I’ve been a little mystified by reporting on Michigan’s unemployment of late. There was this NYT story that gave credit to Rick Snyder credit for, “presiding over an employment rebound in a state that not long ago had the highest jobless rate in the nation” (and which I beat up here). There’s this MLive article that reports, “the state’s jobless rate has dropped from a high of 14.2 percent in August 2009 to 9 percent last month” without noting that that 9% was .7% higher than recent lows. And even this AP report on Rick Snyder’s decision to lay off a almost a quarter of the unemployment staffers (with the part timers Snyder laid off last month, 35% of unemployment staffers have been cut) didn’t say that unemployment actually started creeping up before Snyder made the layoff decisions.
Unemployment went up again in the last month, to 9.4% (some of this likely stems from a shift in model year layoffs and will probably go down next month), effectively reversing the last year of job gains and up 1.1% from its recent low.
Will the Snyder-loving press start reporting these job losses?
To be fair, I don’t think Snyder deserves all of the blame. Obama’s failure to provide real mortgage relief has been a big weight on economic growth in Michigan, even as the auto bailout and the energy investments have added jobs.
But Snyder has cut a lot of job-supporting efforts put in place under Jennifer Granholm. Not to mention–by gutting unemployment insurance staffers–cutting public employment so far as to bring down the rest of the economy.
Rick Snyder, like Mitt Romney is promising to do at the national level, promised his business friendly ways would grow MI’s economy. Instead, it looks like they’ve dampened the efforts that were put into place.