A True Maryland Unemployment Story

The fact that Maryland’s unemployment number is at 6.4% for August (and higher than the national average) comes as no surprise to those who continue to be unemployed or underemployed. To them, that number may seem too small. It is.

The Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) publishes data on unemployment each month. The standard unemployment figure does not count those who are underemployed or workers who have dropped out of the labor market because they have become discouraged. We all know someone who has just given up on finding a job or is working part-time but wants to work full-time. Those folks are not even counted in the traditional unemployment report.

BLS does publish a separate report that includes “alternative measure of labor underutilization” to give a more realistic picture of unemployment. If you look at the most recent BLS U-6 chart (counting total unemployment, plus underemployment and job market dropouts) covering the third quarter of 2013 through second quarter 2014 you’re in for a shock. Our U-6 figure is a staggering 11.7%.

That means that 11.7% of all Marylanders are either unemployed, underemployed or have just given up. Does 11.7% sound like economic recovery to you?

That’s not all of the bad news. A leading Maryland economist recently stated that Maryland led the nation in job losses for August and is currently ranked 44th nationally in year over year job growth.

“Governing for Results” has been a theme of Governor O’Malley’s tenure. These are not results you will see in any of his feel-good press releases. The O’Malley-Brown administration has proudly supported economic decisions that may feel good for liberals, but are very bad for Maryland.

The House Republican Caucus is consistent in its support of responsible state spending, as well as laws and regulations that support the businesses and workers of Maryland. We want every citizen to have the opportunity to work and be live their lives without the burden of ever-increasing taxes and regulations that have been imposed on them by Democrats. Our caucus continues to fight for you.

Maryland Republican Leadership Issues Statement on Gov. Rick Perry’s Visit to Maryland

Annapolis, Md. – House and Senate Republican Leaders and the State Republican Party issued the following joint statement today commenting on Texas Governor Rick Perry’s Visit to Maryland:

“It is no surprise that Gov. Rick Perry sees Maryland’s businesses as ripe for a cross country move to Texas, or anywhere else for that matter. Governor O’Malley’s record of more than 70 tax and fee increases, loss of more than 90,000 jobs, and an increasingly unfriendly business climate are just the tip of the iceberg forcing Maryland’s business owners out of the state.

But there is another option. The fixes needed to ignite the economy in Maryland are simple. We must make our tax rates competitive. By doing this one thing, small and large business will not be tempted out of state to far away places like Texas or to tax-friendly neighbor states like Virginia.

Instead of following Gov. Perry to Texas, business owners should stay and fight with their vote. We can put Maryland back on track if we elect a Republican Governor next year, along with many new Republican Delegates and Senators. Republican legislators continue to present business-friendly budgets and policies and fight the tax and spend Democrat myopia. Maryland can be a business-friendly state; we just need disgruntled citizens, business owners and tax payers to use their vote to de-throne the Democratic establishment.”

Governor O’Malley – Just Out of Touch

Governor O’Malley has proven that he is out of touch with the realities of ordinary life in Maryland. 

With gas prices at $4 a gallon and climbing, Maryland drivers will soon experience even more pain courtesy of Governor O’Malley.  Coming this fall, they will be subject to whopping toll increases – a 100% increase at the Chesapeake Bay Bridge alone.  Not only that, but O’Malley is already laying the groundwork to push for an increased tax on gas during the fall Special Session.  This is all coming at a time when Maryland’s economy is hurting and ordinary citizens are having trouble finding jobs. Maryland’s unemployment rate is 7.3%, and that isn’t likely to improve any time soon with major companies like Northrop Grumman planning to cut over 200 jobs in Maryland by the end of the month.  This in addition to the 600 voluntary buyouts the company has planned in our state.  Last year, that company chose to locate its headquarters in Virginia rather than in Maryland.  With Maryland ranked as the 45th worst state to do business in, it’s likely that other large companies will be making choices similar to the one Northrop Grumman made, forcing out-of-work Marylanders to either commute or re-locate out of state.

Perhaps the reason that the governor seems so out of touch with the realities of Maryland employment numbers is that no one in his inner-circle has trouble finding jobs – in fact, several of them have been on the taxpayer dole for years.  The Governor himself has gone from City Council to Mayor and then to Governor (and all the time he spends picking on Governor Chris Christie makes you think he’s looking for a national run sometime soon). First Lady Katie O’Malley received a Glendenning appointment to a 10-year term as an Associate Judge to the First District Court of Maryland in 2001.  This was two years after her brother, Max Curran, received a Glendenning appointment to a 6-year term on the Maryland Public Service Commission.  (Max by the way just landed a job with O’Malley Enemy #1, Constellation Energy.  That should make family dinners interesting).  Governor O’Malley’s father-in-law, Joseph Curran III, has been a Delegate, a Senator, and the longest-serving Attorney General in Maryland’s history.  Not wanting his father in law to get bored counting his pension dollars, O’Malley appointed Curran to chair the Sex Offender Advisory Board.  But, the nepotism doesn’t stop there.  The Gov’s baby brother, Peter O’Malley not content in his post at the Maryland Democratic Party, is about to start a new job as Chief of Staff for the Mayor of Baltimore.  It isn’t hard to find work when you know people. 

But you know, maybe we’re being too hard on the Governor.  After all, he wants to give you a job too (well, if your name is Jeeves that is).  A job listing posted Thursday on the Department of General Services website seeks a Housekeeper/Butler for Government House, the home of Maryland’s governor. Starting in the mid-$30,000s, the salary is negotiable. So nice that he could open his doors and hire one of the unwashed masses.  If you’re having problems finding a job because Martin O’Malley has run employers out of the state, don’t worry!  The Governor has a job for you, provided of course that you don’t mind washing the “First Underpants”.