Allen West Tells Obama to Get Out of South Florida, Fudges "Obamanomics" Numbers

Categories: WTFlorida
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​Welcome to another post in our Allen West Fact Party series, in which we take claims made by the District 22 Republican and attempt to figure out whether they have a basis in reality. In case you were wondering, they usually don't.

Today's fact-check comes from not one but two Facebook accounts of Congressman Allen West. On his main account yesterday, he posted a statement about President Obama's campaign swing through South Florida, telling him to "turn the airplane around and go back to Washington DC, we here in South Florida can do well without your lies." West went on:

President Obama is in South Florida today to promote his idea of economic fairness... completely intellectually dishonest. The "Buffett Rule" which the Obamanista spinmeisters have created -- is nothing more than divisive rhetoric not based on any economic reality, just empty political gimmickry.
First of all, mad props for "Obamanista spinmeisters." That's awesome.

Now, onto West's criticism for Obama's "empty political gimmickry" and being "completely intellectually dishonest," because West's chucking "you're a liar" stones from inside a big, patriotic glass toolshed.

Right around the same time as the "get on your plane with your lies" statement, West's campaign posted a very attractive graphic outlining "The Effects of Obamanomics."

It looks a bit sparse written out, but somebody over there is really talented with the picture-making. Here's what West says the president has done:
  • Increased the national debt by over $5 trillion
  • 9.4% unemployment rate in Florida
  • 1 in 7 Americans on food stamps
  • 1 in 4 homes underwater
Let's just go down the list and see if Obamanomics really are to blame. The first two points get tackled today; the second two will get looked at tomorrow Friday morning.

1. Obamanomics increased the national debt by over $5 trillion.
This one's easy -- he's wrong.

It's a claim that was debunked months ago. If you look at the general numbers, it seems to be true: Obama took office with a $10.5 trillion national debt, and now it's around $15.2 trillion.

But to say it's all Obama's fault is, well, completely intellectually dishonest.

The stimulus cost $874 billion. That's on Obama, sure. And the 2010 deal to extend the Bush tax cuts added $600 billionish to his tally.

But what else has Obama been spending money on? The health-care law, whether or not it reduces deficits like the Congressional Budget Office says it will, isn't a factor thus far. The $224 billion housing bailout passed under George Bush, and it'd be really hard not to pin the $853 billion spent through 2008 in Iraq and Afghanistan on Bush as well.

The Washington Post's Ezra Klein laid it out at the end of January, and his handy infographic reveals that the Bush tax cuts -- before Obama (and Congress) extended them -- have been the single largest hit to the national debt of the past decade. They cost $1.8 trillion, much of which got added to the debt after Obama took office. At the end of it, even if you completely ignore projected savings from Obamacare, Obama's debt impact adds up to just over $1 trillion through 2017 -- nowhere near the juicy $5 trillion being thrown around because some people think "subtraction" is an astute financial observation.

If you don't believe the Post, the New York Times has another graph showing similar calculations. And if you don't believe the Post or the Times, well, you might as well stop reading now, because there's nothing here for you.

2. Obamanomics caused Florida's 9.4 percent unemployment rate.
There's no limit to the ways you can add political spin to a recession -- you can say it's Bush's fault, you can say Obama made it worse, you can say if it weren't for that goddamned Glass-Steagall Act, we'd have an American base on the moon. There are too many factors to sit down and prove one way or another whether Big Barack Hussein is responsible for the millions of currently unemployed Floridians.

There is one thing you can prove, though -- many more Floridians lost jobs under Bush than under Obama.

Florida's unemployment hit a low in January 2006, according to data from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. It was at positively idyllic 3.3 percent but soon started shooting up, and up... and up.

By February 2009, the unemployment rate had almost tripled, to 9.2 percent. There's no blaming him for that -- the economy died, and then he showed up, in conditions that the Florida Center for Fiscal and Economic Policy said could take years and years to rebound from.

After that, though, it gets fuzzy -- Florida's unemployment rate then jumped to an insane 11.4 percent in February 2010, one year into Obama's term. Can you blame him for that? Ask a Republican and the answer is, "Oh yeah, totally -- he ruins everything." Ask a Democrat and you'll get the opposite.

In any case, you run into the same problem when trying to dole out credit for the subsequent rebound -- today's 9.4 percent is still a high number, but it's a 17.5 percent improvement from two years ago.

The bottom line is that Florida's unemployment is essentially at the same level it was when Obama took office and is on a sharp decline rather than a crazy upward slope -- check out the graph if you don't believe me.

If there's evidence that the Florida jobs mess is Obama's fault, West didn't offer it, but nobody will ever be able to point to one thing and say, "It was that." But it's an election year, and West earns street cred for attacking the president, so Obamanomics gets blamed -- even if the numbers don't back it up.



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20 comments
farmrdave
farmrdave

