White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was ripped by critics after she claimed Thursday that the US is “stronger economicall
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was ripped by critics after she claimed Thursday that the US is “stronger economically than we have been in history.”
Jean-Pierre made the claim during an exchange with Fox News White House correspondent Peter Doocy, who pressed Jean-Pierre about a recent Monmouth University poll that showed 88% of Americans think the country is on the wrong track.
“We’re doing everything that we can and we have a plan,” the press secretary responded. “Here’s the thing. We have a plan. Republicans do not have a plan. What they want to do is take away rights from the American people.”
“Do you think it’s possible that your plan just is not popular with the American people right now?” Doocy followed up.
“I don’t think it’s that our plan is not popular with the American people,” Jean-Pierre said. “We know that the American people are feeling the high costs. We understand what they are feeling because when you look at inflation, when you look at where we are economically – and we are stronger economically than we have been in history – when you look at the unemployment numbers at 3.6%, when you look at the jobs numbers, more than 8.7 million new jobs created, that is important.”
Republicans and conservatives jumped on the White House claim, pointing out that annual inflation remains at levels not seen in four decades, the Dow Jones Industrial average has plummeted more than 5,500 points from its high-water mark this year, and GDP data indicates the US heading for a recession.
“Every time this message gets repeated from the @PressSec, your #401k shrinks yet again,” tweeted Jennifer Stefano, executive vice president of the Commonwealth Foundation. “When is the Biden admin going to come out from under the covers and actually face the truth of our #economy and #inflation?”
“Americans are not buying this, @PressSec,” Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) tweeted. “How does 40-year high inflation mean the U.S. is ‘stronger economically than we have been in history?’”
Author James Hirsen simply labeled Jean-Pierre’s remarks as the “The Big Stupid Lie.”
“Biden Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre insists ‘we are stronger economically than we have been in history.’ Inflation is close to 40-year highs, the economy shrank last quarter, and 64% say their financial situation is ‘getting worse,’” said Tommy Pigott, Rapid Response Director for the Republican National Committee.
“#PolitifactThis,” Newsbusters Executive Editor Tim Graham posted.
“Hey, I’m a Guy who grew up in SouthPhilly, went to College on HawkHill and coaches softball …so, I must not fully understand economics. Because, to me and my family, we are losing money each paycheck and our retirement savings are crashing too. But, heck, I’m not as smart as her,” tweeted Republican Pennsylvania Congressional candidate Guy Ciarrocchi.
“In other news, the Earth is flat,” the official Twitter account for the conservative grassworks organization Freedom Works posted.
“I mean, come on. Inflation is at a 40-year high, gas prices are averaging $5 a gallon nationwide, we still haven’t gotten back all the jobs we lost from the pandemic, and wages [are] several percentage points behind inflation,” said John Cooper, media and public relations director at the Heritage Foundation. “Biden’s economy is historic, but not the way they’d like.”
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) also chimed in saying, “Every American—except those working in the Biden White House apparently—knows that this is not true.”
While inflation hit a record high of 8.6% in May, and the average cost of a gallon of gas stood at $4.721 on Friday, the Biden administration did receive one piece of good economic news.
In June, the US added 372,000 jobs – a number much higher than the approximately 270,000 expected. Amid the gains, the unemployment rate remained steady at 3.6%.
In response, President Biden hailed what he called “the fastest and strongest jobs recovery in American history.”
“The historic strength of our job market is one reason our economy is uniquely well positioned to tackle a range of global economic challenges – from global inflation to the economic fallout from Putin’s war,” he said in a statement. “No country is better positioned than America to bring down inflation, without giving up all of the economic gains we have made over the last 18 months.
“Of course, having added a record number of new jobs, and achieved historically low levels of unemployment, additional job growth from this strong position will be slower,” he added. “That is not a bad thing, because our economy should move to stable growth for the years ahead.”