The Daily Briefing's Dan Diamond noted something about the new jobs numbers.

That's true. In the past three months, the health-care industry has added 135,000 jobs. Between January 2001 and December 2004, the net job creation was ... negative-78,000. So not a super high bar, to be fair. (Using that standard, you could also say that the horse-drawn carriage industry created more jobs in the past three months than the entire U.S. economy between 2001 and 2004.)

But the broader point, that the health-care industry is going gangbusters, is also true. And it's been true since President Obama took office.

Over the 78 months of Obama's presidency, the industry has lost jobs in only three — all between May and December 2013. Otherwise: Up, up, up.

That the declines were shortly before the Affordable Care Act's mandate kicked in seems as though it might be suggestive. Comparing jobs gained or lost to key Obamacare signposts, though, there's no apparent long-term effect. We included two other industries that we noted in December: Oil and gas, and government. You'll see why in a second.


It took until just about Election Day 2012 for the number of jobs added since January 2009 in the entire economy to catch up to jobs added in health care. Since, of course, the overall count has risen much faster.

Unless you look at percentage change. When we analyzed industries last December, with the November jobs data, you could see that the percentage growth in health care tracked pretty steadily with overall employment. Oil and gas, with far fewer employees, had grown much faster since the depths of the recession, thanks to the oil boom in North Dakota, Texas and Oklahoma.

Since November, though, that growth has slowed, thanks to the massive disruption in the international oil market.


Meanwhile, the number of government jobs continues to be far lower than when Obama took office.

So what's Obama's legacy? Last year, we speculated that it might focus around oil and health-care jobs; if the percentage of oil and gas jobs slips, health care will become the bigger growth industry by both metrics.

Obama's legacy was secured in part by the Supreme Court decision to uphold Obamacare last week. With these numbers, we might as well go ahead and call him the health-care industry president.