The Romney campaign responded that “Mitt Romney helped create more jobs in his private sector experience and more jobs as Governor of Massachusetts than President Obama has for the entire nation.”
Romney’s jobs claims deserve serious scrutiny. According to the Associated Press, Massachusetts added 24,400 net jobs while Romney was governor. The state ranked forty-seventh out of fifty in job growth during that time.
The number of jobs Romney presided over at Bain has varied widely according to his own estimates. When he ran against Ted Kennedy in 1994, Romney said he created 10,000 jobs while at Bain. During the 2012 presidential campaign, Romney’s campaign has claimed he created “over 100,000 new jobs,” “tens of thousands jobs” and “thousands of jobs” at Bain. It’s impossible to know if any of these figures are accurate—every time the Romney campaign is pressed on the details, the number of jobs he created at Bain seems to decrease.
“If he is to continue to make claims about job creation, the Romney campaign needs to provide a real accounting of how many jobs were gained or lost through Bain Capital investments while the firm managed these companies—and while Romney was chief executive,” wrote Washington Post fact-checker Glenn Kessler. “Any jobs counted after either of those data points simply do not pass the laugh test.” He gave Romney’s “over 100,000 new jobs” created “three Pinocchio’s,” which represents a “significant factual error and/or obvious contradictions.” In another analysis, Kessler wrote that “[Romney’s] campaign offered no definitive proof that Bain added more jobs than it eliminated while Romney headed the firm.”