- The Washington Times - Friday, March 10, 2017

President Trump, who as a candidate often criticized the government’s jobs’ reports during the Obama administration as “phony,” became a believer on Friday.

The Labor Department, now part of the Trump administration, reported Friday that employers added 235,000 jobs in Mr. Trump’s first full month in office, and the unemployment rate dropped slightly to 4.7 percent.

A grinning White House press secretary Sean Spicer said he specifically asked the president Friday morning if he believed the new jobs report.

“They may have been phony in the past, but it’s very real now,” Mr. Trump told his spokesman.

After the New Hampshire Republican primary last year, Mr. Trump said, “Don’t believe those phony numbers when you hear 4.9 and 5 percent unemployment. The number’s probably 28, 29, as high as 35. In fact, I even heard recently 42 percent.”

Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez said the strong hiring numbers in February were due to the policies of the previous administration.

“Thanks, Obama!” he said.

Mr. Spicer said Mr. Trump’s actions clearly are having an impact with employers.

Asked at the daily press briefing whether Mr. Trump tweeted prematurely about the positive jobs report, Mr. Spicer retorted to a journalist, “Don’t make me make the podium move.”

It was a reference to “Saturday Night Live,” where Melissa McCarthy portrays Mr. Spicer in command of a mobile podium that he plows into the assembled reporters when annoyed.

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