News / USA

US Democrats Convene Amid High Unemployment

US Democrats Convene Amid High Unemploymenti
|| 0:00:00
X
Carolyn Presutti
September 04, 2012
The Democratic National Convention officially begins Tuesday in the southern U.S. state of North Carolina. Monday was a holiday in the US -- Labor Day -- a time to celebrate jobs and working people. But unemployment in America has remained high throughout the Obama administration, and public opinion polls show the issue is a drag on his candidacy. VOA's Carolyn Presutti is in Charlotte.
TEXT SIZE - +
— The Democratic National Convention officially begins Tuesday in the southern U.S. state of North Carolina. Monday was a holiday in the U.S. - Labor Day - a time to celebrate jobs and working people. But unemployment in America has remained high throughout the Obama administration, and public opinion polls show the issue is a drag on his candidacy.

The day before the convention, Democrats highlighted this state, which they need to win in November, and celebrated just being Democrats.

Democrats have come to town on Labor Day, as North Carolina’s unemployment rate hovers well above the rest of the country - a rate that remains high nationally at more than eight percent. Many here blame big corporations.

"They are taking companies that were here, factories that were here and moving them to Mexico. Moving them to India. Doing things like that, basically destroying those middle class jobs," said James Hoffa, Jr., the head of the largest labor union in the United States.

The point people here make is that rightward leaning conservative Republicans got the country into economic trouble.

"President Barack, he inherits an 800,000-a-month job loss - 3.5 million job loss - gushing out of the bottom of our economy. That hemorrhaging of our economy stopped," said civil rights leader Jesse Jackson.

"I've been downsized about five times in the last five years," said Reginald Purcell, a victim of the economy.

He has steady work this week as a floral designer only because the convention is in town. But he adds he's still voting for President Obama.

"I really think we are at the cusp of the economy turning around," he said.

The Republican nominee for president, Mitt Romney, and his running mate Paul Ryan blame Democrats, even harkening back to a president of 30 years ago. Paul Ryan campaigned in North Carolina Monday.

"Every president since the Great Depression who asked Americans to send them into a second term could say that you're better off today than you were four years ago except for Jimmy Carter and for President Barack Obama," he said.

Democrats and the president will spend three days making their case.

This empty arena fills with 6,000 delegates and thousands of volunteers and supporters each day the convention gavels in. The main speeches air on TV networks. And, there are 4,000 Democratic parties taking place across the country, watching what happens here at the Democratic National Convention.

Former U.S. Secretary of State Albright Addresses Obama's Foreign Policy:

Former Secretary of State Albright Addresses Obama's Foreign Policyi
|| 0:00:00
X
Carolyn Presutti
September 04, 2012
Former Secretary of State Madeline Albright was the first female to hold the position of Secretary of State. VOA's Carolyn Presutti caught up with her at the Democratic National Convention.

Carolyn Presutti

Carolyn Presutti is an award-winning television reporter who works out of VOA’s Washington headquarters.  She has won an Emmy, many Associated Press awards, and a Clarion for her coverage of Haiti,  national politics, the southern economy, and the 9/11 bombing anniversary.  In 2013, Carolyn aired exclusive stories on the Syrian medical crisis and the Asiana plane crash, and was VOA’s chief reporter from the Boston Marathon bombing.

You May Like

Photogallery Pope's Easter Prayer: Peace in Ukraine, Syria

Pontiff also calls for end to terrorist acts in Nigeria, violence in Iraq, and success in peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians More

Abdullah Holds Lead in Afghan Presidential Election

Country's Election Commission says that with half of the ballots counted, former FM remains in the lead with 44 percent of the vote More

Russia-Ukraine Crisis Could Trigger Cyber War

As tensions between Kyiv and Moscow escalate, so too has frequency of online attacks targeting government, news and financial sites More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politicsi
X
Michael Eckels
April 19, 2014
There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politics

There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid