With a young and fast-growing population, a large and expanding military presence and an influx of federal stimulus money, the number of government jobs in Texas has grown at more than double the rate of private-sector employment during Perry’s tenure.

The disparity has grown sharper since the national recession hit. Between December 2007 and last June, private-sector employment in Texas declined by 0.6 percent while public-sector jobs increased by 6.4 percent, according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics. Overall, government employees account for about one-sixth of the workforce in Texas.

The significant role of government in Texas’s relative prosperity stands in stark contrast to the “go-it-alone” image cultivated by Perry, who credits a lack of government interference for fostering a business-friendly environment in Texas…

Mark Miner, a Perry spokesman, said the governor’s job-creation record speaks for itself. He also said the state received less per capita — about $1,000 per resident vs. more than $1,400 in New York and $1,200 in California — than most other states from the stimulus plan while still producing more jobs.