In a major speech delivered last week at the University of Illinois, Barack Obama said we really ought to credit him for the economy under President Trump.
“And by the time I left office, household income was near its all-time high, and the uninsured rate hit an all-time low, poverty rates were falling,” the former president said. “I mention this just so when you hear how great the economy is doing right now, let’s just remember when this recovery started.
“I’m glad it’s continued, but when you hear about this economic miracle that’s been going on, when the job numbers come out, monthly job numbers and suddenly Republicans are saying it’s a miracle, I have to kind of remind them, actually, those job numbers are the same as they were in 2015 and 2016 and — anyway. I digress.”
That’s not the tune he was spouting back in 2016, however — and Donald Trump just tweeted a video reminding everyone of that fact.
During a town hall in Indiana during the election, the former president bashed Trump’s talk on the economy and boasts that he’d bring jobs back.
“Well, how exactly are you going to do that? What exactly are you going to do? There’s no answer to it,” Obama said, according to The Hill.
“He just says, ‘Well, I’m going to negotiate a better deal.’ Well, what, how exactly are you going to negotiate that? What magic wand do you have? And usually the answer is, he doesn’t have an answer.”
What’s the answer? Well, this is the answer:
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 10, 2018
The video, released Monday, juxtaposes Obama’s anti-Trump remarks with the economic news that we’ve been getting as of late, with mood music just to rub it in a little bit.
It begins with the infamous quote that, “Some of the jobs of the past just are just not gonna come back.”
And then, cut to Trump on the podium reading off the jobs that have been created. Cue a long list of other clips of great economic news. And, scene.
Oh, and when it comes to whether or not Obama can take credit for the current economy and the jobs he said weren’t coming back, Trump took care of that too — albeit in a more prosaic way.
Earlier in the day, Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers Kevin Hassett gave a presentation at the White House news briefing which showed how many economic indicators had increased dramatically under the Trump administration in a way they hadn’t under Obama.
“I would assert that if you look at the collective body of evidence, the notion that what we’re seeing right now is just a continuation of recent trends is not super defensible,” Hassett said.
“And I think that — I know that we’re in a political time and passions are high. But, as geeky economists, one of the things we have to do is think ahead to what historians will think when they look back at this time. And I can promise you that economic historians will 100 percent accept the fact that there was an inflection at the election of Donald Trump, and that a whole bunch of data items started heading north.”
That’s not as interesting as the video, of course — but both should be stern reality checks for partisans of former President Obama.
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