Richard Santorum – Iowa Freedom Summit, Hoyt Sherman Place: Analysis

On Jan. 24 2015, Steve King held the inaugural Iowa Freedom Summit at Hoyt Sherman Place in Des Moines, Iowa. This event brought in many republican politicians who spoke to hundreds directly at the event and thousands through a live broadcast. Senators, businessmen, governors and many more  shared political addresses regarding the upcoming election in 2016.

Former United States Senator, Richard “Rick” Santorum was one of the many contributors to this event. Santorum provided a viewpoint on how the country is divided and the need for the American Dream to come back to what it once was. He provided information that made the audience wonder more about what was going on with the country. The facts brought up shocked the audience and viewers, so being able to dig deeper with that is necessary.

Many comments Santorum made were true. One of the first items discussed was his sweater vest. He stated that the Iowa Freedom Summit at Hoyt

Courtesy of Creative Commons.

Courtesy of Creative Commons.

Sherman Place was the location that launched his sweater vest. While he was not wearing one on January 24, 2015 he did wear the infamous sweater vest at previous events.

Here are some of the main facts that were provided by Santorum which have been checked for validity.

One of the main facts during Santorum’s speech was immigration and jobs for American citizens versus non-citizens.

“Since 2000 there have been 6 million net new jobs created in America. … How many of those net new jobs are held by people who were not born in this country? All of them. There are fewer Americans working today who were born in this country than there were in the year 2000 in spite of 17 million more in the workforce.”

However, according to factcheck.org, the three words that take this entire surprising statement is stated to be false are “all of them.”

In the same article it is stated that “Santorum ignores the 2.6 million jobs gains by native-born Americans over the age of 65 in the same time period.”

The information that Santorum used was based off of a Center for Immigration June 2014 report.

When the report was first presented, it seemed as if this statement was true, but once one looks further in, it quickly shows a different side of the issue.

In this report it is illustrated that since 2000 work from native-born citizens has declined and due to immigration, employment is decreased for natives.

Overall, this fact was not stated correctly. There were many facts and statistics that showed the effects of immigration on native-born workers, but the point Santorum was trying to get us what not correctly stated and shown as he missed the mark with saying that non-citizens had all 6 million net new jobs.

Another major statistic that he presented at the Summit dealt with the percentages of individuals who were born outside of the United States.

“We’re approaching percentage-wise the highest level of immigrants than we’ve ever had in America. Almost 14 percent now. It was 14.2 at the end of the great wave in 1920. There are more people not born in this country than have ever been in the history of the country.”

Just from that quote it can be distinguished that even points of a percentage off, is still a large adjustment since we are talking in terms of millions of individuals, not just a household. By stating that we are “almost at 14 percent” and then go to 14.2 percent can show that the layout of this portion

Jobs for immigrants vs. native born in the U.S.

Jobs for immigrants vs. native born in the U.S.

of the speech should have been in a different order and format. This fact can skew skeptics to go elsewhere.

According to Census data from 2013, this data shows where we were as a country when we were at 13.1 percent of immigrants in the population.

The other portion of this statement states that the highest level of immigrants was in 1920 at the end of the great wave. The great wave did end in 1920. Nonetheless, according to factcheck.org the highest point was in 1890 when the population of foreign-born individuals we were at 14.8 percent.

While these two reports at first glance seem to be deemed as true, the documents and reports that were used for the speech can show that either the reports weren’t looked at close enough or there is a trace of hyperbole at play.

Another item brought up was percentages on education.

“Look at those who of the 70-percent of Americans don’t have a college degree and many of them don’t have a high school degree.”

At first glance this seems to be a shocking percentage of individuals who do not have a college degree in America. Nevertheless, concurring to looking deeper it can quickly be shown that the statistic is not clearly that high in a percent.

According to a report done in 2012 by the Lumina Foundation, a private

College enrollment increasing.

College enrollment increasing.

institution, 40 percent of all working-aged citizens now have a college education and degree. If this information is accurate today as it was just over two years ago, the percentage would approximately be 60 percent rather than 70 percent that do not hold a college degree.

This fact check shows that it would still have been helpful to him since over half of the American people do not have college degrees. While it is not as high as before, it would still show that our society does need to be better educated.

“Karen and I home schooled our children. … Was it harder?  Sure, it’s harder. … Oh but what a blessing to be intimately involved in your children’s education.”

This comment may be blinding and bringing previous issues up for himself. In 2012 Santorum enrolled and has his children attend a Pennsylvania cyber charter school. At this time he insisted that taxpayers also pay for his children to attend.

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