A Blow to Walker? Wisconsin Leads Nation in Job Loss

With a recall election around the corner, Democrats are quick to label Gov. Scott Walker's administration a failure, while the Republican governor's camp claims most job losses occurred in Milwaukee under Mayor Tom Barrett's watch.

The keystone of Gov. Scott Walker‘s successful bid to become Wisconsin governor was his promise to create 250,000 new jobs in the state, but new data from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate the state has actually lost ground on that front.

Now, rather than 250,000 jobs, Walker will need to create roughly 273,900 to fulfill his promise. According to the BLS, Wisconsin shed 23,900 jobs between March 2011 and 2012. It was the only state with a statistically significant percentage change in employment to report a net loss, the report said.

According to JSOnline, public sector job losses totaled 17,800, while private sector job losses were 6,100.

Of the 29 states to report a significant change in employment, Texas led the way in job creation – adding more than 245,000 jobs.

However, the unemployment rate in Wisconsin dropped from 7.6 percent to 6.8 percent over the same period of time. The state’s unemployment rate is still below the national unemployment rate of 8.2 percent.

The discrepancies between the state’s job loss total and its unemployment rate is due to BLS data originating from two different surveys, and a drop in the unemployment rate reflects fewer people looking for work.

With a historically significant recall election on June 5, Democrats were quick to pounce on the latest BLS statistics Tuesday and labeled Walker’s governorship thus far as a failure.

“Walker’s jobs record is a total failure, and this is what happens when you pursue ideology instead of focusing on jobs,” stated Democratic challenger and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett in a statement. “The nation is experiencing economic recovery, and our neighbors like Illinois are adding jobs. Yet, Wisconsin remains an island of job loss. It’s clear this governor would rather put an extreme, partisan agenda ahead of Wisconsin’s economy, and it’s why we need a new governor on June 5.”

Added fellow Democratic challenger Kathleen Falk: “Every report card that comes in for Gov. Walker shows he’s failing Wisconsin.”

“I am the only candidate with a jobs plan that invests in the manufacturing opportunities only Wisconsin has to create jobs and move us forward. While Wisconsin sadly continues to lose jobs under Gov. Walker, during my 14 years as county executive, our county had the highest job growth in the state – nearly 30,000 jobs.”

The Walker campaign didn't respond to requests for comment Tuesday. However, in a press release sent earlier this month, the Republican governor's campaign said most of state’s job losses occurred in Milwaukee during Barrett’s watch. The Walker camp blamed Barrett for a 27 percent increase in unemployment in the state’s largest city.

“As the mayor of Milwaukee, a city with rampant unemployment, Tom Barrett’s number one priority should be encouraging job creation in his city," Walker campaign spokeswoman Ciara Matthews said. "Instead, he shows a complete lack of leadership by spending his days campaigning for governor for a third time while offering no answers as to why he has been silent on the crucial issues facing the state.

The other top Falk and Barrett are the top Democrats running for governor in the May 8 recall primary.

