Geithner criticizes Romney's 'ridiculous' analysis
April 15th, 2012
11:46 AM ET
8 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. musicdorian

    Geithner was the head of the New York FED. Thanks to Alan Greenspan, regulation (after a real regulator name Bill Taylor died), was relegated to the head of the New York FED. This position (Geithner's) was hand picked by the board. This board was made up of some of the heads of the very banks the FED was to oversee. The fox guards the hen house. In his capacity, after being hand chosen by the bankers, Geither worked to reduce the amount of emergency money that banks need to have. This was a major problem in the 2008 crash.

    April 15, 2012 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  2. jb1963

    Romney is a typical republican.
    Say anything no facts required. Anything to sway the naive to vote for him is the only objective.

    April 15, 2012 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  3. Canadian Jim

    Politicians who mis-state statisitcs should be called what they are. Liars. A lie is a lie is a lie, whether you are running for office or not. Half-truthes are lies. I'd llike to hear the Republicans explain what John McCain would have done differently had he been President over the last 3 years and how the economy the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan would be any different. Would Bin Ladin be dead or still hanging out safely in Pakistan.

    April 15, 2012 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  4. Mike in Texas

    Ray E thinks like Romney. He says as soon as the Dems took over congress the economy tanked. He offers no explanation other than "failed" policies and the fact they took over. Romney is doing the same with the unemployment numbers. They are extracting a piece of a big puzzle and putting in a vacuum to appear it exists only as is.

    So please Ray E in Georgia what did the Dems do in 2007 that tanked the economy? Please be specific. Generic talking points and rhetoric do not count as answers.

    April 15, 2012 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  5. CBR

    The blames again is well under way here. No one party caused these problems. The problems are here and we need to fix them. You can call those in the Cabinet positions, the President, and the members of Congress all the names in the world but you will not be solving one problem. Let's stick the to the facts.

    April 15, 2012 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  6. Bill

    Romney may need an extension but at least he pays his taxes, TIMOTHY!

    April 15, 2012 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  7. Timothy

    First thought,Tim Geithner stating facts is like Rosanne Barr giving dieting advice. Hilarious, but not something you would want to follow intentionally. Second thought, context here was the loss of jobs. I understand when you decide not to pay taxes as a Democrat using the old, "I Forgot" Steve Martin line, you really don't know how taxes and government support work. So let's explain. If during a recession, person X loses their job and is a female, then a female has lost a job. Nothing more. The time frame may be chosen to give a larger number for the Romney campaign, but I doubt it. If it is, simply get the numbers for all the following time and publish it. Don't forget to include the 88 million people who have dropped out of the workforce though. Chances are pretty good they are at least 50% female.

    April 15, 2012 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  8. Asherid22

    Another attempt at Mitt-wit to gain some desperately needed votes in November. Polls have shown that more women support the president than Romney. I hope people realize this.

    April 15, 2012 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  9. PaulGeGe

    If every American payed at least $25 dollarsin tax we would be much better off. The argument about taxing rich is nothing more than pathetic politics does very little to the budget or deficit. The problem is the so many unemployed and low income folks pay ZERO. Explain to me everyone paying a fair share OBAMA. The tax percentage of income means nothing is how many dollars you pay that matters.

    April 15, 2012 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |
  10. Martin Walters Seattle

    What matters most is what a potential President is going to do about it. Who knows what Mr. Romney will do? What he says changes with the wind or by the day.

    April 15, 2012 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  11. Pat in IL

    Romney is really starting to make a fool of himself. He needs to step back, take a breath, and start using intelligence and speaking the truth....not just made up sound bites.

    April 15, 2012 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  12. don in albuquerque

    Might as well elect one of the mountain taliban fighters as Mitt. They know as much about middle class America as he does.

    April 15, 2012 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  13. Common Sense

    Mr. "Say no to flipper"- you are seriously misled. "there are no special "smarts" needed to succeed as a vulture capitalist who rips apart companies, screws workers..."

    Seriously? Did you finish the 8th grade? Let's try some math. Let's say a company has 1,000 employees and has misproportioned its funds such that it is slowly, but steadily sinking. What will be the net job gain? -1,000 jobs. What happens, then, if a company who has years of experience in restructuring failing businesses such to make them succeed buys that business? Let's say they realize that in order to NOT go bankrupt, that company has to fire 600 employees? What is the net job change? -600. So, these "smarts"-less "vulture capitalists" of which you speak (while you have ABSOLUTELY no knowledge about the intricacies of business) just SAVED 400 jobs from a dying company.

