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Fact-checking the Republican response

By Louis Jacobson
Published on Thursday, January 26th, 2012 at 3:05 p.m.

Calling the state of the country "grave," Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels quickly zeroed in on the central issue of the presidential campaign: the economy.

Daniels conceded that Obama didn’t create the current crisis, but "he cannot claim that the last three years have made things anything but worse," he said in the nationally televised address.

One example he cited was unemployment. "Nearly half of all persons under 30 did not go to work today," Daniels said.

We looked at Bureau of Labor Statistics figures and found that Daniels’ statement ignores the glaring fact that many people under 30 are in high school and college. Still more, such as stay-at-home parents, choose not to work.

Daniels also went after another favorite Republican target: the economic stimulus package. He said that Steve Jobs, the late founder of Apple, created more jobs than the $800 billion spending plan.

While taking into account the many disparities between a well-established company and a short-term government spending package, we still found Daniels’ numbers to be way off the mark.

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Researchers: Louis Jacobson, Molly Moorhead

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