Apparently, America is already great again.
That’s the verdict from Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders. She declared it in a tweet recently:
“Democrats wasted the year tearing the President down while the President built America back up: Booming economy – Millions of new jobs – ISIS caliphate in ruins – Record number of judicial appointments – Obamacare individual mandate repealed – Historic tax cuts America great again.”
Apparently, all it took to make America great again was to begin accepting facts President Donald Trump had said were fake.
The Trump administration has been touting GDP growth of above 3 percent for two consecutive quarters and deeming that, along with a low unemployment rate, a record-setting stock market and a couple million jobs created in 2017 as a “booming economy.” Under President Obama, the S&P 500 nearly tripled; the jobless rate began falling at a pace not seen since the Reagan era; and the middle class and poor received the largest annual increase in wages on record. In order to match the growth seen under Obama, the Dow Jones industrials would have to reach about 48,000 points under Trump; it’s at less than 25,000 today.
During the Obama era, quarterly GDP topped 3 percent seven times and came close a few more quarters. The economy grew 4 percent during the final three quarters of 2014; a brutal winter kept growth below 3 percent for the full year. If a couple of quarters of growth under Trump made America great again, why didn’t the back-to-back 4.6 percent and 5.2 percent quarters under Obama?
The Trump administration is bragging about the recently passed “historic tax cuts.” During the Obama era, there were two larger tax cuts, one of which came in a stimulus package that created millions of jobs and helped lift the country out of the worse downturn since the Great Depression.
The Trump administration says ISIS is in ruins. What it doesn’t say is that much of those battlefield gains happened under Obama and that the Trump strategy was essentially an extension of Obama’s fight.
The Trump administration brags about “millions of new jobs” – but neglects to say monthly job creation so far under Trump is slightly behind the pace Obama set, or that under Obama the economy created jobs for more consecutive months than any other president ever. The black poverty rate fell to its lowest level ever under Obama, and the overall poverty rate was falling at its fastest clip since 1968 during the end of the Obama era.
Though the Trump administration is exaggerating the president’s accomplishments, it is encouraging that it is finally embracing solid economic measures it once considered phony. A great country can’t be truly great if its leaders refuse to accept basic fact.