Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Perry & Bachmann - Job Creators ?
Bachmann said she would be a good job creator because she had helped run her family's business in Minnesota. She said, "We started our own successful small business. We know how to build from scratch, putting capital together and starting a business from scratch and building it up so that we can actually offer jobs to people."
That suggestion is ludicrous on its face. Running a small business, as millions of Americans have done, does not qualify one as an expert in macro-economics and hiring a few workers does not teach anything about job creation on a national level. But she couldn't claim much else because she's done nothing to stimulate jobs since going to Congress. Pawlenty was right when he said Bachmann's record of accomplishments in Congress was non-existent.
Meanwhile, Perry told Iowans, "I happen to think the biggest issue facing this country is that we are facing economic turmoil, and if we don't have a president that doesn't get this country working, we're in trouble. And I've got a track record." Perry is right with that last statement. As governor for the last 10 years he does have a track record. The problem is that it's a record of failure when it comes to jobs.
You'll hear Perry proudly proclaim that Texas has created more jobs than any other state in the last few years. That's true, but not very impressive when you pull back the curtain and look at the facts regarding that job creation.
* Texas is a very large state with a huge population. It has to create more jobs than most other states just to keep the unemployment rate from ballooning out of control.
* The percentage of Texans with jobs has actually gone down during Perry's tenure as governor. The percentage of Texans with jobs under his predecessor, George W. Bush, was 47%. That percentage has fallen to 43.5% under Perry. That is below the national percentage of workers which is 44.7% (so Texas is actually doing worse than the nation as a whole).
* While Texas is supposed to have such a great economy with low unemployment (8.2%), half of the states (25 states) have a lower unemployment rate, including states with Democratic leadership like New York and Massachusetts.
* Massachusetts not only has a lower unemployment rate, but it had significantly better economic growth (4.2%) last year than Texas (2.8%).
* Texas and Mississippi are tied for the highest percentage of hourly workers making at or less than the minimum wage. That rate is 9.5%.
* Texas leads the nation in the number of workers making minimum wage (268,000) or less (282,000).
* The 550,000 hourly workers making minimum wage or less in Texas is about 13% of the entire nation's hourly workers paid that poorly, even though Texas has only 8% of the nation's population.
* The number of hourly workers paid minimum wage or less in Texas is greater than in the populous states of California, Illinois, and Florida combined.
* Those minimum wage jobs come without benefits, contributing to the fact that Texas leads the nation both in the percentage and the number of people without any health insurance coverage.
* Most of the growth in jobs in Texas were not due to anything Perry did, but to the growth in population (which helped create the low-wage service jobs) and the growth of the oil & gas industry. Neither of these can be the impetus for growth on the national level.
To be blunt, Perry was not a job creator as a governor and would not be as president. He is too locked in to the "trickle down" theory. He may, however, be the king of minimum wage & no benefit jobs. Do we as a nation really want that?