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Jobs number could spell bad news for Obama economic turnaround

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Today's newly released December jobs report reveals that only 74,000 jobs were created last month, a number that falls significantly short of the 200,000 new jobs that were anticipated.

“That’s a horrific number,” said MSNBC host Joe Scarborough, reacting to the release on live television.

ALSO: Does Florida need a Lt. Governor?

Democrats had hoped for continued strong jobs growth with key mid-term elections on the horizon. However, the new jobs number is the lowest monthly increase since January of 2011 and is especially surprising as December traditionally boasts a robust report powered by holiday hiring.

America's national unemployment rate fell from 7% to 6.7%, but that big move came primarily as larger and larger numbers of people drop out of the work force.

"A gain of only 74,000 new jobs in December stands in contrast to the strengthening posted in other major economic data, suggesting the dip in hiring might prove temporary," noted a release from The Conference Board, an economic think tank that monitors key indicators.

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