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Toward the end of last year – when the South Carolina unemployment rate was dropping like a rock – we pointed out how most of the new jobs being created were government positions. We’ve also been consistently pointing out how – despite a rash of recent taxpayer-subsidized “economic development” announcements – the state’s labor participation rate is hovering at record lows (well below the national average).

Bearing all of this out is a new report released by Business Journals which paints a substantially less-than-flattering portrait of S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley – who has branded herself as America’s “Jobs Governor.”

According to the report, Haley ranks 34th out of 45 governors surveyed when it comes to private sector job creation (five governors were not ranked because they entered office in 2013).

The Business Journals report “analyzed private-sector employment levels in each state during the tenure of its current governor, using seasonally adjusted data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics.”

“The score for each governor is based on a comparison of the annual growth rate for his or her state and the corresponding figure for the other 49 states,” the publication notes.

During her two-plus years in office, private sector employment in South Carolina has increased from 1,475,600 to 1,524,000 – a 1.39 percent increase.

“It’s a great day in South Carolina,” right?

Wrong … because private sector job growth in other states is averaging 1.99 percent. In fact there is a “jobs gap” of 21,000 between newly created private sector positions in the Palmetto State and those created in other states.

Last week South Carolina Democrats launched their first foray against Haley’s economic record – citing a host of statistics which show the state’s economic growth as being far less robust than Haley has portrayed it. We suspect they will pounce on this report as the latest evidence of that reality.

Haley, incidentally, has been busted in the past inflating South Carolina’s job creation numbers – as well as making other, more bizarre claims about our state’s workforce.

She’s also president over one of the nation’s least transparent systems of bribing companies to locate here with your tax dollars …

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Pic: Travis Bell Photography