A New York Times article on the senate race in North Carolina referred to cuts in the state's unemployment benefits and tax breaks for businesses. It then told readers:
"The resulting business climate, Mr. Jordan said, has played a role in an unemployment rate drop from 10.4 percent, when Mr. Tillis was elected speaker in January 2011, to 6.2 percent today."
The reason that unemployment dropped more rapidly in North Carolina than in most other states was that people gave up looking for work and left the labor force. North Carolina's labor force increased by just 0.9 percent over this period, from 4,647,000 in January of 2011 to 4,688,000 in June of 2014. By comparison, the South Atlantic region as a whole had an increase in its labor force of 4.4 percent, from 29,062,000 in January of 2011 to 30,319,000 in June of 2014. If North Carolina's labor force had increased in step with rest of the region, its unemployment rate would still be far higher than the rate for the rest of the country.