Glenn Youngkin splits hairs when Virginia job numbers are good, saying the good news is about his policies, not at all a factor of the continued growth at the national level post-pandemic under President Biden.
Predictably, the slight uptick in Virginia’s unemployment rate in the October jobs report was blamed in a release from the governor’s office on Friday on, you guessed it, Biden.
“This month’s labor force participation and jobs numbers reflect slowing national trends and the risks posed by inflation and increased interest rates,” Youngkin said in a statement in the release from his office.
“These storm clouds increase the importance of our pro-business economic agenda,” Youngkin said. “Our focus must remain on reducing the cost of doing business, so that companies continue to invest, grow and hire in Virginia, advancing workforce and talent development, and reducing the cost of living so more families call Virginia home.”
The “slowing national trends” line harkens back to Youngkin’s now-shuttered presidential ambitions, when he had this to say, just last month, about the September jobs report that showed a slight dip in unemployment.
“As inflation driven by reckless spending at the federal level continues to cost Virginians more, the continued resiliency of Virginia’s economy demonstrates that our focus on lowering the cost of living and delivering billions in tax relief for families, veterans and workers is moving the Commonwealth forward,” Youngkin said then.
The reality here is, Virginia’s economy is inexplicably intertwined with the fortunes of the federal government.
A recent analysis has 13.9 percent of the state’s labor force either directly employed by the federal government or government contractors, and 9 percent of the state’s GDP is the result of national defense spending.
And the news locally is that Waynesboro is going to soon be in on those trends. It was just announced on Tuesday that Northrop Grumman is planning to build a $200 million advanced electronics manufacturing and testing facility in the City of Waynesboro, creating more than 300 jobs over the next five years as the 315,000-square-foot state-of-the-art facility comes online.
Youngkin’s quote in a press release from his office on that:
“Northrop Grumman’s expanding Virginia footprint sends a powerful message that the Commonwealth is a magnet for investment underpinned by a next-generation workforce. This global leader’s cutting-edge facility in Waynesboro will provide job opportunities that attract and retain high-quality talent and create a transformational ripple effect for the entire region.”
As Youngkin well knows, Northrop Grumman is only expanding because of all of that “reckless spending” on the defense sector that he pretends not to like.
He can have it both ways in the press releases from his office that we’re paying for with our tax dollars, but not here.