Biden’s bragging rights show just how financially illiterate he is

Last week, the White House attempted to define its economic vision in a 58-page report titled “The Biden-Harris Economic Blueprint.” First we notice the sloppiness of the report. Five footnotes that allegedly provided the White House data include in bold: “Error! Bookmark not defined. There is also an awkward repetition, such as cut and paste” the strongest and fairest recovery in the labor market in modern history “paragraph after paragraph (eventually getting excited enough to remove the word” modern “, also allowing the president to declare superiority over all the ancient economic upswing).

The most revealing aspect of the White House’s economic vision is what it is Not included: inflation or deficit reduction.

Sure, the introduction states that “President Biden’s top economic priority is to reduce inflation and lower costs for households,” but none of the report’s “five key pillars” focus primarily on fighting inflation, which remains. incredibly high – 8.3% in August.

Indeed, the report repeatedly boasts of policies that worsen inflation. This includes the imposition of project-based employment contracts and prevailing Davis-Bacon wage rules (union giveaways that increase costs for federal projects) and the expansion of federal Buy American rules that prevent federal agencies from buying cheap imports. cost. The White House even flaunts its mandate by applying costly Davis-Bacon regulations to semiconductor manufacturers in the CHIPS Act, contradicting the bill’s purpose to reduce manufacturing costs and stimulate national semiconductor production.

Inflation is still skyrocketing, even though President Biden says otherwise.
Photo by Scott Olson / Getty Images

The White House report also laments the rising cost of tuition fees, but also brags about the steep increases in Pell scholarships and aid to college students which (according to the Federal Reserve) lead colleges to further raise tuition fees. to capture 60% of all student aid.

If reducing inflation is indeed the president’s top economic priority, we don’t see it in his policies.

Nor does the White House report express any concern about trillion-dollar budget deficits. Indeed, the only mention of deficits appears in a disposable line touting the 2022 deficit decline, driven entirely by rising tax revenues and pandemic spending on schedule, rather than any presidential action. .

President Biden’s laws such as the American Rescue Plan, Infrastructure Bill, Veterans Bill, CHIPS Act, Student Loan Appropriations and Bailouts have cumulatively added more than $ 4 trillion to a $ 10 deficit. years in just 20 months. And that’s in addition to the soaring core deficits that should push debt interest costs to a record 3.3% of the economy within a decade. Most of the 58-page plan boasts all the wonderful new benefits bought on the national credit card and offers no plans to stem the tide of red ink.

The White House report, moreover, repeatedly and breathlessly takes credit for an economic recovery that has resulted overwhelmingly from the withdrawal of the pandemic rather than any presidential policy. The “key result” of creating 9.7 million jobs comes mainly from the reopening of the economy after the pandemic. The “over $ 1.20 decline in gas prices this summer” obviously does not mention the $ 2.61 price increase that had previously occurred under Biden.

In what is certainly new to Republicans, as well as American governors, mayors and public health officials, the report states that “the Biden-Harris administration has also taken decisive action to open American schools in safety”.

There appear to be few positive developments in America for which the president will not ask for full credit.

Vice President Kamala Harris has joined President Biden's nonsense.
Vice President Kamala Harris played with President Biden’s nonsense.
Amanda Andrade-Rhoades – Swimming pool vi

The report also offers a lazy economic analysis that has long been disproved. This includes publishing a graph stating a substantial split between workers’ pay and productivity that left and right economists (including Lawrence Summers) have long denied.

The report laments declining tax revenues, although tax revenues are expected to reach 19.6% of the economy in 2022 (the second-highest level since World War II), driven by tax revenue on people’s income rising to a record 10.6% of the economy. Several graphs attempt to show insufficient corporate tax revenue by including only corporate tax revenue and ignoring taxes paid by small businesses through the Individual Income Tax Code. The White House repeats dubious claims that families earning less than $ 400,000 have been spared from all new taxes and that the $ 80 billion in new IRS funding will no longer lead to middle-class audits.

With Americans suffering from painful inflation, falling real wages and falling stock markets, the White House clearly feels the pressure to justify its economic performance. They will have to do better than the last lap.

Brian Riedl is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute. Follow him on Twitter @Brian_Riedl.

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