April 11th, 2012
01:39 PM ET
2 years ago

Romney's claim on female jobs loss: Missing context

(CNN) – Mitt Romney, eager to close the persistent gender gap opening up between himself and President Barack Obama, has begun using an eyebrow-raising statistic on the campaign trail.

"Did you know that of all the jobs lost during the Obama years, 92.3% are women? During the Obama years, women have suffered," Romney told a crowd Tuesday in Pennsylvania.

He made the claim again Wednesday in an interview on Fox News, saying "Over 92% of the jobs lost under this president were lost by women. His polices have been really a war on women."

An analysis of federal labor statistics shows that the claim is technically true but is missing important context.

The number of non-farm employed women from January 2009, when Obama took office, to March 2012 did fall far more than the number of employed men in that period. The total job loss for the period for both men and women combined was 740,000. The number of women who lost non-farm jobs in that timespan was 683,000, according to figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

That amounts to 92.3% - the figure Romney cites in his campaign talking point. However, the statistic does not reflect that men constituted a much larger chunk of the job loss pie in the year leading up to Obama’s inauguration.

In the 2008 calendar year, men lost a total of 2.7 million non-farm jobs, compared to 895,000 jobs lost for women. Men made up 75.4% of the 3.6 million jobs lost that year.

Romney’s claim also does not reflect that job loss for women began in March 2008, almost a full year before Obama took office. At that point, women held a total of 67.3 million non-farm payroll jobs, the highest level of female employment of the Bush administration. From that high point, the number of women with non-farm payroll jobs fell for 23 consecutive months, spanning from the final 10 months of the Bush administration and first 13 months of the Obama administration. Since February 2010, women have actually gained 863,000 jobs.

CNN Political Research Director Robert Yoon contributed to this report.

Also see:

Romney on Santorum: 'This has been a good day for me'

Louisiana governor endorses Romney

Crossroads GPS to drop $1.7 million against Obama


Filed under: 2012 • Jobs • Mitt Romney
soundoff (94 Responses)
  1. SUBS 4 VOTES

    Stop distorting facts Willard. YOU LIE!!!

    April 11, 2012 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  2. Lisa P

    Thank you CNN. I thought that 92% figure sounded fishy and (no surprise) it was. Personally I don't think it's fair to claim that Obama is somehow responsible for the job losses in the first few months of his Presidency either - it's not like the economy, or policies, change overnight - but the Republicans seem to like to pretend that the whole world was suddenly created out of nothingness on January 20, 2009 so what are you going to do?

    April 11, 2012 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  3. iTALIAN NONNO

    Nice try Mr. Flip-Flop. You're not going to get the women vote, ..no matter how you spin it. Romney and the Republicans have launched a full frontal assault on women,.. and they're not likely to forgive or forget.

    April 11, 2012 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  4. Sniffit

    Yes, but the Changeling isn't interested in context and neither is his target audience. All he and they are interested in is the cynical, condescending playground politics of "I know you are but what am I' in an attempt to mitigate the damage the GOP/Teatrolls have done to themselves and their candidate by trying to destroy PP, decrease women's reproductive freedom, control women's health choices and attenuate women's access to repruductive and gender-specific health services...all things they have been attempting to do WHILE DOING NOTHING ABOUT THE ECONOMY. I have full confidence that this strategery will blow up in Mittens' because it is sopurely condescending and insulting to women to believe they can be manipulated like this...with some half-truth, out-of-context, talking point blather that hopes to distract them from the GOP/Teatrolls' abhorrent legislative record around the country with respect to women's rights and issues.

    April 11, 2012 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  5. Willis

    Man, Mitt, you sure do make up some MARVELOUS lies. NO MAJIC UNDERWEAR FOR YOU TODAY

    April 11, 2012 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  6. king

    mitten and his spin machine. fox must be coaching this guy. how can 93 pecent of women lost their jobs, when 75 percent of the people who lost jobs were men, thats facts romney not a fox news spin. finally cnn is fact checking this lying, and letting think twice about feeding his gullibles lies to change a fact. romney has to be in the top 3 or 4 of the lyingest candidate ever to run for the president office. cnn i want you to compare romney against other president candidates in the lying department and tell your viewers what you come up with.

    April 11, 2012 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  7. Thomas

    Romney's facts are wrong !

