After President-elect Donald Trump announced that he had negotiated an agreement with the air conditioning firm Carrier to keep 1,000 manufacturing jobs in Indiana, the White House tried to downplay his achievement.
Obama spokesman Josh Earnest acknowledged that it was “good news” that Trump’s team had persuaded Carrier to change its plan to ship those jobs to Mexico, but made sure to tell reporters that Trump hadn’t come close to President Obama’s “high standard” for creating similar jobs.
Earnest said that “if [Trump] is successful in doing that 804 more times, then he will meet the record number of manufacturing jobs” created during Obama’s eight years in office.
Via The Hill:
Earnest went further, saying that the roughly 800,000 jobs he cited were new jobs created under Obama’s watch. He said the president protected “more than a million” additional manufacturing jobs in the Midwest with his bailout of the auto industry.
“The one difference would be the president-elect is talking about protecting jobs,” he said. “The metric I’m using is actually creating jobs.”
But as Kelly Riddell of the Washington Times notes, Obama actually presided over a loss of manufacturing jobs.
According to manufacturing employment data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, since Mr. Obama took office in 2009, the U.S. has lost about 303,000 manufacturing jobs. I’m not sure how one even spins that into a positive.
Moreover, in his 2012 re-election campaign, Mr. Obama promised to create 1 million new manufacturing jobs by the end of this year, and said he was working to double American exports over the next five years, but statistics show he’s fallen short on both measures.
Between the time he made the promise and October 2016 (the most recent data available), the number of manufacturing jobs only rose by 297,000 — far below the 1 million jobs he promised.
He’s also slightly behind in his 2012 promise to double American exports over the next five years. In 2012, U.S. exports were $2.2 trillion. Projections for 2016 look to be … about $2.2 trillion.
On the bright side, at the rate he’s going, Trump could double American exports over the next five months and Obama would be more than happy to take the credit for it. The Donald isn’t even in office yet and he’s already giving Obama an inferiority complex.
On his radio talk show Wednesday, Rush Limbaugh described what he thought was going on at the White House when Trump made the announcement about Carrier.
Don’t doubt me on this — there was seething. There was rage, there was cursing at everything about it, at Trump over the details of the story, over how small it was gonna make Obama look, how inconsequential it was gonna make Obama look. So they had to have a meeting and they had to devise how they’re gonna deal with this.
Trump announces saving a thousand jobs, and it’s a bigger economic announcement than any Barack Obama has had in eight years. That’s what they’re steaming about in the White House. Trump goes out and tweeting that he has saved a thousand jobs at Carrier in Indiana, and it’s bigger economic news than anything Obama announced. Bigger than his stimulus, which didn’t work. Bigger than Obamacare, which is an albatross around this nation’s neck and is gonna have to be dispatched and rebuilt.
Practically everything Obama touched has been damaged to one degree or another. I think it’s quite telling that an announcement of saving a thousand jobs is maybe the biggest economic news this country has had — the most uplifting, shall we say — in eight years, and they know it at the White House, and they know it at the Democrat Party. And they’ve not had experience dealing with this because they have not had a functioning opposition, which was out to defeat them, or fix their mistakes. They’re up against things they have no preparation for, no recent experience dealing with.