Five Things Obama Didn't Want You to Hear in His State of the Union

Seeking to put the best possible spin on his message, President Barack Obama took some liberties with the truth in his State of the Union address.

Although the president never actually lied, he repeatedly left out facts that contradict his claims of success.

President Obama hadn't yet left the House chamber when the reality check started. And it didn't take long to find some pretty big the holes in the State of the Union address.

The bending of reality ranged from domestic oil issues to General Motors Company (NYSE: GM) to tire imports.

Here are just five instances in the State of the Union address in which President Obama didn't tell the whole story:

  1. What the President Said About the Auto Industry:
    On the day I took office, our auto industry was on the verge of collapse. Some even said we should let it die. With a million jobs at stake, I refused to let that happen. In exchange for help, we demanded responsibility. We got workers and automakers to settle their differences. We got the industry to retool and restructure. Today, General Motors is back on top as the world's number one automaker. Chrysler has grown faster in the U.S. than any major car company. Ford is investing billions in U.S. plants and factories. And together, the entire industry added nearly 160,000 jobs.

    What the President Didn't Tell You:
    First of all, President Obama forgot to mention that the GM bailout process started under President George Bush. And Ford Motor Company 's (NYSE: F) success has nothing to do with the government; it never took any government help. Jobs were saved, but the auto industry lost 200,000 workers. Analysts say the industry won't get back to pre-recession job levels until 2015.

    President Obama also left out the cost of the bailout to the American taxpayer. Because the United States became a major shareholder in GM, the nation still holds 500 million shares of the stock. Given the nation's investment, the U.S. would need to sell those shares at $53 each to break even. GM currently trades at about $25 a share, putting U.S. taxpayers $14 billion in the hole.

  2. What the President Said About Oil:

    Right now, American oil production is the highest that it's been in eight years. That's right - eight years. Not only that - last year, we relied less on foreign oil than in any of the past sixteen years.

    What the President Didn't Tell You:
    While U.S. oil production is at its highest levels in eight years, production is only incrementally higher than it was in 2003. And higher production is not, as the president implied, responsible for the nation's reduced reliance on foreign oil. That resulted from years of declining consumption - a trend that started in 2006, two years before President Obama was elected. He also forgot to mention that the price of gasoline has skyrocketed 83% during his term, from $1.79 in January 2009 to $3.28 in December.

  3. What the President Said About Job Growth:
    In the last 22 months, businesses have created more than three million jobs. Last year, they created the most jobs since 2005. American manufacturers are hiring again, creating jobs for the first time since the late 1990s.

    What the President Didn't Tell You:
    The jobs picture is not quite as rosy as the president described. Total employment is still 1.7 million lower than it was in January 2009, and 6 million lower than the peak in January 2008. And of course, President Obama did not want to remind Americans that the unemployment rate, though it has dropped to 8.5%, was over 9% for most of his presidency.

  4. What the President Said About Government Regulations:
    In fact, I've approved fewer regulations in the first three years of my presidency than my Republican predecessor did in his.
  5. What the President Didn't Tell You:
    True enough, President Obama approved 613 regulations in his first 33 months in office - 30 fewer than President Bush. But what he didn't say was that the regulations he approved were generally more costly. President Obama approved 129 regulations that will cost more than $100 million, compared to just 90 for President Bush.

  6. What the President Said About Chinese Tire Imports:
    Over a thousand Americans are working today because we stopped a surge in Chinese tires.
  7. What the President Didn't Tell You:

    The cause and effect for the increase in U.S. tire manufacturing jobs is unclear. Although a tariff enacted in 2009 did slow imports of Chinese tires, other nations -- such as Mexico, Thailand and Indonesia -- quickly filled the gap. "So far as saving American jobs, it just isn't working," Roy Littlefield of the 6,000 member Tire Industry Association, told The Wall Street Journal. "And it really hurt a lot of people in the industry-smaller businesses that geared up to bring these tires in from China."

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