Ohio Republican State Representative Jim McGregor of Gahanna, speaking at the September 29, 2008 rally for John McCain and Sarah Palin in Columbus, Ohio:
“You know, I believe Ohio is on the leading edge. We’re leaping into the greatest job growth since the era of World War II.”
What alternative reality does Jim McGregor reside in?
Unemployment jumped from 5.7% in August 2007 to 7.4% in August 2008. 1.3% higher than for the US overall, and higher than it’s ever been since George W. Bush took office. Number of hours worked by those who still have jobs is down from last year. Average hourly and weekly earnings for those who still have jobs are down over the past year too. The Ohio civilian labor force has 79,000 more people in it than when George W. Bush took office, but the number of people employed in Ohio is 35,000 lower than when Bush took office.
The only sense in which Ohio could possibly be “leaping into the greatest job growth since the era of World War II” is the sense in which job loss might be so extensive that the only possible direction for employment statistics to go is back up. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of room left for Ohio to fall. Anyone driving down High Street and Main Street can see the boarded-up storefronts. The fundamentals of our local economy are not sound. Leap back to reality, Rep. McGregor.