PolitFact, a fact checking unit, says Gov. Pawlenty’s recent Wall St. Journal editorial is filled with inaccuracies and gave it a “Pants on Fire” ranking. There’s no worse ranking out there. The op-ed focused on the salary and benefits of government workers.
“Across the country, at every level of government, the pattern is the same: Unionized public employees are making more money, receiving more generous benefits, and enjoying greater job security than the working families forced to pay for it with ever-higher taxes, deficits and debt,” Pawlenty wrote.
Politifact says Pawlenty’s facts are wrong.
Not only did he apparently mangle the time frame, contradict his own definition of federal workers and fail to acknowledge the huge caveat of Census worker hiring, he also repeated a statistic that had been criticized as inaccurate as long as six months ago. (Another politician who got caught by PolitiFact Ohio was the incoming House Speaker, John Boehner, R-Ohio.) And in the context of his column, the job numbers comment was more than a throwaway line. The comparison of job growth he made — which showed the size of the federal workforce going in exactly the opposite direction as it did in reality — is a key pillar supporting the premise of his column, that government work is “the only booming ‘industry’ left in our economy.” Pawlenty’s number is so compromised that we rate his statement Pants on Fire!