Jonathan Starkey did some truth checking on the Obama administration and the Senate Democrats in the Sunday News Journal and found that they may have stretched the truth a little concerning how many jobs were “saved or created” by the Advanced Technology Vehicles program. It was used to funnel federal money big Democrat fundraisers such as John Doerr of Fisker fame. This is the program that Harry Reid and the Senate Democrats found to be more important than disaster relief funds and so voted to shut down the government this Friday rather than lose their slush fund.
Beware of gov’t jobs numbers
In a bill to fund disaster aid and other government functions this week, Republicans in Washington targeted a Department of Energy loan program designed to promote energy efficiency in cars by investing in clean-car manufacturers.
The Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing loans program, which Republicans are trying to slash by $1.5 billion, has significance locally: Fisker Automotive leveraged a $529 million loan to purchase the Newport-area auto plant that General Motors in 2009. (According to company officials and politicians, Fisker’s loan is not in jeopardy.)
Nonetheless, Democrats have opposed the cuts, saying the program has created about 40,000 jobs at a time of high unemployment. Judging by their math in Delaware, there’s reason to be skeptical about the numbers.
The Department of Energy’s website says the Fisker loan has created or saved 2,000 jobs. Currently, there are actually fewer than 100 people working in the plant. Fisker hopes to ramp employment to as high as 2,500 people, but that may depend on the company meeting its volume projections of 100,000+ sales a year. Even in the best case scenario, Fisker won’t ramp to full production until 2013/14 at the earliest, the company says. A smart investment perhaps, but hardly a stimulative one.
It makes one wonder if the math on the rest of the 40,000 jobs is similar.
I am shocked! I am both shocked that the feds and Harry Reid would exaggerate and that the News Journal would allow truth checking the administration to go on. Mr. Starkey may need to be wary of that “tap on the shoulder.”
There was another good post on this subject.