Corzine cooks the books

Jim Geraghty of the National Review has found something suspicious about Jon Corzine’s numbers. Apparently they are all lies.

In August, the state department declared that “employment in New Jersey grew in July, led by a gain of 13,000 jobs at private sector companies.” The state’s numbers showed a decline of only 7,100 public-sector jobs, meaning that as a whole, 5,900 more New Jersey residents were going to work than had gone the previous month. It was great news for the state, and for Corzine, coming in a month when the nation had lost 247,000 jobs overall.

The Department of Labor and Workforce Development wasted no time assigning credit for the job growth in its press release:

“New Jersey’s private sector employment is trending in the right direction,” said Labor Commissioner David J. Socolow. “Governor Corzine’s economic recovery initiatives are fostering job creation, and the nation’s recovery program is helping to restore economic confidence. As a result, New Jersey has laid the groundwork for a recovery marked by stronger job growth when the global recession ends.”

But September’s release offered some below-the-fold revisions. New Jersey’s private-sector job gain in July was 5,600 jobs, far short of the initial 13,000 claim; the net result was that 500 fewer New Jerseyans were going to work than the previous month. And while the governor had claimed to be holding a tough line on spending, the total number of jobs in the public sector was revised upward — from 643,300 to 644,300.

We have been saying this all along. How can Corzine claim he has created private sector jobs when the unemployment figures were climbing? It is called fun with numbers.

I worked for a company once where the head of accounting asked prospective employees one question. “What does one plus one equal?” There of course is only one correct answer. “What do you want it to equal?”

And that is how Corzine’s campaign treats numbers. They will fake them, make them up, skew them, and outright lie.

It’s not just Republicans who are taking New Jersey’s numbers with a grain of salt. Before the revision of the August number, New Jersey business groups greeted the figure warily. James W. Hughes, dean of Rutgers University’s school of planning and public policy; Nancy H. Mantell, director of the Rutgers Economic Advisory Service; and Joseph J. Seneca, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s school of planning and public policy, offered a skeptical assessment for the New Jersey Business and Industry Association, calling the August estimate “absolutely remarkable” — particularly the gain of 3,100 manufacturing jobs and 3,400 jobs in construction while both sectors “have been at the epicenter of job losses nationally.” They warned that “time will tell if this good news is too good to be true.”

New Jersey GOP spokesman Kevin Roberts says that Corzine and Socolow have never responded to GOP lawmakers’ questions about the revisions. On September 18, three Republicans on the State Assembly Labor Committee wrote committee chairman Joseph Egan, a Democrat, asking him to hold hearings on why the state agency “overestimated private sector job creation by 132 percent.” They have received no response.

Jon Corzine pleaded with the voters to hold him accountable. This November we have a chance to help him keep his word!

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