For Immediate Release
AUGUSTA - Maine House Republican leaders are calling on Democrats to stop attacking Republican reforms with phony jobs numbers. Since Pew Charitable Trusts in June released numbers stating that Maine was one of three states to lose jobs from April 2012 to April 2013, Democrats have been holding up the statistical tidbit even in the face of historic reforms to state government, reduced unemployment, higher wages, and less poverty.
Yesterday, the Portland Press Herald reported that the Bureau of Labor Statistics corrected mistakes in the data that the Pew study relied upon. As it turns out, Maine actually added jobs year-over-year.
"This information was spread far and wide over the past several months, and I hope that Democrats will do the right thing and stop using it," said House Republican Leader Ken Fredette of Newport. "Republicans have felt these numbers were wrong all along, considering other data available from the Maine Department of Labor, and Democratic leadership should welcome this news.
Continued Fredette: "Democrats like to talk about promoting Maine, and our recent economic headway is certainly something to promote, even if some of our old policies were not. This correction coincides with other good news about Maine's reduced welfare dependency and poverty levels. I hope that the media will cover this correction and get the truth out about Maine's recent economic progress."
"For decades, not a whole lot changed in Augusta with Democrats in control," added Assistant House Republican Leader Alex Willette of Mapleton. "Finally, with a slew of Republican reforms, we're starting to see some positive changes. It's a shame to see bad information malign that progress. Democrats should stop using the false figures and correct any past statements that referenced them. In the future, they should rely on Maine's own Department of Labor for their labor statistics."
A small sample of incidents of the false jobs stat being used:
- Press Release and Weekly Radio Address from Maine Senate Democrats
- Maine Progressives Warehouse
- Bangor Daily News, July 6
- Bangor Daily New, June 14
- Bangor Daily News, July 18
- MPBN, July 22
According to the Maine Department of Labor, the unemployment rate has dropped from eight percent in January 2011 to seven percent in August 2013. According to the Department's seasonally adjusted estimates, there are over 12,000 more jobs in Maine than there were when Republicans took power in January 2011.
Maine House Republicans
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