President Joe Biden is trying to push the idea that inflation has “been basically even” over the summer, as though that is some kind of a win.
CBS News’ Scott Pelley noted during an interview that the stock market “nose-dived” after the inflation report and that Americans are “shocked by their grocery bills.”
“What can you do better and faster?” he asked.
Biden responded, “Well, first of all, let’s put this in perspective. Inflation month to month was just up an inch. Hardly at all.”
“You’re not arguing 8.3% is good news?” Pelley interjected.
The president said, “No, not at all. But it was 8.2 before. You’re making it sound like ‘My God, it went to [8.3%]!””
Pelley noted that inflation is still hovering near a 40-year high, to which Biden said, “I got that… We’re in a position where for the last several months it hasn’t spiked. It’s been basically even.”
Watch the video below:
Biden: "Inflation month to month was just up an inch. Hardly at all."
Interviewer: "You're not arguing 8.3% is good news?"
Biden: "No not at all. It was 8.2 before"
Interviewer: "It's the highest rate in 40 years."
Biden: "The last several months it hasn't spiked. It's even" pic.twitter.com/yLO4q9ON02
— unusual_whales (@unusual_whales) September 19, 2022
Finally, Biden pointed to the job growth in the country, the low unemployment rate, and the decrease in gas prices over the last three months.
His comment seems to be an attempt to defend his decision to celebrate the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act last week.
That event came the day the August inflation report was released which led the Dow Jones Industrial Average to plummet more than 1,200 points and led to a stunning split screen of Biden celebrating at the White House while the stock market tanked.
WATCH: President Biden celebrates his 'Inflation Reduction Act' as the stock market tanks.
"There is this unfortunate split screen right now with the Dow taking a total beating," CNN anchor says. "It feels like it's hard to be celebratory for some people…" pic.twitter.com/Cf59T6uon6
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) September 13, 2022
It is good for the country that inflation did not keep climbing after it hit 9.1% in June.
But having inflation around 8% is not good. That’s not normal. That still means costs are going up dramatically, and those are real costs that everyday Americans have to adjust for.
Even worse is that the August report comes as gas prices had decreased from their high in June, which means that prices in areas rose and offset the dip in fuel costs.
It seems that with inflation, Biden’s message is akin to the meme of the dog sitting at a table surrounded by fire declaring, “This is fine.”
With the midterm elections approaching and inflation stubbornly high, it makes sense that Biden is trying to put lipstick on the pig of high prices.
Congratulations, America, you’re still paying a lot but not as much as you could be. And there has been job growth. You’re welcome. Now make sure to vote for the Democrats in November.
If prices were showing signs of a steady decline, that would be a powerful message for Biden and the Democrats going into the election. They could argue that there was short-term pain, but their policies are working to bring price increases under control.
However, telling voters that it’s not as bad as it could be is not really a winning message and won’t win over Americans concerned about inflation.
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