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Commonwealth Institute: Despite McDonnell’s and Bolling’s Claims, “No Progress on Jobs” in Virginia


From the Commonwealth Institute comes this new report. The bottom line? Despite Bob McDonnell’s and Bill Bolling’s ridiculous, exaggerated, cherry-picked claims to the contrary (also, note that the figures cited are always gross, not net, jobs), Virginia has made “no progress on jobs” over the past year since the McDonnell Administration took office. According to the report:

When we look at the average monthly job growth of the McDonnell Administration between

February and December 2010, the Commonwealth saw just 5,036 net jobs added per month. At this rate, it will take Virginia well into 2022 to dig itself out of the hole created by the Great Recession.

That’s right, it will be 11 more years at this rate until Virginia gets back to where we were before the Republican Great Recession, which as we know was caused by “widespread failures in government regulation, corporate mismanagement and heedless risk-taking by Wall Street.” Which raises the question: what is the McDonnell/Bolling/Cooch administration doing to strengthen government regulation and crack down on corporate mismanagement/”heedless risk-taking?” Short answer: nothing. Long answer: nothing. Instead, as we know, these guys are far too busy posturing, pursuing witch hunts, pushing 1800’s-style “nullification”, chatting with Steven Spielberg, and politically posturing up on Capitol Hill to spend any time on addressing the roots causes of the economic situation we find ourselves in.

With that, check out the Commonwealth Institute’s press release on the “flip.”

P.S. And of course, without the massive “stimulus” passed by Democrats and opposed by almost all Republicans, Virginia would be in far, far worse shape than it currently is. Same thing if we didn’t have federal and “contractor” employment, which provides a stable base of prosperity for much of Virginia. On both counts, the ideologically-driven policy preferences of McDonnell/Cooch/Bolling would have severely harmed Virginia if they had had their way. Thank goodness, they didn’t — for the most part, anyway.

In Virginia: No Progress on Jobs

Employment at same levels now as at the end of the recession

RICHMOND, VA-Despite headlines touting the creation of 50 jobs here and 100 jobs there, Virginia has made no real progress in jobs creation since the recession ended in June 2009, according to a report published yesterday by The Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis, an independent fiscal policy think tank based in Richmond.

“We’re right where we were at the official end of the recession,” says Michael Cassidy, President and CEO of The Commonwealth Institute. “We had an employment level of 3.6 million jobs back then and we’re still at that level.  We’re in a very large jobs hole in Virginia,” he says, “and we’re going to be in it for some time.”

According to the report, which incorporates the latest numbers released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the jobs gap in Virginia now stands at over 263,000.  That is the number of jobs Virginia needs  just to return to pre-recession employment levels. At the current rate of job growth – on average 5,000 per month since the start of the new administration – that gap won’t be filled until 2022.

“The challenge is unprecedented,” says Cassidy. “To fill the current jobs gap by 2012, Virginia would need to add roughly 24,906 jobs per month every month this year. To fill it by 2013, we would need to add roughly 13,929 jobs per month every month of the next two years,” he explained. “But since 1939, the largest average monthly jobs growth we’ve had in the state was during a single year from 1996-1997 when we were at full employment and created on average 10,683 jobs per month. That hasn’t happened since.”

The sobering analysis comes as Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell travels to Washington to testify before Congress on the job situation in Virginia.

The complete report, In Fits and Starts: Virginia’s Modest Jobs Recovery and the Challenges Ahead, is available at www.thecommonwealthinstitute.org.