Friday, September 9, 2011

Debate Fact Check: US Presidential Candidates Pervert the Truth

Debate fact check shows that Republican candidates Mitt Romney and Rick Perry were not completely truthful when talking about their job-creation records as Governor, reports the AP.

As unemployment continues to hold steady in the United States, it has been pushed to the forefront of discussion for potential presidential nominees.

The AP has put together a fact check, shedding light on some of the claims made in the debate:

Rick Perry said: "Ninety-five percent of all the jobs that we've created have been above minimum wage."

Facts: The figures Perry pointed to represented all workers, not just the new jobs. That does not account for low-wage jobs that may be above the minimum wage. According to the Texas Workforce Commission, 51 percent of all Texas workers make less than $33,000 a year. Only 30 percent make more than $50,000 a year. Nationally, Texas ranked 34th in median household income from 2007 to 2009.

About 9.5 percent of Texas hourly workers, excluding those who are paid salaries, earn the minimum wage or less, tying Mississippi for the highest percentage in the nation.

Mitt Romney said: "At the end of four years, we had our unemployment rate down to 4.7 percent. That's a record I think the president would like to see. As a matter of fact, we created more jobs in Massachusetts than this president has created in the entire country."

Facts: Romney started from a much better position than President Barack Obama did. Unemployment was only 5.6 percent when Romney took office in 2003, meaning it came down by less than 1 percentage point when he left office in 2007. Obama inherited a national unemployment rate of 7.8 percent.

The Republican presidential debate was held Wednesday night, September 7.

- Source

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