Aug. 20, 2014 SIGN IN | REGISTER

Spokesman: No Darrell Issa Hearing on Unemployment Numbers

Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo

A spokesman for House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) said he is not planning a hearing on recently issued unemployment numbers that showed improvement to the economy.

“The Oversight Committee has not announced or decided to hold hearings on the September unemployment report,” spokesman Frederick Hill said.

The Fox News Business Network reported that Issa “plans to hold hearings on unemployment numbers released Friday,” citing an interview host Greta Van Susteren did with Issa on Wednesday after a hearing on the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

On camera, Issa criticized the Bureau of Labor Statistics, saying, “The way it is being done with the constant revisions, significant revisions, tells us that it is not as exact [a] science as it needs to be and there’s got to be a better way to get those numbers or don’t put them out if they’re going to be wrong by as much as half a point.”

A host also read from a quote of Issa saying he wants to “work every day through November and December” on the issue and that it is something his panel has “important jurisdiction over.”

Hill said “at no point did he say he has made plans to convene a hearing on this subject.”

“While Chairman Issa, in response to a question asked yesterday, did state that he believes there are legitimate questions about the Department of Labor’s method for calculating unemployment, the Oversight Committee has not announced or decided to hold hearings on the September unemployment report. Chairman Issa specifically pointed to the frequent revisions that the Department of Labor often makes to its own numbers in questioning whether more can be done to ensure that they accurately reflect the state of our nation’s job market. At no point did he say he has made plans to convene a hearing on this subject,” Hill said.

In the wake of last week’s unemployment report, which showed that the rate had dipped to 7.8 percent, led some Republicans to question the legitimacy of the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ methodology.

Rep. Paul Broun (R-Ga.), for instance, released a statement that said, “Today’s jobs report raises questions for me, and frankly it should be raising eyebrows for people across the country. While I wish we were actually seeing this kind of growth, the self-reported numbers are a serious departure from both our economic trends and our economic reality.”

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