Sunday, October 26th, 2014

Our May High Five

Our analysis of how Gov. Scott Walker, shown in this AP photo at a Racine plant, has started talking about jobs was our most-clicked item for May 2014.
Our analysis of how Gov. Scott Walker, shown in this AP photo at a Racine plant, has started talking about jobs was our most-clicked item for May 2014.

Our analysis of Gov. Scott Walker’s new way of talking about job creation topped PolitiFact Wisconsin’s High Five for May, our list of the most-clicked items for the month.

Lagging on his promise to create 250,000 private-sector jobs in his four-year term, Walker has started framing the topic of jobs a different way, saying that 17,000 new ready-to-hire businesses have sprung up since he took office.

Our analysis showed that these new "business entities" include hundreds of nonprofit groups, including scout troops and condo associations, as well as thousands of limited liability corporations set up by real-estate investors solely to hold ownership of properties.

In short, in addition to new ventures that bring new jobs, in thousands of cases there are no workers on the payroll at all -- and no little if any prospect of hires to come.

Here’s a look at the other most-clicked items from last month.

2. With the launch of another Congressional investigation into the terrorist attacks against Americans in Benghazi, U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson claimed the State Department, led at the time by Hillary Rodham Clinton, cut security in Libya.

We rated Johnson’s claim True. State Department headquarters in Washington refused repeated requests from Ambassador Chris Stevens in Libya for more security personnel. And the department  decided not to accept an offer from the Defense Department to extend the stay of one of its security units in Libya, reducing the level of security that was available.

Ambassador Stevens and three other Americans died in the attacks.

3.  Walker’s top 2010 campaign promise create 250,000 jobs has been among our most-viewed items each month. With time running out, the jobs count is about 101,000 -- less than half of what the governor promised.

The state must add about 18,000 jobs a month for each remaining month of the year for Walker to meet his promise. That’s appearing increasingly impossible.

In May, we moved this promise from In the Works to Stalled on the Walk-O-Meter.

4. Back to Benghazi, Clinton and Johnson. PolitiFact readers clicked an In Context item from last year regarding Clinton’s January 2013 appearance before a Senate committee that included Johnson.

The dust-up was back in the news thanks to the launch of more Benghazi hearings.

In the original exchange, Johnson told Clinton that Americans were misled by administration officials who claimed the attacks were stirred by protests and "that was easily ascertained that that was not the fact. "

"Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night and decided they’d go kill some Americans," Clinton said. "What difference – at this point, what difference does it make?"

5.  Democrat candidate for governor Mary Burke said there is no evidence that Wisconsin’s private school voucher program improves student performance.

Public school students consistently outperformed voucher students on statewide test scores from 2011 to 2014. One study held up by choice advocates shows only limited instances in which voucher students performed better. We rated Burke’s statement Mostly True.