morninmist April 26, 2012 at 11:21 AM
Good on Ed. Scott Walker Gets Ridiculed For Highest Job Losses in the Nation http://bit.ly/IiLcGb #wiunion #topprog #p2 @Jane_WI Scott Walker Gets Ridiculed For Highest Job Losses in the Nation By: Sarah JonesApril 26, 2012 Here’s something you have to watch, just for the sheer deliciousness. Ed Schultz takes on Governor Scott Walker’s worst job losses in the country record. But the fun doesn’t stop there. He then brings on Governor Pat Quinn (D-IL) for a little job growth schadenfreude. In case you block out most of what Scott Walker says, just a month ago Walker was mocking the Illinois Governor and “breaking his arm patting himself on the back” over his policies. But alas for poor Scott, today, the Wisconsin State Journal ran with this headline: “Wisconsin job losses highest in nation for last 12 months, federal report says.” Oh. OH. Oh. Job creators. Uh huh. Watch Ed take down Scott Walker courtesy of MSNBC: The Wisconsin State Journal reported [above the fold] that the job losses weren’t all public sector. Oh, no. Walker can kill jobs everywhere. Public, private, you name it, Scott Walker can kill it:...
Luke April 26, 2012 at 11:45 AM
@morninmist And here's a graphic for you: Wisconsin is near the top: http://www.bls.gov/web/laus/laumstrk.htm I'm aware that you would like to be selective in what visual you use. The fact is that you want to make is that the Current Employment Statistics survey (CES) show a downtrend when Wisconsin is compared for a full year. What you miss is that Walker had to catch the falling knife that Doyle dropped. Walker never claimed that he would turn things around immediately. Since the beginning of the year, the CES shows that January has had 15,700 jobs added, and February has had 8,300 jobs added, while March was down 4,500. According to the Current Population Survey (CPS), however, March had an increase of 7,062 jobs, up 18,498 for the last 12 months. The discrepancy between the CES and CPS comes about because the CES is gathered from industries that report the number of jobs they have, whereas the CPS is collected by calling households. The CES only reports jobs, so a person who works 3 jobs is counted three times, but that person would only be counted once in the CPS. In fact, because the CES relies upon industries reporting, it cannot include the self-employed, many construction, agricultural jobs, just to name a few. If a person takes a full-time job and drops three part-time job, the CES shows that two jobs were lost, but the CES shows the person fully employed. Continued..
Luke April 26, 2012 at 11:49 AM
These factors result in very volatile CES stats, but rather smooth CPS stats. Therefore, jobs lost is volatile and will have big swings, whereas unemployment will have small, incremental moves. So as things stand, Walker is on track for this year. In fact, NPR’s Planet Money interview a number of economists and reported last year that he could easily meet his goals, unless Europe fell into a recession (which it has), because Wisconsin does so much business with Europe.. This month's US Durable Goods Report shows that March had the biggest hit in three years (Thanks, Obama), but I still think it will be easy to hit the target, given the stats from the first two months. In conclusion, the excitement over March's CES is premature. We will have months when it swings up, and months when it swings down. But in general, the CES and CPS are positively correlated, and they will converge when pulled apart. The "steady Eddie" CPS says that 6.8 unemployment will be where we slowly move from here. Any chart will show the smooth movement of the CPS and the volatile moves of the CES.
Tom Kamenick April 26, 2012 at 11:57 AM
Bucky, that is completely wrong. The "unemployed" for unemployment statistics is not equivalent to those receiving unemployment benefits. Completely different numbers.
Tom Kamenick April 26, 2012 at 12:01 PM
People leave the job market for lots of reasons, only one of which should be considered a negative for jobs generally - the person actually gave up looking for a job. If somebody leaves the state, they've left our job market. If somebody chooses to be a stay at home parent, they've left the job market. If somebody retires, they've left the job market.
morninmist April 26, 2012 at 12:18 PM
Well Luke This IS the headline most saw yesterday--it is a lasting visual: http://thepoliticalenvironment.blogspot.com/2012/04/walkers-alternative-universe.html Wednesday, April 25, 2012 Walker's Alternative Universe This was Walker's message on April 10th when he kicked off his recall campaign for re-election: "We're headed in the right direction," Walker said. "We're turning things around. We're moving Wisconsin forward." This is the banner headline in Wednesday's Journal Sentinel [ABOVE THE FOLD]: State posts largest percentage job loss in U.S. over past year
john foat April 26, 2012 at 12:29 PM
dems slash jobs to bash walker, dem missleed , lie, just to put $ in their pocket.
Luke April 26, 2012 at 12:45 PM
@morninmist Soitenly it must be true then. Nuyck, Nuyck. Next to a piece of paper written on with a crayon, that site has credibility. As for the Journal article, it actually touches on some of my points, but I go further. It doesn't contradict me, per se. But of course, I am a better reporter, so I point out the obvious statistical comparisons. I also would have compared Barrett's record, just because I'm honest.
