Governor erroneously blames recalls, protests, for a different year of slow growthSeriously, Gov. Walker, I JUST wrote about this.
In a statement to Chicago journalists earlier today -- because heaven forbid the governor of Wisconsin actually speak on the subject in Wisconsin -- Gov. Scott Walker took time out of his schedule to explain, once again, the reason that jobs were so slow in the state had nothing to do with him or his policies:
Walker commented on a report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics that showed Wisconsin added private-sector jobs at a 1.1% pace in the 12-month period from March 2012 to March 2013, while the U.S. added jobs at a 2.0% rate.Emphases added.
“These numbers are March to March, and in March of last year, we were still three months out from the recall election,” Walker said at a press conference in Chicago, where he appeared at an economic forum. “And as I point out repeatedly, employers in the state were basically frozen until they knew what would happen in that election and the uncertainty it caused.”
“There’s no doubt in our first two years, because of the protests, the recalls, that they had an impact early on. Much as there is concern nationally about the impact of Obamacare and the impact it has on employers, they just wonder with uncertainty.”
I’ve previously written on the effect on jobs that the recalls had -- or rather, didn’t have. There’s no substantial data to show that the recalls had negative effects on job creation.
But just yesterday, I also pointed out data that showed the governor’s job record has failed, and it has nothing to do with recalls or his predecessor.
In fact, taking a look at the graph above, the recalls and the protests can hardly be blamed for anything tumultuous in Wisconsin, with regards to job growth.
The protests began in February of 2011 and ended later that spring. From March 2011 to March 2012, Wisconsin grew 39,756 jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Remember that, during that time, there was the tail end of the protests, State Senate recalls, the petition drive for the recall of the governor, and part of the gubernatorial recall campaign. That’s a heckuva-lot-of-stuff going on -- and despite it all, the state saw nearly 40,000 jobs gained.
Taking a look at the following year -- from March 2012 to March 2013, the year Gov. Walker was responding to reporters about -- we see a significantly large drop in jobs, from nearly 40,000 to just barely 24,000.
Yet, what Walker complains about in those job numbers were three months of recall campaigning...which is much less "uncertainty" than the twelve months of protests, recalls, and campaigning that occurred prior.
What’s more, Walker said himself that jobs in the state would grow following the recall election:
A day after becoming the country's first governor to win a recall election, a triumphant Scott Walker told his cabinet Wednesday to put their energy into creating jobs and said he was taking steps to improve bipartisanship.Emphasis added.
"We're going to spend the remainder of this term focused like a laser beam on creating jobs," he said to the cabinet.
Walker said he expects employers to start hiring in the next several weeks, now that they know the changes he has pursued in state policies over the past 17 months will not be sidelined by a different administration.
Walker didn’t say the effects of the recall would linger for months or even years -- he said employers would start hiring within weeks of his recall victory.
Gov. Walker wants to blame everything he can so that his performance on job creation doesn’t look so bad. Yet Walker has no one to blame but himself. The year that the senatorial recalls and protests occurred (with most of the campaigning for the gubernatorial recall occurring as well) saw more job growth than the year where only three months of recalls happened.
Walker thinks that three months of “uncertainty” is more burdensome on job creation than 12 months of the same political circumstances. Such thinking shows exactly why he can’t be trusted to create the conditions needed to grow jobs in the state.