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Republican politicians like to say that Obamacare (AKA the Affordable Care Act or ACA) is a “job killer.” Here’s Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal on “Face the Nation” on February 22:

Why not delay all of the mandates in Obamacare [which] has become such a job killer in our economy.
I thought about these claims when I read the latest Labor Department numbers, which showed that the economy added 288,000 jobs in June, and the unemployment rate fell to 6.1%. If Obamacare is a job killer, it’s the worst job killer ever.

The ACA has been in effect since January 1 of this year. Enrollment for the ACA began on October 1, 2013, but the insurance took effect on January 1 of this year. What impact did that have on employment?

Here’s a graph and a chart of the actual numbers, based on the Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics Numbers. I’ve gone back to January 2001 to provide some historical context.  Here’s the graph:

Here’s the chart showing the actual numbers since January 2001.

Year    Jan    Feb    Mar    Apr    May    Jun    Jul    Aug    Sep    Oct    Nov    Dec    Annual
2001    -30    72    -25    -281    -38    -129    -115    -158    -242    -324    -294    -171     
2002    -142    -133    -19    -80    -8    57    -85    -15    -60    125    10    -158     
2003    94    -153    -210    -45    -11    10    23    -41    102    196    16    124     
2004    161    44    332    249    307    74    32    132    162    346    65    129     
2005    134    239    134    363    175    245    373    196    67    84    337    159     
2006    277    315    280    182    23    77    207    184    157    2    210    171     
2007    238    88    188    78    144    71    -33    -16    85    82    118    97     
2008    15    -86    -80    -214    -182    -172    -210    -259    -452    -474    -765    -697     
2009    -798    -701    -826    -684    -354    -467    -327    -216    -227    -198    -6    -283     
2010    18    -50    156    251    516    -122    -61    -42    -57    241    137    71     
2011    70    168    212    322    102    217    106    122    221    183    164    196     
2012    360    226    243    96    110    88    160    150    161    225    203    214     
2013    197    280    141    203    199    201    149    202    164    237    274    84     
2014    144    222    203    304    224(P)    288(P)                                   
P : preliminary

Clearly the job numbers bounce around from month to month. They did during the Bush years, and they are bouncing around now. The market crash of 2008 had a devastating impact on employment, but things certainly improved in 2011. Since then, job creation has been roughly the same as it was from 2004 to 2007. The implementation of the ACA doesn’t seem to have had much impact on job creation.  

Job growth was roughly 150,000 per month in 2013, before the ACA took effect, and roughly 200,000 in the since months since it took effect.

If Obamacare was a job killer wouldn’t that show up in the employment numbers?
So, clearly it can’t really be labeled a “job killer.” So Republican claims are a bunch of crap. I’m not even remotely surprised by that. I’m not surprised that there is generally no relation between fact and what comes out of many Republican politicians’ mouths. I’m used to that.  

What surprises me, or perhaps disappoints me, is that they get away with it so easily. I know the liberal blogosphere takes them to task, but most major news outlets don’t ever ask why they were so wrong. Maybe they’re so used to the Republican lies that it has just become background noise.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Chart Fail (15+ / 0-)

    I'm still trying to get my charts and graphs right, and clearly I failed.

  •  From these figures (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    J Orygun

    the mean number of jobs added in 2013 was 194.25 while the mean for 2014 is 230.83. The 36.58 difference is very likely in part because jobs were created by the ACA.

    It's particularly interesting to see that the best month for job growth this year was April which not only topped every month last year but was 37% better than the average for all of last year. It's a stand-out figure. It also happens to coincide with the heaviest enrollment period for the ACA, a time when insurers would have been desperate for more staff to deal with the load. I'm guestimating that it also coincides with those leaving their jobs to start a business,  dropping back to part time from full time work or retiring, all enabled by the ACA and all creating vacancies to be filled.

    It would also be interesting to know how many of these new jobs are in the medical field as more patients access medical care. Moreover, it would be interesting to compare the number of medical workers in states which expanded Medicaid as opposed to those which didn't. I'm willing to bet that states which did have increased medical staff while the states that didn't have lost medical staff.

    Please note that lamps in the Magic Lamp Emporium are on a genie time-share program so there may be a slight delay in wish fulfillment. (◕‿◕)

    by Mopshell on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 09:09:58 PM PDT

  •  ObamaCare is a ... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    ... job kisser and hugger!

    P.S. I think the new internet meme should be a bald Republican unsupported lie at the top with a chart or a graph underneath proving the GOP claim false. That's all that is needed. Thanks for the diary!

    My dog likes me because I'm salty. Not salty like a pirate. Salty like a pretzel.

    by Tortmaster on Wed Jul 09, 2014 at 09:24:10 PM PDT

  •  The press has a prejudice in favor of lies because (0+ / 0-)

    lies are easy to disprove and thus provide a reliable basis for a story. It's a prejudice they share with the cops, who also employ lies to prompt crooks to tell them the truth.
    The truth, on the other hand, is more ellusive. Much depends on perspective and perception.

    by hannah on Thu Jul 10, 2014 at 01:50:40 AM PDT

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