Fox News' Eric Bolling and Greta Van Susteren criticized Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid over his statement that "it's very clear that private-sector jobs have been doing just fine. It's the public-sector jobs where we've lost huge numbers." In fact, since the Recovery Act took effect, the private sector has gained 1.4 million jobs, while the public sector has lost 572,000.
Fox Hosts Claim Reid's Statement Was Inaccurate
Bolling: "Public Sector Jobs Have Increased By Almost 160,000 Since President Obama Took Office." From Fox Business' Follow the Money:
BOLLING: All right, very quickly, Z99, guys. This is Harry Reid responding to Senator McConnell's blame-game accusation.
REID [video clip]: The massive layoffs we've had in America today have, of course -- are rooted in the last administration, and it's very clear that private-sector jobs have been doing just fine. It's the public-sector jobs where we've lost huge numbers.
BOLLING: First of all, can I just point something out? Public-sector jobs have increased by almost 160,000 since President Obama took office. What is he talking about?
STEPHEN HAYES (Fox News contributor): Yeah, you're going to hear that clip again and again and again. [Fox Business, Follow the Money, 10/19/11]
Van Susteren: If Reid "Truly Thinks" What He Said, "I'm Thinking To Myself, Where Has He Been?" From Fox News' On the Record with Greta van Susteren:
VAN SUSTEREN: Good evening, Dennis, and this certainly has set off a bit of a firestorm, this statement. The private sector doesn't seem to be doing particularly well as far as I've seen.
DENNIS KNEALE (Fox Business senior correspondent): Well, he said private sector jobs have been doing just fine, and I'm sure that as soon as that frog jumped out of his mouth he wished he could have grabbed it and brought it back in there because it is --
VAN SUSTEREN: I don't think so, though, because he hasn't done -- he hasn't asked for a do-over. It's like, you know, I'm surprised at this one.
KNEALE: He's standing by it, but you know, he's factually incorrect. Here's a couple numbers for you. We are still down 1.6 million jobs since Obama took office, and government at all levels down 607,000 jobs. Now -- but worse than that, never mind the facts, what bothers me, Greta, is that it's so upside down.
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, I think there's another element to it though besides the economic element to it. You know, there's been so many allegations of class warfare, pitting the rich against the poor, that's been the allegation of the Republicans that that's what the Democrats are trying to do. And now in this sort of bizarre sense is that it creates sort of a, you know -- the private sector looking for jobs and the public sector looking for jobs, it just creates more - now they're going to be at each other's throats.
VAN SUSTEREN: There's also another serious problem. This is the leader of the Senate. And if he truly thinks -- I'm looking at this quote again -- that private-sector jobs have been doing just fine, I'm thinking to myself, where in the world has he been? We have a 9.1 percent unemployment, many of which are private-sector people looking for jobs, but to say anybody is doing fine in this economy -- [Fox News, On the Record with Greta van Susteren, 10/19/11]
Reid Is Right: Since Stimulus, Private Sector Has Gained 1.4 M Jobs, Public Sector Has Lost 572,000
PoliticalCorrection.org: Since Recovery Act Was Implemented, "The Private Sector Has Seen A Net Gain Of 1.4 million Jobs" While "Budget Cuts Have Eliminated 572,000 Government Workers On Net." From an October 7 post by PoliticalCorrection.org, Media Matters' partner organization:
The chart below, updated with today's report, illustrates the steady contraction of the public sector and the expansion of the private economy since the Recovery Act actually began to reach the economy in early summer 2009. Since that time, the private sector has seen a net gain of 1.4 million jobs; if public-sector employment had just held steady, without any hiring or firing, the economy would have grown by about 2 million jobs over this period. Instead, budget cuts have eliminated 572,000 government workers on net.
[Click to enlarge]
[Political Correction, Media Matters Action Network, 10/7/11]