MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton is airing his first political campaign ad of the year.

He takes credit for “coaching” Minnesota to an economic turnaround.

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But did that really happen?

The ad shows Dayton behind the bench, coaching a hockey team (Minnesota) that was down, but not out.

It’s mostly true, but it leaves out important details.

“A few years ago, things in Minnesota weren’t going very well,” says the narrator, a thick-Minnesota accented hockey player. “So we got a new coach.”

In fact, Gov. Dayton won re-election after Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty decided not to run again.

But the ad accurately describes an economic turnaround.

“We’ve added over 150,000 new jobs and have one of the fastest-growing economies in the nation,” according to the ad.

It’s true.

Minnesota recovered all of the 150,000 jobs it lost in the 2008 recession, and its unemployment rate is a low 4.3 percent.

In August of 2009, Minnesota’s work force totaled 2.7 million workers, after a steep two-year drop during the recession.

In August of 2014, Minnesota’s employment rate was more than 2.85 million workers.

But “under-employment still grips the economy,” according to the Minnesota Department of Economic Development.

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Tens of thousands of new jobs are not as good as the jobs they replaced: lower pay and fewer hours.

The ad continues: “Cut taxes while increasing our rainy-day fund and investing in education.”

This is also true.

The DFL governor and legislature did cut taxes for middle-income earners.

But they also passed a $2 billion tax hike on Minnesota’s highest earners: workers who earn above $250,000 a year.

This is not the first time Dayton used a hockey metaphor in a political ad. He was once in pads behind the net for a U.S. Senate ad.

Gov. Dayton was an all-state goaltender in high school, and later played varsity goalie for Yale. He was a youth hockey coach in later years.

Here are some of the sources we used for this Reality Check:

Underemployment in Minnesota

Minnesota Job Gains 1

Minnesota Job Gains 2

“Mark Dayton For Governor” Website

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