Former competitor Governor Huntsman used to pound Governor Mitt Romney about his job creation in the state of Massachusetts when he, Gov Romney, was Governor. I repeated the Huntsman criticism last night ON THE AIR at 10pm: that when Governor Romney was Governor, Massachusetts was 47th in job creation. 47th sounds horrible if you are running on a platform about creating jobs.
Today I dug deeper to look at the unemployment numbers – nationally and in Massachusetts when Gov Romney was Governor. I wanted to put the 47th in perspective to make sure I had it right – I did not want to overstate it or understate it. Take a look at this:
As you can see from the numbers, they are close. Specifically, in 2 of the years, Massachusetts unemployment was BELOW the national level and in one year tied and in one year a bit greater than the national level.
So now I am wondering, and I hope I state this delicately so as not to be misunderstood, if the full employment of Massachusetts was that high (and the unemployment that low), there was considerably less of a job creation problem.
In other words, the criticism about being the 47th would land a fatal blow if during that time Massachusetts had, for example, a 10 per cent unemployment – and jobs were not being created. 4.5 per cent is considered about full employment and thus with little room to add jobs (and to raise one’s standing in the state rankings.)
What do you think? Do I have this right?