By Ted Dabrowski & John Klingner -
In his budget address on Wednesday, Gov. Quinn touted the number of jobs that have been created during the past two years. The governor would have you believe that Illinois' job crisis is over. But that's far from the truth.
As today's labor release from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows, Illinois' unemployment rate jumped to 9 percent, a 0.4 percent increase over December's 8.6 percent rate. Even before the increase in January, Illinois had the 9th highest unemployment rate in the nation.
The increase is due to almost 23,000 Illinoisans rejoining the workforce to look for work again. Unfortunately, Illinois’s worsening economic climate means there is very little work to find.
The state’s unemployment rate is now nearly the same as it was one full year ago, when the unemployment rate stood at 9.1 percent.
And when compared to our neighbors, the difference is even more pronounced. The average unemployment rate of our neighbors in December 2012 was just 7.0 percent.
This is more evidence that Quinn’s policies have done little to turn around the state’s economy. In fact, they’ve made things worse. When Quinn hypes his employment numbers, he should remember that nearly 600,000 people in Illinois wake up every day without a job.
Ted Dabrowski is Vice President of Policy at the Illinois Policy Institute. John Klingner is the Institute's Public Policy Research Assistant