During an appearance in New Hampshire on Thursday, Texas Gov. Rick Perry told a crowd that the Recovery Act (Obama stimulus) "didn't create any jobs, as far as I can tell" (video below).
However, the Houston Chronicle estimated that stimulus funds created or saved 47,704 jobs in Texas, as of July:
The stimulus-related jobs are spread across the state, from Abilene to Zavalla, and have paid for everything from airport runways to video recorders. The greatest chunk of dollars, more than $2 billion, has been directed to Austin, where myriad state agencies send much of the money elsewhere.
Texas even has a web site where users can track stimulus funds by city and county, revealing exactly what it was used for. Officials used stimulus funds to keep schools open, put more people to work on infrastructure projects and ensure that children received health care.
According to Time magazine, from 2003 to 2006, Gov. Perry oversaw a lobbying campaign that sought federal relief funds, generating over a billion dollars for the Texas. Some of that money was used to fund programs Perry now claims to be against.
The federal stimulus program, that many experts agree kept the U.S. economy running in the midst of an unprecedented financial crisis, was especially valuable to Texas, which accepted more aid dollars than any other state apart from California, using them to close nearly 97 percent of its budget deficit last year.