‘Want lower unemployment? Get a GOP Governor.’

July 13, 2012

I certainly don’t want to lean too heavily on this—confounding variables and all that—but I know that at least one reader of this blog finds this kind of evidence very persuasive.  (I’m sure he’ll convert to conservatism immediately upon seeing this…)

Via Haemet and Breitbart.com, Examiner.com reports that Republican governors are correlated with falling unemployment rates recently.  (Eternity Matters also mentioned this, whence the pithy title.)

According to Examiner.com, 17 new Republican governors (elected in the 2010 Tea Party tsunami) first took office in January 2011; 8 new Democrat governors were also elected and took office at the same time.

  • Since then, every single new-Republican-governor state has seen a decrease in the unemployment rate, with an average decrease of 1.35 points (i.e., from 8.59% to 7.24%).
  • During the same time, the national rate fell by only 0.9 points.
  • New-Democrat-governor states saw a decrease similar to the national average, of only 0.95 points.

In other words, Republican governors were associated with unemployment falling 50% faster than the national average.  Make of that what you will.

Advertisements

16 Responses to “‘Want lower unemployment? Get a GOP Governor.’”

  1. Snoodickle Says:

    I do believe in such statistics, which is why President Obama gets credit for the 1.8% decrease in the national unemployment rate since October of 2009. http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS14000000
    That beats your Republican average by a whopping .45%! So, the evidence tells us that Democratic policies, while they may not work as well at the state level as at the national (although if you take out Cuomo’s abysmal showing – pointing out, of course, that New York’s state senate is controlled by Republicans – the Democratic average is actually a 1.24 decrease, including a phenomenal effort in fiscally ravaged California, which was previously led by a – clearing the throat – Republican governor), they do most certainly work at the national level.

    Hilariously, your own statistics have betrayed you. Will you now vote for Obama?

  2. Tevyeh Says:

    “That beats your Republican average by a whopping .45%!”

    So, 1.8% over 2.75 years beats 1.35% over 1.5 years? You should work for Merrill Lynch.

    • Snoodickle Says:

      Here’s the point, Obama took over an economy on the verge of a depression, and it has been steadily improving ever since his policies took hold. Romney, whose record on job creation was short of stellar in Massachusetts, wants to revert back to Bush era policies that were at least partly, if not completely, responsible for wrecking the economy. Why am I supposed to vote for Romney again?

    • Snoodickle Says:

      Cutting taxes while increasing military spending even more, deregulating Wall Street and virtually every other industry as well, letting the auto industry fail, etc., etc.

  3. Tevyeh Says:

    “Cutting taxes while increasing military spending even more…”

    Care to explain how these actions contributed to “wrecking the economy”?

    “…deregulating Wall Street…”

    Can you point to specifics? Which deregulatory actions did the Bush Administration take, and what was the mechanism whereby they contributed to the recession?

    “…letting the auto industry fail…”

    When did that happen?

    • Snoodickle Says:

      (1) Running up the deficit and national debt through tax cuts for the wealthy and deficit spending on unnecessary wars – which Romney has indicated that he will continue, and which admittedly Obama has had a part in, but under somewhat forced circumstances – contributed to a downgrade of American’s credit rating, and has led to a situation where we will need to make drastic spending cuts on important programs, which will contribute to a further decline of the economy. Obama, on the other hand, has ended the Iraq war, set in motion an end to the Afghanistan conflict, developed a strategy for a leaner, more targeted international military presence, and proposed raising taxes on the ultra-wealthy to help cut into the deficit, as well as other spending cuts. Of course, Obama has not had a stellar record on debts and deficits, but seeing as how Republicans forced him to keep taxes low, and how he was left with two wars and other unpaid-for spending obligations, I seriously doubt he could done a whole lot better.

      (2) Romney says that he would repeal Dodd-Frank in its entirety. I’m surprised you didn’t know that.

      (3) Romney has said that he would have let the auto industry fail and file for bankruptcy. I’m surprised you didn’t know that.


  4. “Hilariously, your own statistics have betrayed you. Will you now vote for Obama?”

    Hilariously, you seem not to have noticed that I both began and ended my blog entry by not relying on this kind of comparison. You’re the one who thinks this kind of thing is the be all and end all of policy analysis, remember?

    So I’m not bound by these numbers, but if you want to be, you have to play by the same rules:

    1.

    “. . . President Obama gets credit for the 1.8% decrease in the national unemployment rate since October of 2009.”

    No, he doesn’t. You’ve arbitrarily chosen the month when unemployment was at its very highest, and given him credit for all the months since then, but nothing before. You can’t have it both ways. The Examiner.com piece above counted from when the governors took office; if you want to compare apples to apples, we have to count from when Obama took office, in January of 2009. According to your own source, unemployment is up since then, by 0.4 points.

    2.

    Even more importantly, if the Examiner.com piece isn’t epistemologically worthless, it’s because it allows some actual comparison—of Democrat governors to Republican governors, and of both to the national average, in the same economy, during the same period of time. Your one-variable comparison has no control group to compare it to. If you want to play the same game the Examiner writer is playing, you should, e.g., compare America’s to other countries’ unemployment rates. (Of course, this would still be open to question in other ways—different countries mean different things by “unemployment” and count it differently, and there are probably a lot more exogenous variables running around in the economies in different parts of the world than between one state and another within America—and even then, it would not permit any comparison between Democrats and Republicans.)

    3.

    You want to cherry-pick the data, arbitrarily leaving out the worst-performing Democrat state and talking about which states have Republicans in which branches of government, or had in the recent past. You can’t have it all ways—Republican failures are Republicans’ fault, but Democrat failures are the fault of Republicans in other branches of government, or even from other periods in time. If you want to include that more complex picture for one state, you have to include it for all states.

    And if you’re finally starting to understand what Tevyeh has been saying all along about confounding variables, and you suspect that any such attempted empiricism can be spun a couple of different ways, then I think the least you can do is admit to Tevyeh that he had a point.

    • Snoodickle Says:

      Tevyeh and I were discussing Romney v. Obama, or maybe just Romney v. Romney, so far as I can tell.


    • And yes, in this conversation (above), you (Snoodickle) changed the subject from Bush to Romney when you couldn’t answer Tevyeh’s questions.

      • Snoodickle Says:

        I wonder if we’re reading the same post. What question did Tevyeh pose that I did not answer?


      • In your second comment on this entry (your first reply to Tevyeh), you said,

        “Romney, whose record on job creation was short of stellar in Massachusetts, wants to revert back to Bush era policies that were at least partly, if not completely, responsible for wrecking the economy.”

        You gave three examples. Tevyeh asked,

        “Which deregulatory actions did the Bush Administration take, and what was the mechanism whereby they contributed to the recession?”

        As to “letting the auto industry fail”, he asked,

        “When did that happen?”

        Your replies on those two items had nothing to do with Bush or anything that has actually happened; the most you could say was that you think Romney would do a bad job going forward, or (even weaker) that he would have done a bad job in some past situation that he himself will not encounter as president.

        Can you not only not tell the difference between Romney and Bush, but also not even tell the difference between the past and the future?

      • Snoodickle Says:

        So you are conceding that I did in fact respond to all his questions, just not to your satisfaction.


      • “I wonder if we’re reading the same post.”


Agree? Disagree? Thoughts?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: