Home Politics Republicans hope inflation, jitters will outpace Biden’s blockbuster jobs report

Republicans hope inflation, jitters will outpace Biden’s blockbuster jobs report

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Republicans hope inflation, jitters will outpace Biden's blockbuster jobs report

Republicans are choosing to ignore another blockbuster jobs report that shattered expectations and instead focus on the rising cost of living.

Stephen Moore, a visiting fellow at the Heritage Foundation and economic adviser to former President Donald Trump, argued that despite the positive jobs report, Americans were not feeling more optimistic about the economy because of inflation. That, he said, gave Republicans an opportunity to target Biden.

“All the surveys in the last two years have shown that people feel worse. And partly because most Americans are worse off,” Moore said. “So we’re going to continue to criticize Biden’s economy for not working for middle-class Americans.”

Inflation, which Republicans have been maintaining for much of the early years of Biden’s presidency, has fallen markedly from its Covid-era peak in 2022, although it has remained stubbornly above the 2 percent target. Federal Reserve.

Knowing that the general election may hinge on the success or failure of the economy (real or perceived), Republicans have also begun analyzing the jobs report to find flaws.

The Republican National Committee Quick Response Store released a statement That signaled that of the 303,000 jobs added in March, a net zero was in manufacturing. He also noted that “unemployment has skyrocketed among key demographic groups, including women, black Americans, and veterans.”

But even if subsets of unemployment have risen again (if they stay, as numbers can be revised up or down after the initial report), the labor market remains incredibly strong overall, with layoffs at unusually low levels and a increasing labor force participation. And the president did not hesitate to take credit.

“Unemployment has been below 4% for the longest period in more than 50 years. Salaries are going up. “Inflation has dropped significantly,” President Joe Biden said in a statement Friday morning.

It was pretty cool that White House deputy communications director Herbie Ziskend labeled Biden’s statement on jobs numbers “Bidenomy” – bringing back a nickname Republicans had been using to describe a lagging economy after the pandemic.

David Malpass, who served as Trump’s undersecretary of the Treasury for international affairs, admitted that the jobs numbers looked good, but returned to a common GOP talking point: the national debt.

“Improvements in employment are welcome, but government spending is driving many of those gains,” he said in a statement to POLITICO. “Everyone sees the result: the national debt is skyrocketing.”

Still, there are risks to Biden’s optimistic outlook. The Federal Reserve is keeping interest rates at tough levels for now as progress on inflation has begun to stabilize. If price spikes continue to cool, Chairman Jerome Powell hopes to reduce borrowing costs later this year, but he is in no rush to do so as long as economic activity remains strong and unemployment remains low.

Gasoline prices and global commodity prices have risen again, which could stoke inflation in ways the Federal Reserve is not designed to combat.

He RNC Research account on X is noted that gas prices have “gone 50% since Biden took office.”

Meanwhile, the rising cost of living has continually weighed on Americans’ assessment of the economy. Those sentiment numbers are improving and wages are now growing faster than prices, but Biden is still neck and neck with Trump in national polls and is down significantly in swing states. His overall approval rating is still underwater.

“It’s impossible to change public sentiment on this issue because the Biden administration has proven to be so out of touch and American families are still under intense economic pressure,” said Michael McAdams, a Republican strategist and alumnus of the National Republican Congressional Committee. .

And Republicans believe it will continue that way and help them move up and down the ballot.

“Voters overwhelmingly view Joe Biden’s economic policies as harmful to our country,” said National Republican Senate Committee spokesman Mike Berg. “That’s why you haven’t seen a single Democratic Senate candidate in a competitive campaign on Bidenomics.”

With the election exactly seven months away, Moore said he was skeptical that inflation would dissipate when voters cast their ballots.

“The problem right now for Biden,” he argued, “is not jobs.”

Ally Mutnick contributed to this report.

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