 Rich Abdill,  I cannot understand what Obamanonics has to do with Allen West but I like talking about the damage done to our country by Obama.  First, you may wonder what Obama has done for us since he was elected.  He has devalued our money, what does that mean to you?  It means that if you happened to be a hard worker that saved their extra money in the bank for retirement, to buy a home, or for collage for the kids, or any reason you will be happy to know that Obama's actions with the bailouts has reduced the value of your money much faster than it has earned interest and it has given billions in empty money to banks, foreign countries, wars, and many things that even Congress does not know about. Second he is not following a path that promotes the American dream.  His actions always go toward increasing regulations and taxes.  These Regs and taxes especially taxes on businesses are killing jobs every day.  Obama and his cronies are promoting the biggest hoax ever perpetrated on the human race "man caused global warming".  This hoax is designed for one purpose.  It is to aid in controlling everything.  Control of your life and mine.  Removal of freedom at the whim of a bureaucrat who will be appointed and not elected.  If all goes as planned soon we will have to recycle our cars and buy new ones that comply with the global warming hoax and they will in the end pollute as much as the one we have now but will have the stamp of approval which you will pay for for decades instead of years of your labor.  Third we have right now going into effect the biggest tax and largest loss of freedoms ever imagined, it is called the "health care plan"  Government involvement in healthcare over the last 4 or five decades has driven the cost of visiting a doctor so high that one must pay a monthly fee to a insurance company who in turn pays your doctor when you visit one.  Forty years ago a doctor visit cost about half a days wages for the average worker, now just to have an appointment is $125 or more.  If you need treatment you better go get a second mortgage on your home (if you are lucky enough to have one).  We really do not know yet what damage will come of this new health plan but rest assured if history is accurate (which it is) since it was perpetrated by bureaucrats it will be expensive and ineffective.  To you Rich Abdill I have one question.  Why should the government do for our citizens what they can do, and do better, for themselves? 

farmrdave
farmrdave

river you need to understand I know what I know from working for a living and from thinking, {did you hear that?).  Anyone who observes and thinks will know I am telling it like it is.  Maybe if you listened and stopped the name calling you would have time to learn something.

BLR
BLR

Obama envy at its best!  I bet he secretly has a man crush on the president.

Anita_farmer
Anita_farmer

I THINK Allen West should sign up for 5 or so more years in the Marines....they always need good aid and leadership...he could put his skills to good use helping out those young bucks there...because it's looking like he's  going into that Sara Palin bag....making no sense whatsoevere..... very disappointed in him.....

farmrdave
farmrdave

 You must not have understood my comment.  I am slinging a bit of mudd on you commenters as you are calling Allen West bad names for pointing out what is obvious to many and that is the fact that liberalism and communism are basically one and the same.  Don't you dream the American dream?  Don't you want to spend what you earn on what you wish?  Go where you wish when you wish to without asking permission?  Keep your head in the sand and live with hope and change and see what you get.  I am an American who feels that our fight against socialism in many wars and other efforts toward personal freedom is the American dream and it is what has made this a good place to live and raise families.  Now I see the "liberal movement" as a quick path to destruction of the dream.  What confounds me is that so many otherwise intelligent persons seem unable to grasp what is happening right in the open, broadcast on major television, right in our own government.  If you wish to keep freedom as a part of your life and maintain it for your offspring you will vote against all forms of Communism/liberalism/socialism.  Listen closely when lips are moving and you will hear the lies.

farmrdave
farmrdave

I am not familiar with Rep Allen West until I read the headline about 78 to 81 congressmen are communists.  I do not know if that is a fact or not and as for most of the posts here I also do not know of the truths of other remarks made here or by Allen West.  I do know that at each Obama speech I can tell when he is lying.  It is when his lips are moving.  I think youall cementers should cut a bit of slack for Allen West in this regard.

Ed
Ed

YOU GET OUT OF SOUTH FLORIDA YOU PIECE OF SHIT...

KennyPowersII
KennyPowersII

West has taken the concept of  " attention whore " to new heights.

Joel Valez Stokes
Joel Valez Stokes

West is not the brightest bulb in the chandelier but he is a straight faced liar...who the hell voted this neanderthal into office?

Roger
Roger

Why does everyone need to take a side? Its hard to learn whats really going on when everything is so one sided. Both democrats and republicans have good ideas and faults. There is no doubt this writer is a democrat and Obama as done no wrong. Ok, try owning a small Bissiness

Lifelong Dem
Lifelong Dem

Alien West is the Ozzie Guillen of politics.

gimmesamore
gimmesamore

Could someone point me to one piece of legislation this guy has created?  This tea party experiment gone wrong is not even relevant.  You know your star is waning when Palin suggests you as the VP candidate!  What a joke.

By the way, I saw one of his bumper stickers on one of my family member's cars the other day.  She said someone stuck it on there while she was shopping at Publix.  The damn thing won't come off the car.  I guess even his bumper stickers suck!

Ethan Oringel
Ethan Oringel

ALLEN WEST, YOU LIE!

Join over 120 of us from the 22nd congressional district, the 18th congressional district and beyond who are dedicated to ending his congressional career.

facebook dot com/groups/325005804195316/

He must be fired from Congress for his relentless dishonesty and flat-out insane remarks.

West Sucks
West Sucks

Allen West is a douchebag liar, hate monger, oh and a COWARD who is running away from a fight Broward.  Guess you know all about getting out of South Florida.  If he goes far North enough he might end up in the deep South where his repugnant views are more palatable.  BTW those graphics look like they were done by a 5 year old swiping icons off the internet and filling the margins with lies. WAFJ.

Pete Pepper
Pete Pepper

Its nice that the criminal West continues to show everyone that he knows exactly one thing about the running of the country..and that is nothing.

Anita_farmer
Anita_farmer

I think he should go back into the Marines.....if they'll have him....was he an orig teaperson???

Rich Abdill
Rich Abdill

I'm totally with you with the notion that both parties have their faults. But West doesn't have a problem lying to score cheap points, and somebody has to check him on it. Owning a small Bissiness wouldn't change the fact that his numbers are misleading -- and as a congressman with a staff of people to check these things for him, it can't be an accident.

Rich Abdill
Rich Abdill

He's sponsored nine bills, but none have been enacted. He had one pass the House last year, but it died in the Senate. To be fair, though, freshmen congressmen usually don't make a huge impact with that.

Links mess up my comments, but if you Google "GovTrack" you can check out West's legislation on their site.

Roger
Roger

Business Sorry for confusing you Joel. It was the auto type on the iPhone my friend.

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