The unemployment rate is now 8.1 percent, marking 43 months straight that it has stayed at 8 percent or above. At least 12.5 million Americans are out of work. Yet President Obama has been trying to convince people that he’s a job-creating President.

Have 4.5 million new jobs been created under President Obama, as several speakers in Charlotte have claimed this week?

A fact check shows that under President Obama, the U.S. economy has created a net 415,000 private-sector jobs—less than 0.2 percent of the 155 million-member American workforce. But even that statistic does not tell the full story, since the workforce itself has shrunk dramatically in size since Obama took office. Labor force participation is at 63.5 percent, its lowest level since 1981. In other words, a large chunk of Americans have simply given up looking for work. A significant number are collecting disability insurance instead, according to new research from Heritage’s James Sherk.

In fact, the share of the adult population with jobs has remained flat for the past two years. The only reason the unemployment rate edged down slightly in August was that fewer people looked for work and thus no longer count as unemployed. The percentage of people participating in the labor force dropped by 0.2 percent—the same amount the unemployment rate dropped. As Sherk has explained, we are in the slowest recovery in 70 years, and job creation has not recovered since the recession began in 2007.

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