Geithner criticizes Romney's 'ridiculous' analysis
April 15th, 2012
11:46 AM ET
9 years ago

Geithner criticizes Romney's 'ridiculous' analysis

(CNN) – Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on Sunday called Mitt Romney's argument that women have been disproportionately affected by the economic downturn "ridiculous."

Geithner said Romney's premise that 92.3% of the jobs lost in the country were among women has been debunked, adding that men, women and families alike have been hurt by the economy.

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"It's a ridiculous and deeply misleading look at the economy," Geithner said on NBC's "Meet the Press." "Remember the recession and the crisis started at the beginning of 2008 before the president took office. It caused a huge amount of damage to men, to women, to families. And the damage lasted for a time, and you're still seeing the scars of that."

Both sides of the political aisle have accused their opponents of waging a "war on women." The latest round of attacks came from likely Republican presidential nominee Romney who has repeatedly blamed Democratic policies for a spike in female job losses.

But Geithner said the crisis "hurt everybody," particularly men in the form of construction and manufacturing jobs in 2008 and later women in the form of state and local government jobs, as well as teaching positions.

An analysis of federal labor statistics showed Romney's claim was technically true, but 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, proving the 92.3% figure. However, since February 2010, women have actually gained 863,000 jobs.

The statistic also does not reflect that men constituted a much larger chunk of the job loss pie in the year leading up to Obama's inauguration.

Geithner pointed to the 2008 start date of the downturn, before Obama took office, to help prove his point that the president is now leading the country toward economic growth.

"The president's policies are making the economy stronger," Geithner said on ABC's "This Week." "And the alternatives proposed by his opposition would be devastating, not just to the safety net, but to investments in education, be very damaging to the economy."

Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul responded to Geithner's comments saying "What's the real risk to America's fiscal future? Four more years of the same failed policies from the Obama administration."

- CNN Political Research Director Robert Yoon contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Tim Geithner
soundoff (288 Responses)
  1. edgar

    Geithner is tax time again. You have two extra days

    April 16, 2012 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  2. Eagle Eye

    I don't think "Little Timmy Tax Cheat" has a leg to stand on because when was the last time he paid his taxes.

    April 16, 2012 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  3. Brian Overseas

    Welp, Romney you have lost my vote. Your speeches are filled with nothing I consider constructive towards our future. It is clear you are banking on people being complete imbeciles when it comes to the election. In short, if Romney hopes at all to gain independent voters than he needs to come down to earth and talk facts, not rhetorical nonsense. This is just a spin on the health care provisions on contraception.... which women jumped on.

    April 16, 2012 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  4. Jill-IN

    It is ridiculous for Mitt Romney to assert that the recession hurt women more and therefore, this was a campaign against women. This recession has hurt all Americans in so many ways and it cuts across all demographics and genders. We are all still paying for the unbudgeted and unpaid wars between 2001 and 2008 as well as the debacle of the big bank corruption and market crash of September 2008. If anyone "planned" this recession and decided in advance who would get left holding the empty bag, it certainly wasn't President Obama. The big banks, financiers, and venture capitalists have all done very well - sure would like to see Mitt Romney release his tax returns for the past 10 years!

    April 16, 2012 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  5. Chris

    To Rudy NYC – I am sure you would agree that President Obama's attacks on his Republican rivals have used misleading facts to establish false talking points. This will continue as he sharpens this rhetoric toward Mitt.

    April 16, 2012 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  6. Dave

    Yes, the recession started before 2008. However, our current President made it much worse. In fact, debt and deficits have gone up not down. Everyone is suffering – including women and minorities. I would trust Romney with the economy far more than the tax cheats.

    April 16, 2012 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  7. WDS

    Mark Twain was correct. There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.

