Colorado’s economy has officially cratered since Gov. Polis instituted restaurant shutdowns in November.
Colorado had one of the best labor markets in the entire country with a staggeringly low sub-3 percent unemployment rate prior to the pandemic.
Now it’s a different story.
The unemployment rate rocketed from 6.4% in November to 8.4% in December, the fourth highest in the entire country.
The vast majority of job losses were within Colorado’s hospitality and leisure sector, which experienced the brunt of Polis’s draconian shutdown mandates.
The Denver Post on Monday documented concerns from financial analysts, small business owners, and local economists about the now dire state of Colorado’s once booming labor market.
“It appears the on-again, off-again efforts to find a balance between the economy and the number of COVID-19 cases killed the economy from an employment perspective,” said Gary Horvath, an economist based in Broomfield.
Polis and other Democrats forcefully argued that shutdowns would actually put Colorado in a better situation economically once the pandemic began to subside.
That prediction has turned out to be woefully inaccurate.
Some places like South Dakota actually have a lower unemployment rate than they did before the pandemic.
Moreover, Utah and Idaho have regained all of the jobs they lost during the pandemic, while Colorado still faces a stunning 150,000 job deficit.
Colorado’s labor market is so bad we even trail New Mexico, a state with far more systemic economic problems than Colorado.
The Colorado Restaurant Association laid the blame on the state.
For reasons she still doesn’t understand, Sonia Riggs, president and CEO of the Colorado Restaurant Association, said Colorado officials chose to take a harder line against bars and restaurants than other states did.
They did so without presenting studies to show restaurants were a significant contributor to the spread of COVID-19 cases, she said. For example, capacity was capped at 50, even if a dining space was large enough to handle many more using the 6-foot distancing recommended by the Centers for Disease Control.
Polis’s shutdowns have also disproportionately affected females and other minorities who are employed at higher rates in leisure and hospitality.
Sectors dominated by white males like business and professional services, on the other hand, are flourishing.
That news ought to be a rude awakening for woke liberals like Polis who feign concern about the welfare of minority communities.
Voters appear to be taking notice of Colorado’s tanking economy.
Polis’s approval rate has sunk 29% since the outset of the pandemic, barely trailing California Governor Newsom who has seen his approval decline 35%.
Newsom is facing a potential recall over his hypocritical and disastrous handling of California’s economy during the pandemic.
Whether or not Newsom is eventually recalled, it’s abundantly clear both liberal governors are in deep trouble as business closures appear likely to escalate in both states.