During the Presidential debate, Donald Trump repeated his contention that massive job losses have been lost in Ohio and Michigan due to bad trade deals with Mexico and China. “Bigly” losses. His appeal to “working class white male voters” is premised on their displacement from work.
Before the March primaries, Ohio Gov. John Kasich boasted that Ohio created 400,000 jobs in his state and would do the same for Michigan as president. The total number of jobs in Ohio actually increased by about 383,500 since Kasich took over as governor in January 2011 and Ohio added 400,700 private-sector jobs from January 2011 to December 2015, according to the figures available from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. And Michigan gained more jobs than Ohio during Kasich’s time in office, both in raw numbers and in the rate of job growth. It’s also true that Kasich played a role in luring some jobs back from Mexico and China. For example, Trump falsely took credit in 2015 for getting Ford to move truck manufacturing lines from Mexico to Ohio, but Ford executives in 2011 credited Kasich for making the deal happen.
Perhaps Trump was inferring job losses in the manufacturing sector. Studies have shown that most of the job losses from large scale manufacturing have been due to automation, not trade losses. Many of these companies have been begging for qualified workers. If there is a crisis in complex manufacturing it is the lack of job training, a public sector responsibility.
So where are the massive job losses Trump cited in the debate? The same place as most of his other assertions–made up in hot air! No wonder Governor Kasich has refused to endorse Trump. Candidate Clinton would be well-served to cite the significant accomplishments of the Obama administration in stimulating job growth since 2008 and calling Trump on his blatant lie.
by Tim Urban