The U.S. Labor Department stats for the second week of May belie a jobless reality no glittering State Dinner gala can erase. Half a million more citizens filed first-time unemployment claims. Meanwhile young adults struggle to find even their first jobs.

The number of people filing new claims for unemployment benefits unexpectedly rose last week by the largest amount in three months. The big surge was a setback to hopes that layoffs were declining.

The Labor Department says that applications for unemployment benefits rose to 471,000 last week, up by 25,000 from the previous week. It was the first increase in five weeks and the biggest jump since a gain
 of 40,000 in February.

Last week Associated Press reported . . . that millions of U.S. jobs are likely “gone for good.” Job losses are not merely in manufacturing, the backbone work that grew America. Gone also are computer IT positions, publishing staff jobs, creative and engineering design opportunities, and white-collar management slots.

As a mom of unemployed young adults, I join many parental caregivers praying for kids who apply repeatedly for jobs, entry-level or part time. Executives fight for such work. In my town a six-figure 
executive, lost her job, lost her home, and found herself competing with eight others for a receptionist post! Tragically many towns echo this tale with no happily ever after conclusion in sight

These jobless competitors do not begrudge the retired seniors taking entry-level jobs. Retirement imploded in an economy that cracked whatever stock market nest eggs they held.

But the unemployed may begrudge the monarch trappings of gilt galas. Today the gourmet leftovers are in the fridge, the tables, chairs and tent are off the White House Lawn. Will the governing guests now get to work and free businesses to let citizens net some new jobs? Or will they let their subjects eat redistributed cake?

Read the statistics. Many voters still can’t find work. But they still can vote.