Governor Rick Perry decided to seek the Republican nomination for President of the United States while the economy is in a slow recovery from the Great Recession – created by the last Republican administration – and millions of Americans are either unemployed or underemployed. It is not surprising, then, that Perry is campaigning on his alleged record of job creation he humbly calls the “Texas miracle”.
However, when subjected to close scrutiny, this “miracle” is exposed as a mirage, promising wealth but slowly fading away to reveal the dust and dirt left behind.
According to Governor Perry’s website, as of “June of 2011, 32,000 net new jobs were created in Texas–more than any of the other states. From June 2010 to June 2011, Texas led all other states by far, adding 220,000 net new jobs.” Governor Perry also touts that according to the Dallas Federal Reserve, 37% of all net new American jobs through April 2011 were created in Texas.Those statements make good sound bites, but the reality is that the “Texas miracle” is a tall tale. Texas may have added some jobs in numeric terms – due mainly to geographic and demographic factors outside of Perry’s control, like the size of the state, high birth rates, a shared border with Latin America, immigration, rising oil prices, and increased military spending – but in real terms, the unemployment rate under Governor Perry tells a different story. Unemployment has grown under his watch and Texas has done worse since national unemployment peaked in October 2009. Other facts that Rick Perry forgot to mention about his “Texas miracle” are
- His policies failed to create the good jobs Americans’ want and need. The positions created in Texas since 2009 are mostly minimum wage jobs. As a matter of fact, Texas shares with Mississippi the dishonor of being the two states with the highest percentage of minimum wage workers in the nation.
- Texas median household income has fallen to 47th in the nation.
- When adjusted for change in population, Texas is last in net job creation.
- Rick Perry has borrowed money from the Federal Government (Obama’s TARP) to balance the budget in Texas since 2009, which contrasts strongly with his supposed fight against government overreach.