Menoparent April 26, 2012 at 01:12 PM
While WI lost -23,000 jobs with Walker, IL actually gained +31,000 jobs with Gov Quinn all while RAISING TAXES within the same time period (3/2011-3/2012).
Menoparent April 26, 2012 at 01:35 PM
Luke, you misunderstand the fact that raising taxes does NOT job kill an economy, it STIMULATES it! I have heard Quinn talk and even with a struggling economy their numbers and his respect and attitude towards people of his state is a heck of a lot better than ours.
Luke April 26, 2012 at 01:35 PM
@menoparent See my discussion of your misunderstanding of the stats, above. As for Quinn, he recently announced that he will close 14 facilities and lay off thousands of union workers. I believe his approval rating is about 33% right now.
morninmist April 26, 2012 at 01:38 PM
@Luke Your post reminded me of the recent time when the Walker Administrator wrote his estimate for the Capitol so-called damage on the back of a piece of paper--for about 7.5 MILLION dollars. ha ha. And that was the only testimony given that day. ha ha Talk about credibility. ha ha. ................... Luke 7:45 am on Thursday, April 26, 2012 @morninmist Soitenly it must be true then. Nuyck, Nuyck. Next to a piece of paper written on with a crayon, that site has credibility...............
Luke April 26, 2012 at 01:44 PM
@morninmist Well, at least I made you laugh. But I'm always here to back up what I say.
Jaime Sommers April 26, 2012 at 01:50 PM
Part of the title of this news article is "A Blow to Walker" and, speaking of providing blows to Walker, has anyone heard anything more about Cierra Matthews, the former Hooters girl that is running his Recall Campaign? I hope she doesn't blow it, or, maybe, that is her role in this position. Who knows! It's not what you know, it's WHO you .... b ... know that counts.
Luke April 26, 2012 at 01:51 PM
@menoparent I'm glad you like Quinn. He will not be employed after the next election, however. Even if only Dems are allowed to vote, a homeless person could beat him in the primary.
Steve ® April 26, 2012 at 02:00 PM
Cut the fat, fire the pork. Elected in just over a year ago to cut their government's down to size and keeping their promises. Spin it baby, feed us so more propaganda.
Randy1949 April 26, 2012 at 03:19 PM
Actually, MDS, if you look at the breakdown of your property tax bill, there is a levy that goes to the state. It's small compared to the other categories, but there is one. Also, the property tax levies are somewhat independent of the valuation. For instance, when the property values decline steeply, as they have over the past several years, the levy rates rise to compensate, and there is little change in the tax bill, other than the inevitable increase.
Pamela April 26, 2012 at 05:23 PM
What a mess. Numbers are being slung around, names are being called, money is being spent and the State has been put in limbo with family and friends keeping distances all because of what people? Recallers need to get back to WHY this recall was started. The ISSUE IS was it right for Governor Walker to "take away" public workers collective bargaining rights. I think it was a smart decision and a fair one. I still have not been convinced that it is fair for one group of state residents to have more power than the rest of us, over decision making on issues that involve them, but directly EFFECTS ALL OF US. Yes, they pay taxes too and so do the rest of us. If there is a serious concern over the way they are being treated or are poorly compensated, that would be huge, and should be put to a public vote. Recallers act as though Scott Walker fought to become the Governor, just to tick them off and shoot himself in the foot. I give him a lot of credit for what he has had to put up with. And egad! Teachers, of all people, acting like spoiled brats that are not getting their way and turning this into a game. Families of teachers shunning friends who do not agree that their babies are being maliciously mistreated by Scott Walker. Good grief! All common sense has gone out the window!
Pamela April 26, 2012 at 05:29 PM
Ooops! Sorry Luke. Didn't mean to "reply" to your comment. Just venting frustration :)
Bucky April 27, 2012 at 12:42 AM
Tom ... I understand that, but add the two numbers together and what do you get ?
Bucky April 27, 2012 at 12:48 AM
Geez Pamela ... Is it that time of the month already ?
Bucky April 27, 2012 at 01:11 AM
Jaime ... Well I guess that explains the stupid look on Walkers face all the time. Maybe she sucked the brain out of his head.
Tom Barrett April 27, 2012 at 02:16 AM
Is this bad? http://www.ibwisconsin.com/In-Business-Wisconsin/April-2012/WMC-87-of-Wisconsin-employers-predict-job-growth/
The Anti-Alinsky May 02, 2012 at 02:05 AM
Yes Tom, it is bad. . . . . . For Kathleen, Tom and the rest of the Democrats trying to drag this state to Hell!
Keith Best May 03, 2012 at 12:46 PM
http://chiefexecutive.net/will-wisconsin-rise-again Read this......and learn.
Bucky May 04, 2012 at 01:45 AM
Tom ... put the crack pipe down .
Bucky May 04, 2012 at 01:48 AM
Alfred are you Scott's secret lover ? Were you in the scouts ?
Bucky May 04, 2012 at 01:50 AM
Alfred ... how much crack do you smoke a day ?
Bucky May 04, 2012 at 01:53 AM
Alfred ... Are you always drunk and high on drugs ? Sober up man !
Bucky May 05, 2012 at 12:19 AM
Alfred ... Are you a pimp ?


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