A guide to some of President Obama’s claims:
“Over the past five years, our businesses have created more than 11 million new jobs.”
The low point in jobs was in February 2010, and there has been a gain of more than 11 million private-sector jobs since then, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data. Note that the president carefully referred to “businesses.” During the same period, the number of federal, state and local government jobs fell by more than 500,000. Obama can claim that nearly 6.4 million jobs were added since he took office.
“Forty-three million workers have no paid sick leave.”
This statistic came from a Labor Department survey, which found that 39 percent of 109 million private-sector workers do not get paid sick leave. That adds up to 43 million workers.
“Since 2010, America has put more people back to work than Europe, Japan and all advanced economies combined.”
Obama relied on a data point from 2010; in 2009, the U.S. was shedding thousands of jobs a month. He used the phrase “advanced economies” because he was relying on an International Monetary Fund listing of “advanced economies,” which includes entities such as Hong Kong but not fast-growing nations such as China. From the first quarter of 2010 through the second quarter of 2014, the U.S. created 7.5 million jobs — compared with 7.4 million in the other advanced economies.
“Our manufacturers have added almost 800,000 new jobs.”
The low point for manufacturing jobs was in January 2010. There has been a gain of 786,000 since then. Bureau of Labor Statistics data show that the number of manufacturing jobs is more than 300,000 fewer than when Obama took office.
“Our deficits [have been] cut by two-thirds.”
As a percentage of the GDP, the deficit in fiscal 2014 was 2.8 percent, the lowest since 2007. For fiscal 2009, when Obama took office, the deficit was 9.8 percent. That’s a 71 percent cut.
“In Iraq and Syria, American leadership — including our military power — is stopping ISIL’s advance.”
He can make a case that progress is being made against the group in Iraq, but he went too far when he added Syria to the same sentence. Three months of U.S. airstrikes in Syria have not prevented the group from expanding its territory there.