While on ABC News “This Week with George Stephanopoulos,” Scott Walker was asked point blank about his dismal failure to keep his promise to create 250,000 jobs in Wisconsin. It was painfully obvious Walker didn't want to talk about this as he repeatedly tried to dance around the subject:
KARL: So one of your central promises was that you were going to create 250,000 private sector jobs in Wisconsin. When I asked you about that two years ago, you said you would get it done…
SOT Walker: “We're still committed, by 2015, which is our goal -- it's a little bit less than two years away -- to get to 250,000.”
KARL: But you haven’t done it. You fell quite a bit short.
WALKER: Yeah, we set a big bold goal. We created over 150,000 jobs in these first four years. We went from 8.1 percent unemployment the December before I took office to last month we nearly cut that in half to 4.4%, well below the national unemployment rate. We’re going to continue to aim high both in our state, and if I were a candidate for president of the United States, I would aim high there as well.
KARL: But that was a central promise. You fell significantly short, so should we expect you to fall short of the promises you're making now?
WALKER: Well, you look at all the other promises we made. Four years in a row, property taxes are lower now than we started. We froze tuition, we fixed the budget from 3.6 billion in a hole to surpluses. The rainy day fund is 165 times bigger than when we took office. Schools are better. You look at one promise after another. We fulfilled it.
Truth be told, Walker's job plan is worse than if he did nothing at all.
But heck, who wouldn't mind overlooking the missing 125,000 jobs when he did all that other stuff?!
Except that Walker didn't really do all that other stuff either.
Walker's income tax cuts came to be about $6 per household. The average cut to property tax was a whopping $15 per household.
And what did that $21 in tax cuts get the average Wisconsin family?
For starters, contrary to Walker's claims, the state is still dealing with a staggering deficit, caused mostly by Walker's big tax breaks to companies and wealthy donors as well as his failure to create jobs. (Walker thinks he can get away with saying he took care of the deficit by simply changing the way he measures the deficit.)
Wisconsin also is the proud owner of a devastated education system, a disintegrating university system, tens of thousands of people kicked off of BadgerCare and a weakened social safety net. We also have an abundance of roadkill, since we can't afford cleaning it up.
Not only did Walker fail at creating jobs, he made sure the few jobs we do have didn't see much in the way of wage growth. Then again, it must be pretty difficult to create job or wage growth when he's created such a toxic economic environment that the state is dead last in the nation for starting new businesses.
On second thought, maybe Walker would be better off talking about his failure to create jobs. That would keep the focus on just one of his failures instead of a lot of them.