    Tell me again how that is a bad thing? You may go back to flipping burgers now. Please keep in mind that Mr. Romney's company saved your employer, Burger King, from bankruptcy, and therefore saved your job.

    April 15, 2012 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  14. NKBL

    Not drinking the kool-aid from the GOP, they are neanderthals.

    April 15, 2012 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  15. wade

    The Obama administration doesn't dispute the figure. They simply do not like the truth being told. They want to say it is true but it is not fair to tell the truth on Obama. Talk about being ridiculous. Obama really believes that the law does not apply to him and apparently neither does the truth. The tax cheat Geithner who was the principle behind the collapse of the economy and the mess on wall street and who has failed miserably at his job is now saying the truth is not important and is ridiculous. What more can you say about Obama?

    April 15, 2012 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  16. Pete

    The republicans always had a closed mind,for all we know they still think the worlds flat...They go by the propaganda playbook of Adolf Hitlers buddy Joseph Goebbels ,a mind and propaganda expert when they were together before WWII.Goebbels believed if you fed enough lies to someone,they'd start believing or questioning the validity of the suspected fabrications.That gives the rightwing extremists the opening to try to convert the questioning sheep that their way was the ONLY way to vote..That happened during the Bush-Kerry campaigns when his campaign manager hired T Boone Pickens and his invention Swift Boat against Kerry.Swift Boat bombarded the airwaves with anti Kerry ads,which turned the once decorated Vietnam veteran into a murderous war villian.It worked and Kerry lost a close campaign against the dirty campaign ethics of the republican party.McCain failed in his attempt to sway people his way using the Muslim theory on the Obama followers to no success,it backfired causing an avalanche of votes for the now Pres.Obama.So republicans have to be careful,it might backfire again because people are already aware of Romneys tactics,he's a full time political nitemare....

    April 15, 2012 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  17. Name: festus

    I just want to say that governing is not what Republican are good at. Take the last administration of George w. Bush how they squandered all the surplus left over by the Clinton administration. Their only governing they know and implement is tax cut,tax cut and tax cut for their friends the so call 1 to 2% among us. This is all they do. It is not helping our economy but still it is all they do the same plan that implemented by the last administration. People do not be decieved. Again tax cut never helps. Americans do the right thing. The question is, Is the economy stuplid?

    Festus C. Anyiam

    April 15, 2012 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  18. Dave Anders

    This guy says this or Obama fires him like others that do not lie for him.

    April 15, 2012 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  19. spenteco

    Andrea Saul will end up in the 3rd level of Mtten's cult's heaven. Have fun over in Mizzo. You can take spring break in Branston, Vandy Heaven.

    April 15, 2012 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  20. paul

    Romney tax plan wants to cut thousands from what the top % is currently paying. I think everyone knows upfront what Romeny stands for. He will work for the rich and go back to the "trickle" down economics that was costing us 700,000 jobs a months when Obama took office. Yet, somehow, Republicans want us to believe that it will work this time. I don't think Romney has a clue as to how most of the country lives.

    April 15, 2012 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  21. Randy, San Francisco

    Romney is just one of many GOP/Tea Party politicians who does not let facts get in the way of saying something inflammatory, false, or offensive; Palin, Bachmann, Cain, Huckabee, Gingrich, and Santorum to name a few.

    April 15, 2012 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  22. joe smith

    once again; if our elected officials, and appointees like geitner, took care of the govn't coffers, as they do their own personal ones, we would not be 13 trillion dollars in debt, and of course passing a ballanced budget amendment might help..

    April 15, 2012 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  23. Phil muse

    Surely, Romney doesn't mean to imply that the economic downturn hasn't been that serious because 92% of the job losses were only "women's jobs"? Thats what it sounds like he's saying.

    April 15, 2012 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  24. David Ouellette

    As a Canadian viewer, I can be more objective: Mitt Romney is a stereotypical Republican with millions and millions of dollars. He doesn't seem to have the slighest idea how the average, everyday person lives or what they go through, and he's far worse with minorities. He's all show and very little substance. If you Americans are SMART, you will shed this man faster than a fur coat in July!

    April 15, 2012 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  25. Bessy

    @ Jeetu
    I couldn't agree with you more except I would add that the people who cannot stop voting Republican are the ones who are buying into their " scare tactics " and pray to Rush, Hannity , O'Reilly and the likes every day. Too lazy to get off their butts and check out the real facts.

    April 15, 2012 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
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