Yael T. Abouhalkah

New jobs report is an utter disaster for Kansas and Brownback

A new jobs report revealed, once again, that Gov. Sam Brownback’s income tax cuts are not leading to an explosion of jobs in Kansas.
A new jobs report revealed, once again, that Gov. Sam Brownback’s income tax cuts are not leading to an explosion of jobs in Kansas. The Associated Press

The new July jobs report released Friday is an utter disaster for Kansans and embattled Gov. Sam Brownback.

Here are the lowlights.

▪ The state lost 5,600 jobs from June to July.

▪ The unemployment rate jumped to 4.1 percent from 3.8 percent in June.

▪ Over the last year, Kansas has actually shed 4,500 jobs.

▪ The Sunflower State’s “growth” rate over that 12 months is a minus 0.3 percent — 5th worst in the nation. Only Wyoming, North Dakota, Louisiana and Oklahoma were behind Kansas.

▪ Kansas had employment of 1,395,700 in July 2016 — or a stunning 600 fewer jobs than when Brownback’s second term started way back in January 2015.

▪ Finally, Kansas is nowhere close to adding the 2,000 jobs a month that Brownback had pledged during his re-election campaign in 2014.

All of this is the kind of bad news that Brownback recently blamed the media for spreading.

But here’s the fact: This information was released by the Kansas Department of Labor and the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

These numbers are not being made up. They are not the result of some group out to get Brownback.

The governor has stated for more than four years that the income tax cuts he signed in 2012 would lead to an explosion of jobs.

That has not happened.

Instead, the state has bounced around employment levels of 1.4 million people for the last two years.

Meanwhile, across the state line in Missouri, that state added 2,100 jobs in July.

And over the last year, the Show-Me State has gained 21,500 in employment, or a growth rate of 0.8 percent. That’s 14th worst in the nation, so nothing to be ecstatic about.

Then again, at least Missouri is not Kansas.

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