One of the major factors that has propelled Texas Governor Rick Perry to the top of the GOP Presidential polls is that his state has created more jobs in the last two years than the rest of the country combined... and all you have to do is listen to him talk for five seconds to hear him take credit for it.
“There is no one gonna be sitting on that stage [in California] who has the record of job creation I have. ... There's one in particular who's created jobs all around the world. While he was the governor of Massachusetts he didn't create many jobs."
While opponents of Perry dissect his claim and point out that he was lucky to govern an energy rich state during the spike in oil prices, his claim that Texas has created more jobs than the rest of the country combined is true.
But as Governor Perry grinds it out on the campaign trail he is unlikely to point out other facts, or inconvenient truths, that shed a different light on the "miracle of Texas."
1) Texas' Unemployment Rate Higher Than GOP Rival's States
Only Newt Gingrich and Herman Cain, both from Georgia, hail from states with a higher unemployment rate than Texas.
Gary Johnson, New Mexico, 6.7%
Michelle Bachmann, Minnesota, 7.2%
Jon Huntsman, Utah, 7.5%
Mitt Romney, Massachusetts, 7.6%
Rick Santorum, Pennsylvania, 7.8%
Ron Paul, Texas, 8.4%
Rick Perry, Texas, 8.4%
Newt Gingrich, Georgia, 10.1%
Herman Cain, Georgia, 10.1%
2) Eight of the Ten Worst States Have GOP Governors
Of the ten states with the worst unemployment rates, only North Carolina and California have Democratic Governors.
Alabama, 10.0%, Republican
Georgia, 10.1%, Republican
North Carolina, 10.1%, Democrat
Mississippi, 10.4%, Republican
Florida, 10.7%, Republican
Rhode Island, 10.8%, Independent (former Republican)
Michigan, 10.9%, Republican
South Carolina, 10.9%, Republican
California, 12.0%, Democrat
Nevada, 12.9%, Republican
While this fact doesn't contradict Perry's claims, it calls attention to the idea that GOP policies in general don't help create jobs.
3) Texas Unemployment Rate Started To Climb The Month Perry Took Office
When Rick Perry was sworn in as the 47th Governor of Texas on December 21, 2000 Texas' unemployment rate was at 4.2%. That is the lowest rate that Texas has seen during Perry's entire governorship.
When Perry's predecessor, George W. Bush took office in January, 1995, unemployment was at 6.0%. It steadily dropped during the five years that Bush was in office, reaching the low of 4.2%. As of today the rate has doubled to 8.4%.
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Politicians from both parties love to take credit for good news and run from the bad news and Rick Perry is no different. Perry has assumed the mantle of being a job creator and the majority of the media has fallen in line.
However, when the entirety of the Texas employment situation is examined, Perry suddenly looks ordinary and average... two adjectives that he can't afford having attached to his name.