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VIDEO REPORT: Governor Scott Walker Releases More Positive Jobs Numbers

UPDATED Wednesday, May 16, 2012 --- 4:50 p.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The Wisconsin Democratic Party has filed a complaint against Republican Gov. Scott Walker over his latest television ad.

The ad released Wednesday includes footage of Walker touting new jobs data that the state made public earlier in the day.

The Democratic Party alleges in the complaint sent to the Dane County district attorney and the state elections board that Walker illegally used state time and resources to craft a political message in violation of the law.

Walker's campaign spokeswoman Ciara Matthews dismisses the charge, saying Walker shot various versions of the ad in advance of when the final number was known. She says the final version of the ad was completed Thursday morning before being electronically sent to stations.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.

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UPDATED Wednesday, May 16, 2012 --- 3:55 p.m.

Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development Secretary Reggie Newson says today's jobs announcement was "absolutely note" motivated by the recall election.

But this afternoon Wisconsin Democrats held a media briefing.

They claim Governor Scott Walker clearly broke the law -- using state resources for campaign purposes.

A new television ad was just released today where Governor Walker mentions the new numbers.

Democrats claim he must have known about the numbers earlier than yesterday for an ad to come out today.

Mike Tate said: "This is the law, and the law matters, and he very clearly has broken the law here to benefit himself politically, and we are filing a complaint with GAB as well as asking Dane County DA to investigate this serious matter."

Stay with NBC15.com for continuing coverage.

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UPDATED Wednesday, May 16, 2012 --- 1:00 p.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development Secretary Reggie Newson says the decision to release new jobs numbers early was his alone and not made in consultation with Republican Gov. Scott Walker.

Newson released the figures Wednesday, less than three weeks before Walker faces Democrat Tom Barrett in a June 5 recall vote. Walker appointed Newson to his post.

Newson says the pending recall had no effect on his unusual decision to release the data early.

The new numbers show Wisconsin added 23,300 jobs last year instead of lost 33,900.

The numbers are preliminary and subject to revision by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The final count comes out June 28, three weeks after the recall.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.

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UPDATED Wednesday, May 16, 2012 --- 11:46 a.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Embattled Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has released updated employment figures that show the state actually added a small number of jobs during his first year in office.

Walker took the unusual step Wednesday of releasing fourth-quarter data due out in the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics' June 28 national employment report that show Wisconsin added 23,300 public- and private-sector jobs last year. Less reliable data based on monthly employment surveys suggested Wisconsin lost 33,900 jobs in 2011, which would rank worst in the nation.

Walker campaigned on a pledge to add 250,000 private-sector jobs during his first four-year term. He faces a June 5 recall election largely because of anger over his successful efforts to strip most public workers of collective bargaining rights.

Democrats argue Walker has hurt the economy.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.

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UPDATED Wednesday, May 16, 2012 --- 10:10 a.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Gov. Scott Walker is touting new positive jobs numbers he says is a more accurate reflection of how the state's economy is turning around.

But his Democratic challenger Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett says Walker is cooking the books by releasing the figures before they have been reviewed by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The figures based on a census of businesses released Wednesday show Wisconsin gained 23,300 public and private jobs in 2011. Previous totals based on a smaller survey of businesses showed the state lost 33,900 jobs over the year.

Barrett says he has no idea whether the new figures are accurate.

Walker promised to create 250,000 private sector jobs over four years. That amounts to 62,500 a year.

The recall election is June 5.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.

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UPDATED Wednesday, May 16, 2012 --- 10:00 a.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Economists say new jobs numbers being reported by Gov. Scott Walker's administration are a more accurate reflection of how the state is doing.

But even if the figures released Wednesday are accurate, the 23,300 jobs created in 2011 are far from the 62,500 needed per year for Walker to meet his 2010 campaign pledge to create 250,000 by 2015.

And the new figures cover both private and public jobs while Walker's promise was only for public sector jobs.

Still, the new numbers based on a census of Wisconsin employers instead of a much smaller survey show a net gain of 23,300 jobs instead of a loss of 33,900 jobs.

University of Wisconsin-Madison economist Andrew Reschovsky says the data is more accurate. Wells Fargo Fund Management economist Brian Jacobsen agrees.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.

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UPDATED 9:35 a.m.
Posted Wednesday, May 16, 2012 --- 7:35 a.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Gov. Scott Walker has released jobs numbers for the last three months of 2011 that are more positive than previously reported.

