Rob Nichols thinks he’s clever.

After today’s devastating investigative report on JobsOhio, Kasich Spokesman Nichols tried to use out-of-context job numbers to deflect from the revelation that two thirds of JobsOhio’s board members have direct financial ties to companies receiving grants and tax incentives from JobsOhio and the Kasich administration.

“It is working.  JobsOhio, in part, is responsible for 162,000 private sector jobs” claims Nichols, right on message.

But like most of Kasich’s messaging, you have to dig a little deeper to find the truth.

According to the Bureau of Labor statistics, since January 2011, Ohio’s employment is up 139,600 – not 162,000.

So if you believed Nichols numbers, you’d think JobsOhio helped create more jobs than the state even gained in the past two and half years!

And that’s where Nichols thinks he being clever – using the phrase  “private sector jobs”.   When you look at ALL the numbers you find that there were actually an additional 22,200 jobs lost over the same time period.

And did these job losses come from the downsizing of state government, a key campaign promise of candidate Kasich?

Hell no.

Instead, Ohio has lost  5,100 federal workers and a whopping 18,400 cops, firefighters, teachers and other local government jobs thanks to Kasich’s disastrous cuts to cities, towns and counties.

At the same time, state government has actually GROWN by 1,300 workers as state spending skyrockets under Kasich with GRF appropriations increasing by over 20%.

And how are we stacking up compared to other states?

Last month, Ohio lost 12,500 jobs – more than every other state but one.  Over the past 12 months Ohio’s job growth is 47% in the nation.

As a matter of fact, job growth was so bad last year that JobsOhio actually changed how they count job commitments in their 2012 annual report so they could exaggerate the number.

Rob Nichols thinks he’s clever.  He thinks that if he repeats some out-of-context, cherry-picked ‘fact’ enough times people will be distracted away from the horrendous job growth Ohio has seen under Kasich.   He thinks people won’t realize how poorly JobsOhio, the cornerstone of Kasich’s economic plan, is performing.  He thinks we’ll all be distracted enough to stop asking about the ever-growing list of transparency and conflict of interest problems at JobsOhio.

Rob Nichols thinks he’s clever.  But he’s not.