    April 16, 2012 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  8. Mason

    Isn't this the genius that said unemployment would not get over 8% and we have not seen that number since,

    April 16, 2012 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  9. Nick

    Examples of Obama's Flip-Flopping:

    1. Flip-flopped on the individual mandate – was oppposed to it when running against Hillary / Hillarycare then changes mind for Obamacare
    2. Flip-flopped on the Bush tax cuts – was against them then decided to keep them, now he promotes the ineffectual Buffett Rule
    3. Flip-flopped on public financing for campaigns – consented with McCain in 2008 to fund their campaigns on public financing alone then changed his mind
    4. Flip-flopped on Super PACs
    5. Flip-flopped on gay marriage
    6. Flip-flopped on Guantanomo Bay
    7. Flip-flopped on the 1% - rails against Wall Street with OWS people at the same time accepting more money from Wall Street than any President history while failing to prosecute a single executive from the big financial insitutions on Wall Street responsible for 2008 collapse
    8. Flip-flopped on big business – rails against big business for large profits, low tax rates and claims they are responsible for lackluster economy then praises consecutive months of private sector job growth when it is convenient 9. Flip-flopped on Stimulus Package – claimed trillion dollar stimulus would bring unemployment rate to 7%, stimulus money has run out, unemployment still at 8.3%, and now Obama claims stimulus didn't work because it was not large enough
    10. Flip-flopped on intervention in middle east countries – claimed US would not get involved in anymore Middle East military operations and would instead capture terrorists and try them in civilian courts but then authorizes bombing of Libya and drone strikes in Pakistan that targets Pakistani villages and civilians

    The list goes on....

    April 16, 2012 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  10. Guess What

    lookie, its turbo timmy tax cheat with smoke blowing out his mouth and up your skirt.

    April 16, 2012 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  11. Oliver

    Romney knows without closing the gender gap he can not win the presidency. That being said, it'll take more then misleading statements taken from out of context numbers to get women to vote for someone who is anti-abortion and anti-contriception, whose religious beliefs condone multiple wives. Republicans have never been about equality, for women, for latinos, for blacks, for gays, for anyone. I wonder how many execs at Bain were women? The republican party has been a mens club my whole life.

    Look what they did with Sara Palin. They picked her to try to get those disenfranchised Hillary voters, assuming that women would blindly vote for another woman, without any thought that it has always been the ideologies behind the person, not the gender that matters to people. Its no surprise to anyone that feminists align to the left, because democrats have their best interests in mind and have since the women's lib movement began.

    Republicans miss the good old days of the 50's when women stayed at home barefoot in the kitchen, when blacks kept to the ghettos, when gays were beaten to death. Ok Mitt, maybe being a stay at home mother is a full time job...but also is a full time job outside the home. And in this modern world, the middle class can not afford to stay at home. Both parents work and share the financial responsibilities. Romney is completely out of touch with what it means to be middle class, to be a woman, to be anything other then the rich white guy he is.

    April 16, 2012 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  12. ThinkAgain

    Here's how out of touch Mittens is:

    65% of American millionaires and billionaires want to end the Bush tax cuts and pay more in taxes.
    As far back as September 2010, 53% of Americans wanted to end the Bush tax cuts; today, the number is around 72%.

    And yet Mittens clings to the notion that the answer to our nation's economic woes is to make the Bush tax cuts permanent – even though a majority of Americans don't want it AND the Bush tax have NOT resulted in job creation here in the U.S. (in China and India, yes; here, no).

    So, I agree with Geitner: Mittens' ideas ARE ridiculous. We, the American people have decided to stop bankrolling a group of people who are not making good on their promises to improve our economy by investing in the U.S. Time to have them pay their fair share (and incentivize them to invest HERE).

    The rich paying their fair share in taxes is the LEAST they can do for the country that has given them so much.

    Obama/Biden 2012

    April 16, 2012 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  13. snowdogg

    "Mitt Romney is laying the foundation for a reputation for being a misleading and dishonest person. All of his attacks on Pres. Obama have used misleading facts to establish false talking points."


    April 16, 2012 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
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