WSJ: Only 14 major cities have more jobs now than before the recession

I’m starting to think that President Obama should probably drop Gov. Rick Perry and some other red-state governors a quick thank-you note for contributing more than their “fair share” to this economic “recovery” we’re in.

As Ed summarized last week, final fourth quarter GDP growth came in at 0.4 percent with overall 2012 GDP growth sitting at 2.2 percent — pretty paltry near-stagnation figures, but at least we’re momentarily losing fewer jobs than we have been in our recent history. …So, there’s that, I suppose.

Among the real job creation that is going on, a bunch of it is coming from — surprise — red states like Texas, while a lot of blue-state cities are struggling to compete for businesses and jobs. The WSJ reports that only 14 of the country’s 100 biggest cities have more jobs than they did pre-2008/2009 recession, and almost half of those are in Texas:

Six of them are in Texas, according to researchers at the Brookings Institution, who recently analyzed local economic conditions through the end of 2012. …

Robust employment in the oil and gas industries helped the Texas cities, although data from the Texas Workforce Commission suggests the job recovery has come from a variety of industries. Austin, San Antonio, El Paso, McAllen, Dallas and Houston all made the list, along with Oklahoma City, another energy town. The other cities on the list of 14 are: Omaha, Neb., Salt Lake City, Pittsburgh, San Jose, Calif., Knoxville, Tenn., Washington and Charleston, S.C. …

“Texas has been a bright spot in the recession. Its housing market wasn’t hit as hard,” said Alec Friedhoff, a senior research analyst at Brookings, a Washington think tank. “The oil-and-gas industry has been a great boon for that part of the country.”

Texas has added jobs every month since January 2010, according to the Texas Workforce Commission.

Clearly, Gov. Perry is doing something right (perhaps President Obama could follow his lead a little more instead of following in the wake of Jerry Brown?), and it’s all part of the growing trend of cities in lower-tax, pro-growth red states attracting more jobs and residents away from deteriorating blue-state models.

Texas’s (and others’) job creation is thanks in no small part to simply saying “Yes!” to opportunities for oil-and-gas production, by the way. It makes it all the more galling that the Obama administration is stalling on oil-and-gas permits and dilly-dallying with the Keystone XL pipeline when there are well-paying, private-sector jobs readily waiting in the wings.

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