The Truth About Rick Perry's 'Texas Miracle'

Texas' unparalleled job growth stems from both policy and circumstance.

ByABC News
August 17, 2011, 6:58 PM

Aug. 18, 2011 — -- Rick Perry is a miracle-maker, but only if you ask Rick Perry. The Texas governor has traversed three early-primary states in the week since he announced his candidacy for president, touting Texas's job growth as the "Texas miracle."

And by some measures, Perry is right. Texas's economic growth is outpacing every other state in the country. In fact, the Lone Star State is growing at twice the national average.

A widely-cited report from the Dallas Federal Reserve shows that 37 percent of all the jobs created since 2009 were created in the Lone Star state. In fact, Texas has 30,800 more jobs today than it did in December 2007, before the recession began.

But the story is far more complex than that.

"Some people dismiss Texas' job creation," Perry said at a campaign stop in Bedford, N.H., Wednesday. "There have been some over on the left that said that the fact is that those 40 percent of the jobs created in America since ... June of 2009 was just luck. Well, Mr. President, America's crisis is not bad luck. It's bad policies from Washington, D.C."

While a large part of Texas' job growth can be attributed, as Perry does, to low taxes, minimal regulations and business incentive packages, a significant proportion of the growth also comes just from Texas being Texas.

The Lone Star State is rich in natural resources such as oil and natural gas, so when the rest of the country was struggling with high energy prices at the onset of the recession, Texas companies were turning big profits and, therefore, pumping tax revenue into the state coffers.

These high energy profits helped Texas stave off the brunt of the recession for about six months.

And while the state's economy is growing at twice the national rate, so is its population. Texas grew 20.6 percent from 2000 to 2011, while the country's population only increased by 9.7 percent. With more people comes more purchasing power, which leads to job growth.