Wisconsin lost nearly 24,000 jobs over the past 12 months – the only state in the union with “statistically significant” job losses over that period, according to a new federal government report. For a governor who promised thousands of new jobs would be created on his watch and who now faces an unprecedented electoral challenge, that had to be troubling news. It’s certainly troubling for job seekers across the state.
Certainly, Gov. Scott Walker is responsible for politicizing job creation in Wisconsin – and then taking his eye off the ball as his fellow Republicans embarked on fulfilling a conservative wish list ranging from concealed carry to the castle doctrine to voter ID. But is Walker responsible for the state’s dreary job numbers? And is any politician really capable of creating significant job growth?
Walker made a promise over which he had little control – essentially he was betting on the come – by pledging that Wisconsin would create 250,000 new private-sector jobs during his first term. That may have been a political mistake.