The Democratic candidate for governor says he needs to “beat down” the Republican governor’s job creation claims. Democrat Jack Hatch says Republican Governor Terry Branstad is misleading Iowans.
“He’s not necessarily fudging the numbers, but he’s not being totally honest,” Hatch said Thursday during a campaign event in a Des Moines coffee shop.
Hatch’s beef is with Branstad’s boast that 130,000 jobs have been created in the state since he took office in 2011.
“Even a fifth grader knows that you subtract that which you lose to get to the real number of the number of jobs that have been created and (Branstad) doesn’t tell you that,” Hatch said.
Hatch told the coffeehouse crowd that Branstad fails to mention the 60,000 jobs which have been lost in Iowa over the past three and a half years.
“They talk about the governor creating 130,000 jobs,” Hatch said. “It is that kind of messaging that we have to beat down and that’s the kind of false statement that gives rise to why people are cynical about government.”
Hatch also attacked Branstad’s claim that Iowa’s unemployment rate has improved since Branstad returned for a fifth term as governor. Hatch said Iowa had the fifth lowest unemployment rate of any state in 2011, but now it is two notches above that — the seventh lowest of any state in the country.
“The job deficit and the slow recovery of Iowa has to be recognized it we’re going to correct it,” Hatch said.
Branstad’s campaign spokesman said Branstad has an “unprecedented record of success” during the past three and a half years that includes “a near 30 percent drop in unemployment.” As for the job-creation numbers, Tommy Schultz — the communications director for the Branstad-Reynolds campaign — said Branstad is relying on data from the state Iowa Workforce Development agency rather than “the rhetoric of Jack Hatch.”