The new figures he issued on Wednesday come less than three weeks before voters will decide whether he should stay in office or be replaced with Democratic Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.

Walker's administration say the numbers show a gain of more than 23,000 jobs between December 2010, the month before Walker took office, and December 2011.

The more commonly used standard for measuring his progress on job creation based on a survey by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows a loss of 33,900 jobs over that period.

Barrett has accused Walker of cooking the books in advance of the recall.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.

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Reaction from the Tom Barrett campaign:

MILWAUKEE - Just one day before the nonpartisan federal Bureau of Labor Statistics releases its April jobs numbers traditionally and commonly used by experts, officials, the media, every other state in the nation, and up to today Gov. Scott Walker, to measure the nation’s jobs status for the month, today Walker is trotting out an entirely new set of unverified numbers to distract attention from the fact that under his watch, Wisconsin lost more jobs than any other state in the country in 2011, and was the only state in the nation to suffer significant job loss over the past 12 months.

Barrett for Wisconsin issued the following statement from Communications Director Phil Walzak on Walker’s transparent attempt to distract from his worst-in-the-nation jobs record by ignoring the standard, trusted job statistics and instead highlighting unverified figures he never once spotlighted, and aren’t used by virtually any other expert or official across America.

“When it has suited him, Scott Walker has happily referenced the standard jobs statistics that basically everyone in the country uses. But since these regular, trusted numbers clearly show that Wisconsin leads the nation in jobs loss on his watch, Walker is desperate to distract from his worst-in-the-country jobs record. In a move that is virtually unheard of, Scott Walker is suddenly trotting out an altogether new set of unverified numbers - three weeks before an election - to mask his economic failure. Walker ran on a campaign promise to create 250,000 jobs and 10,000 businesses over four years. He is failing on both counts and is desperate to change the conversation on jobs with an election looming."

"Today’s cynical announcement isn’t about how best to calculate job growth in Wisconsin – this is about Scott Walker pulling political stunts to save his own job."

Reaction from the Scott Walker campaign:

The actual data clearly shows that Wisconsin gained thousands of jobs in 2011. Contrast this to the more than 100,000 jobs lost in the three years before I took office when unemployment peaked above 9%. Now, the unemployment rate is the lowest it has been since 2008.

While there has been mixed information regarding previously reported estimates, the actual data released today shows Wisconsin experienced job growth in 2011. Today’s data aligns with other signs that our economy is improving such as falling unemployment, increased tax revenues, and household employment surveys which have consistently shown more Wisconsinites are working.

It’s clear that from actually counting jobs for more than 96% of Wisconsin businesses we are headed in the right direction.

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From WITI-TV:

MILWAUKEE — Governor Scott Walker says the state’s Department of Workforce will release updated job-creation numbers from 2011 on Wednesday. Gov. Walker claims the actual job numbers for 2011 are brighter than the original estimates.

In a tweet, Gov. Walker says Wisconsin actually added more than 23,000 jobs in 2011 — that is a huge contrast compared to the numbers originally estimated last month.

Last month the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that Wisconsin lost more jobs over the last year than any other state. The original report showed that Wisconsin lost more than 23,000 jobs since Gov. Walker took office, but Walker says the new report will actually show that the state did better than initially reported.

Walker says the new data comes from a survey of more than 150,000 employers. 96 percent of the employers recently updated their numbers. The report given last month, he says, was from a poll of only 3.5 percent of those employers.

Governor Walker’s challenger in the recall race, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, refutes that idea. Barrett says Walker’s administration will spin the numbers and questions the motives behind the release.

“I don’t doubt for a second that he and his administration are going to try to cook the books and put themselves in a favorable light because they can not defend the fact that under his administration the state has lost more jobs than any other state in the entire nation,” Barrett said.

Gov. Walker, however, claims the original numbers are merely estimates, not the final numbers. ” Those are not the final numbers, those are estimates. ” This is not a new thing, all the states have to do this. The numbers that will come out is part of the normal process — the difference between estimates and actual (numbers),” Gov. Walker said.

In addition to job numbers being released Wednesday there are also two job fairs being held. One job fair will be held at the Waukesha County Technical College in Pewaukee from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The other job fair will be held at the State Fair Park in the Exposition Center from 4 p.m. to 8p.m.

Governor Walker will be addressing the new jobs numbers at a Business Association Breakfast at 7:45 a.m. Wednesday, May 16th at the Sheraton Hotel.

Barrett is expected to respond to the numbers at a news conference from his campaign office in Downtown Milwaukee later this morning.


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