By Gary P Jackson
At the Republican debate Wednesday night Rick Perry and Mitt Romney went at it over who was better at job creation. Both claimed the prize.
Perry was right, Romney’s record on job creation as governor was abysmal. We’ve written numerous times about this. Fact is, after Romney’s first year in office, Massachusetts was dead last, 50 out of 50 in creating jobs.
That said, Romney makes one hell of a great point.
Texas is a strong state, always has been. We have zero income tax. [Though many claim the business tax Perry created amounts to one .. and is unconstitutional …. Perry is being sued over this]
We have a Republican legislature, a Republican Supreme Court. We are a Right-to-Work state, and have vast resources including oil and natural gas. We also have a strong manufacturing segment.
As Romney said, Perry taking credit for the conditions that make Texas great is like Al Gore taking credit for inventing the internet.
One more thing, Texas is a very large and diverse state with over 25 million people. Massachusetts is small, and only has a little over 6 million. In raw numbers of course Texas is going to create more jobs. One has to look at percentages of growth and other factors to measure performance.
Our friends at Pennsylvanians for Palin have done an incredible job of comparing the records of governors Huntsman, Palin, Pawlenty, Perry, and Romney on a variety of issues, using information available from the official records of each governor’s state, as well as information from U.S. government agencies when appropriate .
Whitney Pitcher wrote about the comparison between these five governors on debt and liabilities, an article Governor Palin shared with her supporters via Twitter. You can read it here.
On jobs, the numbers for Palin, Perry and Romney, look like this:
During Sarah Palin’s governorship (December 2006 – July 2009)
· Alaska ranked 2nd in the nation for job growth.
· Alaska ranked 3rd in the nation for change in the unemployment rate relative to the national average.
During Rick Perry’s governorship (December 2000 – May 2011)
· Texas ranked 4th in the nation for job growth.
· Texas ranked 23rd in the nation for change in the unemployment rate relative to the national average.
During Mitt Romney’s governorship (January 2003 – January 2007)
· Massachusetts ranked 47th in the nation for job growth.
· Massachusetts ranked 34th in the nation for change in the unemployment rate relative to the national average.
Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics
For all of the charts and graphs, click here.
One interesting note: Out of the five governors, only Rick Perry and Sarah Palin inherited unemployment rates higher than the national average. Alaska’s unemployment rate was significantly higher. The rest were in states with below average unemployment, even Romney, though only by 0.2%.
During their tenure both Palin and Perry lowered their states’ unemployment rate significantly below the national average, Palin more than Perry.