How 2020 Establishes a Benchmark for Biden’s Success

President Joe Biden frequently points to his administration’s program as having record-breaking job creation and economic progress. When taken out of context, the eye-popping data suggests the economy is booming again. 

However, in reality, he used the economic disaster in 2020 (because of a pandemic that caused businesses to close and people to stay inside for the whole year) to help him get what he wanted. 

As a result, 2020 gives Biden an artificially low point to compare, allowing him to paint a misleading picture of the improving economy he has been in charge of.

Furthermore, when contrasted to economic data from 2019, the year before the epidemic, the statistics Biden offers as evidence of his big success appear to be significantly less remarkable. 

Unemployment Statistics

When Biden delivered his State of the Union speech earlier this month, he claimed, “Our economy generated over 6.5 million new jobs last year, more employment created in one year than any other year in the history of America.” 

In the past, Biden made similar statements, citing job numbers as proof his policies were making businesses hire at an unprecedented rate.

Though the claim fails to take into consideration how many more people were out of work at the peak of the epidemic and how far the country still has to go before it can be considered fully recovered. 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment losses that happened in 2020 were “unprecedented in recent history.” Per the bureau, the economy shed 9.4 million jobs in the year before Biden was elected president.

President Biden has focused on the 6.5 million jobs that will be back in 2021, but many more people have been out of work than they were before the pandemic.

The national jobless rate was 3.6 percent in January 2020, under the administration of then-President Trump, two months before the shutdowns triggered by the pandemic began. 

“A Record-Setting Economic Success”

At the start of February 2022, the unemployment rate was 3.8%, which President Biden called a “record-setting economic success.”

Biden also said the gross domestic product of the United States has gone up a lot during his time as president.

Throughout his State of the Union speech, President Biden talked a lot about how the GDP grew by 5.7% last year, which he said was the “strongest growth in over 40 years.”

While the GDP increased in 2021, the expansion followed a significant drop in the previous year, leaving the economy with plenty of ground to make up coming into Biden’s first year in office.

GDP is expected to fall by 3.5 percent in 2020, the most since the 1940s, when World War II wreaked havoc on the global economy.

Furthermore, since the pandemic, President Biden has repeatedly emphasized wage growth as a metric of the good effects that his economic strategy has produced.

The president stated in a speech last November, “the typical American household has more money on hand than they had the previous year.”

On Biden’s watch, inflation has largely eaten away at the wage growth that most workers have experienced.

When the rising cost of consumer goods is factored in, statistics show the average worker lost 2.4 percent of their salary in 2017.