    April 11, 2012 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  8. Niko_in_Richmond

    Romney and his campaign taking information out of context? Please say it isn't so. Mitt has proven that he's an honorable and upstanding politician, so I just don't believe it. Romney will lie about his own record if he thinks it will help him win the presidency. Oh, wait! He has done that too...

    April 11, 2012 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  9. Myviewis

    Unfortunately, we women think with the heart not the head, most women are not as financially oriented as men and therefore women will vote based on Obama's charm, his promises to take care of us women more than the guy who says to us learn to take care of yourself, stand on your own, be in control.

    April 11, 2012 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  10. Ron

    Reading comprehension must not be your strong suit. Job losses were from January 2009 to March 2012. This was NOT just the first few months of his Presidency. must be those rose colored glasses.

    April 11, 2012 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  11. RealityBites

    Nice spin job from CNN's collaberating political unit.., but it still doesn't change the fact that they are indeed "technically true". Or that during the Obama years, women have suffered

    April 11, 2012 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  12. Four and The Door

    How about the ones who are really taking the hit for Obama's reckless spending? The children. And their kids. And their grandkids. Because they are in more debt than we ever had to worry about, almost 40% of it just in the last 3 years. I hope they have a strong work ethic because they have some tremendous interest charges added to their federal tax bill. Not only that, but they have a larger, more expensive government to support, too. Good luck, kids.

    April 11, 2012 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  13. Florida Joe

    Romney? Lying? A liar on Fox? Insert shocked look here!!
    This clown will say ANYTHING to be elected

    April 11, 2012 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  14. Richard T.

    How many women lost employment due to Bain Capital?

    April 11, 2012 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  15. ST

    The problem of Romney is that he wants to win while going negative. He did it to Santorum and now he is doing it again to win the Presidency. He has no clue at all what to sell to people. Has he used his six years preparing himself how to go negative? and how should we think about him???

    April 11, 2012 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  16. cali girl

    You're a blowhard Robmey, no thanks and no way, no how, no shape or form. Women know about the economy and most of your rethug counterparts have been voting to deny equal pay rights.
    Women also know how to budget and make things work during tough times. We keep supporting the family through it all.
    We will all remember what your true agenda is, and that is to tear apart a womans body for what? So you can mandate what we can and can't do with our bodies?
    November will come and women have a nack for remembering all you said you plan to do to us. I would think the gays, limmigrants, poor, educated elite snobs and everyone else in the 99% agree.

    April 11, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  17. Jamie from Riverside

    As usual, Romney lies.
    He should be selling used cars, oh wait, he wanted to kill that industry.

    April 11, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  18. michaelam

    QUIT LYING!
    You insult the intelligence of all women, Mittens....we do not need to be coddled nor do we need "facts" according to R-Money spelled out for us. We can research and draw our own conclusions. I do not speak for ALL women but I know I speak for many--Obama-2012!

    April 11, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  19. Lynda/Minnesota

    Unfreaking believeable. I can't even begin to think that his advisers are helping him much if this is the drivel they (he) thinks is going to pass muster in the general election. Women weren't born yesterday, Mittens, and condescension isn't going to get you their respect or votes. Romney's recent comments regarding personhood alone suggest his pandering days have long since been quashed, and for him to continue in this mode of campaign pandering will not serve him in as positive a light as his primary campaign pandering seems to have done.

    April 11, 2012 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  20. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Myview.. – Women think with their heart and not with their head? For a woman, you sure know little about women.

    April 11, 2012 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  21. Republican who supports President Obama

    Look closely at the picutre and you will see something interesting. How diverse is the crowd (and I am not talking about men/women)?.....hmmmmm...... This guy is playing it safe by catering to one group.

    April 11, 2012 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  22. Dave

    Obama's record has hurt women, minorities, the poor, etc. Debt and deficits don't work and will not work!

    April 11, 2012 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  23. spartan74

    Romney could get away with his lies when all he was talking to were misinformed and ignorant conservatives. Now that he's the republican candidate, he's going to have to start telling the truth because the Progressives know what the truth is and we'll call him on it every time he tells a lie or distorts the truth. Good luck Mr. Etch-a-Sketch. You're dead meat and you don't even know it.

    April 11, 2012 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  24. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Personhood candidate Mittens has gotten all the Taliban talking points. Has he ever told the truth?

    April 11, 2012 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  25. Willis

    Mittens, why you be hatin all up in there & manufacturing those lies. Bad mormon.. Joe smith Brigham are so dissapointed. No majic underwear for you this month.

    April 11, 2012 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
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