....while Louisiana’s debt is downgraded, and all of our public universities teeter on bankruptcy, this is what we...

Posted by Brian Salvatore on Sunday, February 28, 2016
Friday, 06 February 2015 23:48

Jindal omits key facts in setting Politico, NY Times straight

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jindals-book2Governor Jindal wants to set the record straight.

Today, he was scorched by two articles in the national media that took issue with his economic development claims and his budget.  One was in Politico, the other in the New York Times.


This space in questioning his leadership in dealing with the budget crises existing throughout his administration and of his own making, also cited the Politico article in a column this morning entitled, "Something evil about Bobby Jindal’s presidential campaign talk"

The Politico article was written by Tyler Bridges, formerly of The Lens.

Jindal's office, late this afternoon sent out an email blast "correcting" the publications:

This Morning’s Politico And New York Times Stories On The Louisiana Budget And Economy Omit Key Facts

Fact: Rating Agencies Have Upgraded Louisiana's Credit Rating 8 Times Since Governor Jindal Has Been In Office, Proving That Governor Jindal’s Budget Practices Are Sound

Louisiana’s credit rating has improved drastically since 2008, with the state receiving eight credit rating upgrades among the three major credit-rating agencies (Moody’s, Fitch, and Standards and Poor’s) over the past 6 years.
• Since 2008, Moody’s has upgraded the state’s credit rating twice, from an A2 rating in January 2008 to AA2 today.
• Since 2008, Fitch upgraded Louisiana’s credit rating 3 times from A to AA today.
• Since 2008, S&P has upgraded the State’s rating three times from A to AA status today.
o In May 2011—and reaffirmed in March 2014— Standard & Poor’s raised Louisiana’s credit rating from AA-minus to AA due to dramatic spending reductions in the state budget. The upgrade gave Louisiana its first AA rating from S&P since 1984. In its 2011 review, S&P praised Louisiana's "strong financial management practices."
o According to PEW Charitable Trusts, Louisiana has moved from having the lowest S&P rating among all states in 2001, to today being tied with 15 other states for the third highest rating in the nation.

Fact: Louisiana’s Private Sector Economy Is As Strong As It Ever Has Been

• More people have a job in Louisiana today than ever before: In December 2014, Louisiana established record-high levels for labor force, employed persons, total nonfarm employment, and private sector employment in the state.
• Since January 2008, Louisiana ranks No. 3 in the South and No. 9 in the nation for job growth.
• Today, Louisiana ranks higher in every national study of state business climates than it ever did prior to 2008.
• Since January 2008, Louisiana’s private sector has added 88,300 new jobs for a 5.6 percent growth rate that ranks No. 2 in the South and No. 5 in the nation.
• In the past 12 months alone, the state has added 34,600 new private-sector jobs.
• Louisiana has experienced 51 consecutive months of year-over-year private-sector growth.
• Since January 2008, Louisiana’s real GDP (gross domestic product) has grown by $17.98 billion, or 8.8 percent. That represents GDP growth that is nearly 86 percent faster than the nation and 38 percent faster than the South.
• According to the latest available data, per capita income in Louisiana has grown by $5,388 (15.0%) during the past six years and is at its highest level ever.
• According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Louisiana has experienced seven consecutive years of population in-migration, reversing decades of out-migration. 

• Louisiana’s population growth rate over the past seven years through July 1, 2014, was more than 7 percent faster than that of the U.S. overall.

No doubt Louisiana has rebounded from Hurricane Katrina that crippled the Louisiana economy.  The state also has been aided by sky-rocketing oil and gas prices which made Louisiana a much more attractive state for investments.  

the Governor's office said that the Politico and the New York Times articles omitted certain facts.  

The governor however, has not presented any facts to deny the  worse budget woes in the state's history since he has taken office, including a deficit for next year which could exceed %1.6 billion dollars.

Moreover, the Jindal administration, once again, misleads the public regarding the GDP.   While it is true that Louisiana's GDP since 2008 exceeds that of the United States and the South, the first years of the Jindal administration were marked with the significant infusion of federal money in the billions of dollars.

As this column has previously pointed out and which the Jindal administration has never refuted although they have been offered the opportunity to do so, the true numbers tell a different story:

According to Politicfact:


Adding 2013 to the GDP chart, United States wins.    The U.S. real GDP growth slowed to 1.8 percent in 2013.  Again, Louisiana scored only 1.3 percent.

Governor Jindal took office in January 2008.  Comparing the years of Louisiana GDP growth to the United States, during this period of time, the United States averaged .86% through 2013.  Louisiana, averaged 1.84%.

Which means, during the national recession and post-Katrina recovery, the United States average in 2008 and 2009, scored -.9%.  The Louisiana GDP for those two years was a whopping 9%.  During that period, when President Obama was pushing his stimulus, his automotive and his Wall Street bailout plans, Louisiana's economy was receiving and spending the federal money of which some have called the Hurricane Katrina "bailout" money.  

Yet, from 2010 through 2013, the period in which the Katrina money began to drop and the Jindal economic development policies gained shape, the United States averaged 1.18 percent per year while Louisiana has garnered a meager .2% per year. 

Although I am not a mathematician, I can count.  In stalk numbers, the US economy has outperformed Louisiana in GNP 29.5:1 over the past three years.  In short, we are "getting skewed" with Jindal's "see how great I am" numbers.

Hopefully, the next time the governor wants to set the record straight and makes his argument on national TV, one of the commentators will ask him about the real fact and not just those he always seems to omitted.

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Stephen Sabludowsky



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