least 57 vacation days since his vow not to "rest."
On Sept. 15, 2009, Obama spoke to General Motors plant employees in Warren, Ohio, about the "economic crisis." That's when the president made his promise. "But I want you all to know, I will not rest until anybody who's looking for a job can find one -- and I'm not talking about just any job, but good jobs that give every American decent wages and decent benefits and a fair shot at the American Dream," he told an applauding crowd. Obama has made the same promise (either as "I" or "we") since then, but that was the first evidence of his promise.
Dictionary.com gives several definitions for "rest." and one of the more generous of those is "a period or interval of inactivity, repose, solitude, or tranquility." By most definitions, that would include vacation.
But 1,245 days later, including at least 57 days off, millions of Americans are still out of work with unemployment at 7.9 percent, 0.1 percent higher than when he took office.
Now, the White House is deflecting criticism by saying jobs have always mattered. According to the Feb. 11 USA Today, "He will not be 'pivoting' back to the topic, [aides] add." The paper then cited spokesman Jay Carney and told readers "Obama has made jobs and the economy his primary emphasis since he began seeking the presidency in 2007."